LA Auto Show: Fiat 500L makes its North American debut

Article by Christian A., on November 30, 2012

It’s no fluke that the Fiat 500 has been adored by so many for over 55 years. Even so, Fiat continues to enhance its style, fuel economy, and driving pleasure. In fact, the all-new 2014 Fiat 500L has more than 42% more interior space and could now seat five people. It comes with appealing driving dynamics, a 1.4-liter MultiAir Turbo engine with a best-in-class 160hp and two six-speed transmission offerings that all have a contemporary Italian design.

Since the global debut of the modern Fiat 500 in 2007, the automaker has reported sales of over a million units in 110 countries. The all-new Fiat 500L now offers a new approach to the car’s uniqueness when it comes to style, to how it communicates with the outside world, and to how it achieves a new on-board experience.

The “L” in the model name refers to the six dimensions of the Fiat 500L. The first is “Leveraging,” which represents the brand's approach to the iconic Cinquecento design DNA. "Large," talks about functionality and space with its new "small-wide" vehicle architecture. "Loft," stands for the trendsetting environment with exclusive panoramic views and the segment's biggest dual-pane sunroof (20.7 sq.ft. or 1.92 m2 dual-pane glass system).

"Lifestyle" indicates the four unique models such as the all-new Fiat 500L Trekking that completely merges rugged styling and versatility for a Cinquecento that suits those with a highly active lifestyle. "Light," is a reference to eco-friendly technology.

The sixth dimension, "Liters," cites the model’s fuel-efficient MultiAir Turbo engine that offers the highest output-per-liter and best-in-class standard hp (160 hp) and torque (184 lb.-ft.) in the segment. The Fiat 500L provides an even better driver precision and control with its six-speed manual transmission, or segment-exclusive six-speed dual dry clutch transmission (DDCT).

The 2014 Fiat 500L boasts a design that is purposeful, simplistic, and distinctly Italian. It is an embodiment of Fiat’s "Simply More" tenet and through the unprecedented forms of the modern Cinquecento (500) style, it reformulates the brand’s history of small-car ingenuity in order to meet the standards and requirements of growing families and of those who life active lifestyles.

According to Roberto Giolito, FIAT Brand Design Head, just like the Fiat 500, this all-new 500L has design personality traits and strengths that are attributes of the iconic Cinquecento family. He said that their new 5-passenger Cinquecento showcases versatility through innovation, which helps develop Fiat’s identification even further while also paying tribute to smart city-friendly vehicles in the history of the brand.

From the original Fiat 500 design of Italian car designer Dante Giacosa in the 1950s up until the "Simply More" philosophy that FIAT Design has adopted now, the 2014 Fiat 500L’s design ties various experiences and moments of the brand's innovations with its iconic style for a much more versatile and spacious Cinquecento offering.

Under Giolito’s guidance, the Fiat 500L designers have taken a look back at Fiat’s commitment to develop and evolve automobiles. They focused on the mantra "vocation for invention," which can be linked and traced to Fiat design throughout the years and which defines the global success of Italian design.

Press Release

Fiat 500L

Expanding on the style, efficiency and driving enjoyment that has made the Fiat 500 an icon for more than 55 years, the all-new 2014 Fiat 500L expands the Cinquecento's appeal by offering more than 42 percent more interior space with spacious seating for five, engaging driving dynamics, a 1.4-liter MultiAir Turbo engine with a best-in-class 160 horsepower and two six-speed transmission offerings all wrapped in contemporary Italian design.

"The all-new Fiat 500L the reach of the FIAT brand in North America and will keep our customers within the brand as their lifestyle needs expand," said Tim Kuniskis, Head of FIAT Brand North America — Chrysler Group LLC. "Those who love the style and performance that only the Italians can create, can now enjoy space for five, functionality, practicality and value. The Fiat 500L is the whole package, and it now brings its unique flavor to the American market."

Since the modern Fiat 500's global launch in 2007, more than 1 million of these efficient and city-friendly vehicles have been sold in 110 countries worldwide. And now with the all-new Fiat 500L, the Cinquecento has grown up to accommodate even more of life's greatest experiences and emotions all together: children, friends, journeys, music and community.

The Fiat 500L delivers a new approach to the way a car expresses styling individuality, the way it communicates with the outside world and opens its doors to a new on-board experience. The letter 'L' sums up the six dimensions of the Fiat 500L: "Leveraging," the FIAT brand's approach to its iconic Cinquecento design DNA; "Large," meant as functionality and space via its new "small-wide" vehicle architecture; "Loft," a trendsetting environment where one can live life to the fullest behind segment-exclusive panoramic views and the segment's largest dual-pane sunroof (20.7 sq.ft. (1.92 m2) dual-pane glass system); "Lifestyle," four unique models including the all-new Fiat 500L Trekking that perfectly blends rugged styling and versatility for a Cinquecento that complements customers with a highly active lifestyle; and "Light," when 'lightness' means human- and eco-friendly technology.

