Next week at the 2014 Paris Motor Show, Fiat will introduce the 500X crossover, a new vehicle inspired by the popular 500 city car but with an increased ground clearance that can take you also on uneven roads. For those who don’t know, the 500X is based on the Jeep Renegade, which was unveiled earlier this year at the 2014 Geneva Motor Show.
Some of you folks, including us, believe that the new Italian vehicle will actually cannibalize sales of the Jeep Renegade but analysts think the opposite, as the two vehicles appeal to different types of customers.
The Jeep Renegade and Fiat 500X can coexist, according to Giorgio Elefante, a PwC consultant. Ian Fletcher, an IHS Automotive analyst believes that the 500X is a cute urban vehicle with off-road capabilities while the Renegade is seen as a rugged off-roader.
The strength of the 500X will be the design, while the Renegade is more functional. Jeep will offer the 2015 Renegade with a 1.4-liter turbocharged inline-four engine that produces 160 hp and 170 pounds-feet of torque, bolted to a six-speed manual gearbox.
A more potent 2.4-liter inline-four generates 184 hp and 177 pounds-feet of torque, mated to a nine-speed automatic transmission. The Fiat 500X will get the same engines but more details will be revealed next week.
With a design penned by the Centro Stile Fiat, the new Fiat 500X marries iconic styling and the modern crossover concept while adding a commendable off-road capability. Thus, the new 500X represents a new dimension of the Fiat 500, but with the looks and ability to pursue outdoor adventures.
The 500X is truly an expression of "Made in Fiat" design. It offers a respectable blend of flexibility, rationality and quality – all of which are conveyed through compact dimensions and ample interior space, as well as through the selection of premium materials and fabrics. Furthermore, the new 500X is laden with an array of technologies that enhance passenger safety, comfort and well-being. Fiat described the new 500X as a casual, fun vehicle that offers optimal freedom of movement. In addition, the new 500X could properly reflect the personality of its driver, as made possible by a wide array of available customization options.
As designed, the new 500X delivers a solid, robust appearance as contrasted by harmonious lines. The new 500X is suitable for customers seeking for the comfort, space and equipment offered by a compact saloon, but needing a car which has a compact nature perfect for daily urban drives. In terms of dimensions, the new 500X has a length of 4.25 meters long (plus 2 cm for the leisure version), a width of 1.8 meters wide, and a height of 1.60 meters. Versions with roof bars or four-wheel drive system are taller (1.61 meters and 1.62 meters, respectively).
Fiat created the new 500X to be compact outside, yet spacious and protective inside. The interior of the new 500X extensively employs high quality materials and finishes and boasts of a number of practical storage compartments. Its passenger compartment could be arranged in at least seven configurations and makes use of a careful selection of different fabrics, leather, colors and finishes. Its functional nature is boosted by its spacious luggage compartment (350 liters) and various seat adjustment options.