Paired with its tight European handling and quick steering, the sixth dimension, "Liters" defines the fuel-efficient MultiAir Turbo engine in the all-new Fiat 500L, providing the highest output-per-liter and best-in-class standard horsepower (160 hp) and torque (184 lb.-ft.) in the segment. For even more driver precision and control, the Fiat 500L features a six-speed manual transmission, or segment-exclusive six-speed dual dry clutch transmission (DDCT).

All-new Fiat 500L Trekking: the adventurous side of the 500L

The premiere of the 2014 Fiat 500L Trekking expands the appeal and practicality of the Fiat 500L with distinct, rugged looks; an athletic two-tone interior environment; unique front and rear fascia designs, flared wheel arches and larger 17-inch wheels to support its adventurous personality.

"From Gucci to Abarth, our Fiat 500 and now all-new Fiat 500L illustrate the different personalities and capabilities the FIAT brand can deliver from the same basic sheet metal," said Tim Kuniskis. "And with the rugged personality of the Trekking, we will attract a wider cross section of customers while keeping intact all the great benefits of the Fiat 500L."

Making the all-new 2014 Fiat 500L Trekking distinct is the addition of aggressively styled front and rear fascias with Nero (black) accents for a bolder look. Unique Nero wheel arch and body-side sill moldings give the Fiat 500L Trekking a more adventurous look, while larger 17 x 7-inch aluminum wheels hint at the urban-utility vehicle's handling capabilities.

A unique two-tone Nero/Marrone (black/brown) interior environment continues the Fiat 500L Trekking's rugged-athletic theme. At the center of it all, an all-new Uconnect 5.0 system features a 5-inch intelligently and intuitively designed touchscreen interface, handsfree calling and Bluetooth-streaming audio, as well as voice-command control of the radio and a media hub for seamless integration of portable devices. For even more capability, the Fiat 500L Trekking can be had with the premium Uconnect 6.5 system with its larger 6.5-inch touchscreen radio, with dealer-activated navigation with intuitive map graphics and a premium media hub with SD card reader.

The all-new 2014 Fiat 500L and all-new Fiat 500L Trekking models are produced at FIAT Automobiles' manufacturing plant in Kragujevac, Serbia, and will arrive to FIAT Studios in North America in mid-2013.


With its simplistic, purposeful and distinct Italian design, the all-new 2014 Fiat 500L embodies the brand's "Simply More" philosophy by reformulating its history of small-car ingenuity to meet the needs of growing families and those with active lifestyles through modern Cinquecento (500) style in unprecedented forms.

"Like the Fiat 500, the all-new Fiat 500L's strength and design personality traits are strong attributes to the iconicity of the Cinquecento family," said Roberto Giolito, Head of FIAT Brand Design. "With its versatility through design innovation, our new five-passenger Cinquecento further develops the brand's identification while paying homage to clever city-friendly vehicles in FIAT's history."

Paying homage to FIAT brand's history of innovative multifunctional vehicles

From Dante Giacosa's original Fiat 500 design in the 1950s to the "Simply More" principle FIAT Design has undertaken today, the design of the all-new 2014 Fiat 500L ties different moments and experiences of FIAT brand's innovations with iconic style for an even more spacious and versatile Cinquecento offering.

Under the guidance of Roberto Giolito, Fiat 500L designers looked back at the brand's traceable commitment to developing and evolving automobiles. The designers focused on the "vocation for invention" mantra that has been linked to FIAT design through the ages and defines the success of Italian design throughout the world.

Developed on FIAT's new "small-wide" architecture, the all-new Fiat 500L includes some of the most radical and profoundly innovative design elaborations through a traceable sequence of previous models. The Fiat 500L pays homage to past FIAT models and styling features, including archetypical design features that inspired the historic 1956 Fiat 600 Multipla's clever city-friendly versatility. In addition, styling roots from previous models were included in the Fiat 500L project and hark back to the 1957 Fiat 500, 1972 Fiat 127, 1980 Fiat Panda, 1983 Fiat Uno, 1998 Fiat Multipla and the modern Fiat 500 in 2007.

Larger: iconic Cinquecento cues, now with five doors

With its recognizable Cinquecento exterior design features, the all-new 2014 Fiat 500L provides even more space, utility and comfort, while offering a natural and coherent product extension in FIAT Studios.

With recognizable Fiat 500 physiognomy — its signature "whiskers and logo" face — plus an additional 6.1 inches (15.5 cm) in width, the all-new Fiat 500L has even more presence while exuding the FIAT family resemblance in stylistic harmony. Larger bi-halogen projector headlamps and lower park lamps tie in the iconic look, while the vehicle's front fascia, body-color fascia insert and cooling duct continue the FIAT brand's facial feature resemblance. Providing fresh air for the 1.4-liter MultiAir Turbo engine's intercooler, the Fiat 500L's front fascia grille features a honeycomb lower grille texture with available road-brightening fog lamps.

Because Fiat 500 models have always focused on maximizing the scenic views each journey provides, the all-new Fiat 500L goes one step further to deliver panoramic views from within. Illustrating purposeful Italian design, the Fiat 500L features segment-exclusive glass A- and D-pillars for an interior environment nearly encapsulated by 360 degree views. For a sporty appearance, the belt- and window-molding surrounds are trimmed in Nero (black). In addition to a monotone look, the new five-passenger Cinquecento offers even more style, with its "floating" roof painted in Nero or Bianco (white). The Fiat 500L also offers the segment's largest sunroof, providing first and second-row passengers with cityscape views through a 20.7 sq.ft. (1.92 m2) dual-pane glass system.

The 2014 Fiat 500L's silhouette is 26.9 inches (68.3 cm) longer yet features the familiar forward-sloping A-line and adds a cab-forward approach for improved visibility and an even more dynamic look. Similar to the historic and modern Cinquecento, the Fiat 500L's body-side lateral section features clean surfaces, flared wheel arches and chromed door handles. For added style and protection, body-side door moldings are painted in body color and are available with chrome accents. Filling the wheel wells are seven unique wheel designs ranging from 16 inches to a sporty 17 inches with the 500 logo on the center caps. For familiar Cinquecento character, the chromed-accented headlamps with "500" logo and taillamps are visible from the side profile, thanks to the way the Fiat 500L's rounded sides link up to the front and rear.

Maintaining its city-friendly proportions, the all-new Fiat 500L's rear fascia and bumper are well-integrated into the design of the five-door for shorter overhangs and a tidy look. Providing easier cargo loading, the Fiat 500L's liftgate design features one of the segment's lowest cargo-lift heights (26.2 inches (66.5 cm) from ground). For simplistic design character, the lower-liftgate area is recessed to accommodate a license plate, while the adjacent fascia integrates left and right side reflectors. Finishing off the rear are square-in-circular taillamps and a prominent FIAT liftgate badge with "500L" logo beneath.

Loft: style, comfort and panoramic views

Like a loft that provides a contemporary, wide, open and luminous dimension, the interior of the all-new Fiat 500L offers 42 percent more interior space than the 500 hatchback for added capability, plus even more style and comfort for up to five passengers and their belongings.

Like the Fiat 500, the Fiat 500L embraces a particular stylistic and constructive interpretation that strives for simplified enjoyment. Careful analysis of the interior space affords the all-new five-passenger model with an airy and roomy passenger compartment designed to be comfortable and enjoyable for any destination.

With segment-exclusive glass A- and D-pillars for nearly 360 degree views, the Fiat 500L provides the most outward visibility in its class. To maximize passenger visibility, the Fiat 500L features elevated second-row seats and an available dual-glass panel sunroof.

Like a well-designed loft, the focal point of the Fiat 500L is its instrument panel, which continues the Cinquecento's perfect blend of modern simplicity, iconic Italian styling and numerous personalization options. Expanding on the Fiat 500, the Fiat 500L's upper instrument panel is designed to convey a sense of refinement, elegance and fun with the availability of color-matched exterior accents and premium vinyl-wrapped or painted accents. A thick-rimmed three-spoke FIAT steering wheel is available in leather and two-tone color options and features the square-in-circular design cue. Behind, two large analog gauges provide vehicle and engine speed, while two secondary gauges provide fuel and engine temperature information.

The instrument cluster also includes an Electronic Vehicle Information Center (EVIC) to provide the driver with trip, vehicle and Uconnect system information. At the center, the Fiat 500L is available with the all-new Uconnect 5.0 or 6.5 radio system, providing passengers with information and connectivity options on a 5-inch or larger 6.5-inch touchscreen. On the passenger side, a recessed instrument panel cubby and covered glove box provide quick storage access. Designed to be ergonomic, the Fiat 500L's climate control and transmission shifter are easy to reach from the available center armrest. The lower instrument panel and center console highlight the Fiat 500L's space utilization with large- and small-sized storage spaces to keep mobile devices at a convenient reach.

Continuing the family resemblance, the 2014 Fiat 500L is available with seven fabric and two leather interior choices, paired with 64 internal/external design combinations across its models range. The Fiat 500L model lineup is inspired by four distinct spirits: young, dynamic and cool for the Fiat 500L Pop model; comfortable, practical and bright for the Fiat 500L Easy model; rugged and athletic for the Fiat 500L Trekking model; and elegant, sophisticated and contemporary for the Fiat 500L Lounge model.

Ensuring passengers are surrounded by premium materials that deliver a sensorial experience, Centro Stile's Color & Material Group specifically carried out studies to define which materials and colors the Fiat 500L product range would include. The group's research redefined technologies and production processes to further increase the quality level and value of the physical, tactile and visual properties of the materials, details and finishes to be applied.

All-new Fiat 500L Trekking: blending rugged style with utility

Designed for customers with a highly active lifestyle, the Fiat 500L Trekking model offers the perfect blend of rugged styling and versatility to match their needs. For a more aggressive look, a restyled front fascia features a bolder Nero-accented design graphic with large lower opening, fog lamps and adjacent "nostril" type air openings at the corners. Above, the cooling duct has been enlarged for a more aggressive appearance, while the familiar "whiskers" and unique lower front fascia accent are finished in satin silver. Connecting the front and rear fascias are Nero wheel-arch and body-side sill moldings that provide this Fiat 500L with a more distinct look. The rear fascia continues the bold Nero design graphic plus the addition of a satin silver lower fascia accent for added style. Emphasizing the width of this Cinquecento, the horizontal recessed license plate area and rear fascia's lower left and right side reflectors are finished in Nero.

Inside, the Fiat 500L Trekking features a unique two-tone Nero/Marrone (black/brown) interior environment that is carried through on its leather-wrapped steering wheel, door and door-panel armrest bolsters, seat fabric and floor mats.

Design Approach

Following its worldwide debut at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show this March, the design experience that gave birth to the all-new Fiat 500L has been documented in "500L, a Fiat Design Approach" - an exclusive publication that shares the story behind the 500L project.

From Dante Giacosa in the mid twentieth century, to the new course undertaken by FIAT Design under the guidance of Roberto Giolito today, "500L, a Fiat Design Approach" traces the brand's commitment to developing unique automobiles, while continuing the success of Italian design throughout the world.

With original designer's sketches, this FIAT original publication illustrates the Fiat 500L's concept development through some of the brand's most radical and profoundly innovative design elaborations. The book traces the all-new "multi-purpose" vehicle's styling inspiration through a sequence of previous models, including the historic 1956 Fiat 600 Multipla, 1957 Fiat 500, the 1972 Fiat 127, the 1980 Fiat Panda, the 1983 Fiat Uno and the 1998 Fiat Multipla.

In addition, "500L, a Fiat Design Approach," highlights the route undertaken with the new Fiat 500 project and how it represented an important phase for the FIAT Brand paving the way for the all-new Fiat 500L - a natural and coherent product extension for the brand.


The Fiat 500L was conceived and developed in Italy, yet spent quality time proving itself on this side of the Atlantic to prepare for its North American debut.

"The Fiat 500L was extensively tested prior to its market launch in Europe, but we still conducted a full battery of durability and reliability testing in the United States because of the rough road conditions and variations in the North American climate," Doug Betts, Head of Quality for Fiat S.p.A. and Chrysler Group LLC, explained.

The global quality team constantly compares quality testing results from Italy and the United States.

For example, suspension performance and durability gets a lot of attention because the car needs to perform well in diverse geographic conditions. In Europe, the suspension components get a work out from all the lateral loads experienced on the twisty mountain roads common in many parts of Italy. For North American customers, the FIAT team has to safeguard against the long-term effects of rougher roads and numerous potholes.

In total, the Fiat 500L test fleet is accumulating approximately 7.5 million miles so the FIAT team can find and fix any issues that arise. This includes testing done in laboratories in Turin, Italy and Auburn Hills, Mich., at FIAT and Chrysler Group proving grounds, as well as reliability testing on public roads in many different climates in Europe and the United States.

The 3/36 Reliability Testing, appropriately named as each test car accumulates 36,000 miles (equivalent to three years of use) in about three months, is conducted day and night by teams of drivers. To reflect typical daily driver scenarios, the test drivers do not originate from the engineering ranks and are intentionally chosen from diverse backgrounds to represent customers of different ages, sizes and ethnicities. The test drivers scrutinize all the customer functional aspects of each vehicle as well as overall driving evaluations. This includes radio and navigation system checks, seat belt buckling, heating and ventilation operation and opening and closing storage compartments and windows.

The Fiat 500L development team meets every day and reviews any issues that surface during testing.

"It's a great benefit to the quality teams to compare notes from different testing locations," Betts explained. "Ultimately, our customers benefit with a better performing, higher quality vehicle since we make improvements to all versions of the car based on how it performs in the harshest conditions of each market it's sold in."

The Fiat 500L is assembled at the FIAT Automobiles Serbia plant in Kragujevac, Serbia. The plant began building cars earlier this year following three years of intense work and a $1.3 billion investment to essentially rebuild an automobile plant and install state-of-the-art manufacturing equipment and tools. Preparations also included more than one million hours of staff training to instill World Class Manufacturing principles, which involve all employees in the manufacturing process for continuous process and quality improvements.

Quality was a key consideration for the planning of each work station and operator, which includes more than 1,900 quality controls on the assembly line. Similar to investments at other Fiat and Chrysler Group plants launching all-new products, the Serbian plant houses a high-tech Metrology Center. The Metrology Center allows engineers and technicians to find the sources of build variation - even when the components appear perfect to the naked eye - and resolve any fit and finish issues before customer vehicles are built.

"The Fiat 500L is an important launch as we continue to introduce a new generation of Fiat vehicles to a broader range of North American customers," Betts said. "Its versatility, craftsmanship and Italian style make a strong first impression, and we've engineered and thoroughly validated it to ensure it will create a lasting, positive impression from a quality standpoint."


Utilizing Fiat Automobile's new "small-wide" chassis architecture, the all-new 2014 Fiat 500L is designed to deliver world-class ride, handling, comfort and safety thanks to its high level of torsional rigidity and extensive use of high-strength steel.

"For the all-new 500L to deliver the fun-to-drive characteristics the FIAT brand is known for, we've engineered the new 'small-wide' architecture to maximize chassis performance, crashworthiness and outward visibility," said Phil Jansen, Fiat 500L Vehicle Line Executive — Chrysler Group LLC. "With its ultra-rigid body design, we were able to dial-in the chassis for an exceptional handling experience without compromising interior quietness and ride comfort."

Fiat Automobiles' new "small-wide" architecture

With extensive use of advanced steels, composites and advanced computer-impact simulations, the all-new Fiat 500L's "small-wide" architecture delivers world-class torsional stiffness for optimum control of body geometry. For its passengers, the new architecture enables the Fiat 500L to feel tighter and stiffer, with an added sense of confidence and control during higher speed maneuvers.

With the Fiat 500L vehicle development program led by Fiat Automobiles for all of its international markets, the all-new 2014 Fiat 500L is designed to be competitive in all aspects of crashworthiness in the B-segment. Designed and engineered for government regulations and third-party ratings around the world, the five-passenger Cinquecento is capable of achieving results at the top of its class.

Segment-leading interior quietness

For the new 2014 Fiat 500L to achieve an articulation index of 72 percent, a level at the top of its class, engineers maximized the vehicle's structural design, and tuned the interior environment for sound quality and sound level by isolating powertrain, wind and road noise.

The idea of "lightness" on the all-new Fiat 500L is also weighed in the quantity of silence. This five-passenger Cinquecento features a noise, vibration and harshness (NVH) package designed specifically for the expectations of North American consumers and includes laminated acoustic windshield glass, body-cavity silencing foam, under-flush rolled-framed doors with triple seals and acoustic wheel-well liners to absorb road noise and quiet the cabin. Combined, these design improvements place the all-new Fiat 500L's interior sound quality among the best in the B-segment.

Perfect combination of performance and comfort

Building upon the Cinquecento's fun-to-drive DNA, the 2014 Fiat 500L features a touring-tuned chassis that complements its MultiAir Turbo engine's best-in-class horsepower and torque.

To deliver class-leading levels of control and comfort, the Fiat 500L features a MacPherson front-suspension design with a specially designed tubular anti-roll bar with exceptional rigidity for increased cornering performance and reduced weight. In addition, a specially designed front cross member serves two roles by providing rigidity to achieve greater acoustic comfort and to integrate a third-load line to improve energy absorption in the event of a crash. A new innovation is the adoption of a "split" type shock-absorber mounting that transmits road vibrations to the body through two different routes for improved acoustics and better efficiency of the shock absorber.

At the rear, the Fiat 500L features a new torsion axle structure with a high level of rolling rigidity to save the weight of an anti-roll bar. Unique to the North American market are urethane bushings that deliver ride control and comfort, with the durability needed for more treacherous unpaved roadways. For performance and comfort with the benefit of weight savings, the rear suspension of the Fiat 500L utilizes monotube shock absorbers.

Dual-pinion electric power steering system

The 2014 Fiat 500L features precise steering thanks to its electric power steering (EPS) and driving steering torque (DST) system that improve both handling and performance.

The all-new Fiat 500L features next-generation electric dual-pinion steering, which delivers sporty handling by managing significant loads at all steering wheel operating speeds, power assist curves modulated according to driving conditions, and up to a 3 percent improvement in fuel efficiency when compared with a conventional hydraulic system.

In addition, the Fiat 500L employs EPS. All of the power boost, or assist, is provided via an electric motor, and because the system is fully electronic, the driver experiences optimal steering effort at all vehicle speeds with improved fuel efficiency since there is no parasitic loss from a power steering pump.

The Fiat 500L's DST system improves both driving safety and handling performance by actively carrying out corrections and automatically controls oversteer over surfaces with low grip in all driving conditions. Moreover, the steering system is fully integrated with the vehicle's electronic stability control (ESC) system to help compensate in split-traction, torque steer and pull-drift (crowned road) situations.

Four-wheel disc brakes with electronic stability control (ESC)

The all-new 2014 Fiat 500L features world-class brake systems designed with class-leading performance and feel, state-of-the-art technologies and maximum refinement.

At the front, 2.24-inch (57 mm) single-piston calipers feature 12.0 x 1.10-inch (305 x 28 mm) vented rotors provide a large sweeping area, while 1.49-inch (38 mm) rear calipers with solid 10.4 x 0.4-inch (264 x 10 mm) disc brakes contribute to the Cinquecento's precise brake-pedal feel and reduced stopping distance.

The Fiat 500L features a four-channel electronic stability control (ESC) system that monitors the speed of each wheel individually. The four-channel system allows individual wheel braking for superior control and provides backup braking in the unlikely event that one of the two braking circuits would fail. The anti-lock brake (ABS) software uses a steering wheel angle sensor that allows the system to differentiate between straight-line braking and braking in a turn resulting in better straight-line braking with minimal yaw.

ESC helps maximize driver control in all conditions by combining both engine torque and brake control to regulate wheel spin at all driving speeds. When the system senses impending wheel slip during acceleration, it signals the throttle control to reduce drive wheel torque. Under extreme situations, such as going from pavement to ice during acceleration, the system will selectively apply the brakes to maintain control. An ESC button on the center stack allows the driver to partially turn off the system.

Other features in the Fiat 500L's ESC system include:

Electronic brake-force distribution (EBD)
Electronic rollover mitigation (ERM)
Hill-start Assist (HSA)
Brake traction-control system (BTCS)
Brake Assist

Chrysler Group LLC's heritage as a technology leader is enriched with the debut of the 500L, the first FIAT brand vehicle to integrate the Uconnect brand of connected features.

"For nearly 10 years, Uconnect has served Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep® and Ram customers," says Marios Zenios, Vice President, Uconnect Systems and Services — Chrysler Group LLC. "We are pleased to welcome FIAT customers to the fold with a new range of premium features."

All-new Uconnect 5.0 and 6.5

The all-new FIAT 500L uniquely showcases Uconnect's distinctive handling of in-vehicle handsfree communication, entertainment and navigation.

The all-new Uconnect 5.0 system features a 5-inch touchscreen that enables handsfree calling via Bluetooth-equipped phones, as well as voice-command control of AM/FM and optional SiriusXM Radio. Compatible smartphones equipped with Bluetooth and Message Access Profile (MAP) can receive text messages. The system announces receipt of the message, identifies the sender and then "reads" the message aloud.

In addition, digital music can be streamed wirelessly from compatible Bluetooth smartphones or audio players supported by a media hub equipped with auxiliary jack and USB that enables recharging and seamless operation of portable devices. An integrated CD player offers additional media flexibility.

Upping the ante is the available Uconnect 6.5 model with a 6.5-inch touchscreen display, voice operation of AM/FM and standard satellite radio, mobile phones and dealer-activated navigation with intuitive map graphics. Additional features include handsfree calling and audio streaming via compatible Bluetooth-enabled phones, text-message reader, personalization settings and a premium media hub with SD card reader. Both Uconnect 5.0 and 6.5 systems are available with optional Parkview rear backup camera.

eco:Drive app helps improve driving efficiency

The all-new 2014 500L offers FIAT brand's state-of-the-art eco:Drive app, demonstrating that an automaker's environmental responsibility should extend beyond the production line and into the actual way customers drive their cars.

Included on Uconnect 5.0, eco:Drive app collects all necessary data relating to vehicle efficiency and transmits it to the 5-inch touchscreen so drivers can view the information real time. The information also can be transmitted through the USB port to any USB memory stick. Plug the stick into a personal computer and the app details vehicle performance, such as per trip CO2 emission levels. In addition, eco:Drive analyzes the driver's style and provides recommendations on how to modify his or her driving style to help reduce fuel consumption and CO2 emissions.

Originated in Europe, today there are more than 80,000 eco:Drive users worldwide. The eco:Drive app has encouraged drivers to set challenges - CO2 reduction targets for specific journeys or over a set period of time. And as part of a global "eco:Ville" community, the system encourages all drivers to come together and pool their fuel and emissions savings to illustrate how individual contributions help the greater good.

Beats by Dr. Dre audio system

Following the launch of the Beats by Dr. Dre audio system in the 2013 Fiat 500, the all-new 2014 Fiat 500L also offers its passengers a music experience the way the artist intended. The Beats Audio studio-quality sound system includes six premium speakers, an 8-inch dual-voice coil (DVC) subwoofer with trunk-mounted enclosure and 8-channel amplifier with Beats Audio digital sound processing (DSP) algorithm.


Compared with the Fiat 500, the all-new 2014 500L is simply more of a good thing.

As a complement to the Fiat 500L's spacious and versatile interior, its 1.4-liter MultiAir Turbo engine delivers more horsepower and torque than its competitors, along with the segment's only available dual dry clutch transmission (DDCT).

"The FIAT brand brings with it the expectation of a lively driving experience," says David Schmidt, MultiAir and MultiAir Turbo Engine Chief Engineer — Chrysler Group LLC. "With best-in-class horsepower and torque, along with MultiAir valve technology for reduced emissions and maximum fuel efficiency, the all-new Fiat 500L will not disappoint."

High-performance engine design with high-performance output and fuel economy

First seen on the track-proven Fiat 500 Abarth, now the fuel-efficient 1.4-liter MultiAir Turbo four-cylinder engine finds its way into the Fiat 500L as the single engine offering, delivering 160 best-in-class horsepower and a best-in-class 184 lb.-ft. torque. The new 1.4-liter MultiAir Turbo engine transmits it power through high-strength components throughout the drivetrain, including its equal-length half shafts.

Selected as the "Best International Engine in 2010" by a panel of 72 journalists from 36 countries, the new 1.4-liter MultiAir Turbo engine is designed to meet the rigorous demands of performance driving throughout its 6,500 rpm range.

Structurally, the 1.4-liter MultiAir Turbo engine starts with a durable cast-iron block and a structural aluminum bedplate. The bore is 72 mm and stroke 84 mm for a total displacement of 1,368 cc.

At the bottom end, a forged-steel crankshaft with select-fit main bearings is supported across five main journals. The crankshaft has been designed with lightened counterweights to reduce overall mass for high engine rpm operation.

Durability is ensured with the use of lightweight forged-steel connecting rods that have been designed with a unique cross section to minimize the longitudinal and lateral bending of the rod.

Lightweight cast-aluminum pistons, with a compression ratio of 9.8:1, contribute to the overall efficiency of the reciprocating assembly and the engine's high rpm capability. Full-floating piston pins are used for added strength. Piston cooling jets, located at the bottom of each cylinder, contribute to fuel economy by squirting oil on the bottom of the pistons to help maintain cylinder temperatures and reduce the possibility of hot spots along the cylinder walls or at the top of the piston that could lead to spark knock.

This high-performance 1.4-liter engine also is fitted with a structural aluminum oil pan with a crankcase capacity of 4 quarts and a dry filter. Synthetic 5W-40 engine oil is recommended, due to higher overall temperatures with the turbocharger. Oil change intervals are set at 10,000 miles.

Innovative MultiAir cylinder head

The high-performance 1.4-liter MultiAir Turbo engine features FIAT's exclusive MultiAir intake valve technology. Unlike engines that rely on direct action from fixed lobes on the camshaft to control intake valve opening and closing, MultiAir is an electro-hydraulic system that can control intake air, cylinder by cylinder and stroke by stroke, depending on the precise operating conditions and the demands from the driver and engine control system.

Actual opening of the valves is controlled by a small actuating piston and hydraulic fluid running through a narrow passage that is controlled by a dual-action solenoid. When the solenoid is closed, under highway speeds or full acceleration, intake valves are fully open much like a traditional engine for maximum power. At lower speeds, the solenoid opens precisely during the intake stroke allowing oil to bypass the passage, thus decoupling the valves. This allows for infinite control of the valves and controls the amount of fresh air into the cylinders, reducing wasted energy that is common with fixed intake lobes on a camshaft.

Spent exhaust gases are released through exhaust valves operated by traditional lobes on the camshaft and exit through a cast stainless steel exhaust manifold.

Ignition is through a single output, coil-on-plug system. Spark plugs are dual precious metal for durability and smooth idle.

Fuel delivery is sequential, multi-port and electronically controlled with injectors located to direct the fuel spray at the intake valves in a wide spray pattern that increases fuel atomization and enhances complete combustion for a smooth driving experience.

MultiAir technology on normally aspirated 1.4-liter engines provides up to a 15 percent increase in low engine rpm torque, up to 7.5 percent improvement in fuel efficiency and a 7.5 percent reduction in carbon dioxide emissions.

Intercooled turbocharger provides 160 horsepower

The boost to 160 horsepower on the all-new Fiat 500L is largely due to its single turbocharger that operates off engine exhaust and uses energy that would normally be wasted through the tailpipe.

Like its Fiat 500 Abarth stablemate, the all-new Fiat 500L's turbocharger spins up to 23,000 rpm to convert exhaust heat and pressure into rotation that drives a compressor. The compressor draws cool air and pumps it into the intake manifold at increased pressure. The result is more air in the cylinders, hence more torque and power. Boost pressure is dynamically managed to provide a broad torque curve over a wide variety of ambient conditions, with a peak pressure of 21 psi at 4,000 rpm.

The 1.4-liter MultiAir Turbo's induction system includes a single intercooler that is designed to remove heat in the air charge that the turbocharger generates while compressing incoming air. Removing heat provides a cooler, denser air charge that helps increase the potential for more power. A cooler air charge also reduces the potential for engine knock.

High-performance engine components

Delivering more power also required a number of powertrain improvements to the engine and transmission components needed for the demands of high-performance driving.

On the intake side, the 1.4-liter MultiAir Turbo features a fresh-air intake system with high-flow air filter, redesigned air box for improved air flow and smooth-flowing plumbing for maximum power and low induction noise. A low-restriction exhaust system delivers minimal exhaust gas backpressure for maximum power.

The powertrain control module (PCM) integrates all of the MultiAir Turbo engine's control functions, including management of the MultiAir system.

An upgraded electrical system includes a high-output 140-amp alternator and 500-amp cold-cranking, maintenance-free battery for increased vehicle system charging.

High-performance transmission and driveline

The all-new Fiat 500L can be equipped with either a six-speed manual or six-speed DDCT paired with its 1.4-liter MultiAir Turbo engine. Sharing a common design, including a 6.88 ratio spread, the transmissions feature final-drive ratios of 4.12 (manual) and 4.44 (DDCT) for quick acceleration and faster top speed while maintaining fuel economy. And with its first-gear overall launch ratio of 18.4:1 and precision-controlled shift points, the Fiat 500L delivers precise gear changes consistent with the brand's fun-to-drive cachet.

The innovative DDCT is standard on the Fiat 500L Lounge model, and is available on the Fiat 500L Easy and Trekking models.

Designed to handle the increased torque loads, both transmissions on the Fiat 500L include a tubular intermediate shaft with equal-length half shafts to mitigate torque steer. The bar shafts are designed for increased strength to reduce torsional stress in the driveline during performance driving. To handle the power and torque of the new 1.4-liter MultiAir Turbo engine, large constant velocity joints with high torsional strength of 2,600 N•m deliver durability and refinement. Shudderless inboard joints are also used for refinement.

Safety & Security

At FIAT brand, safety has always been a priority, and this objective has enabled the all-new 2014 Fiat 500L to integrate advanced safety technology that affords the level of driving confidence today's thoughtful consumer demands.

Seven standard air bags and reactive head restraints

The all-new 2014 Fiat 500L features an all-new air bag system to offer unique protection for its passengers to meet all U.S. regulatory requirements. Its seven standard air bags include: driver and front-passenger advanced multistage air bags, driver's knee air bag, full-length side-curtain air bags and standard seat-mounted side pelvic-thorax air bags, all to offer enhanced occupant protection in the event of a collision.

Reactive head restraints, which activate during a rear impact, are another innovation helping minimize injuries by reducing the gap between the head restraint and the passenger's head.

Electronic stability control (ESC)

The Fiat 500L features standard electronic stability control (ESC) for improved braking performance in wet or panic conditions.

Behind the scenes, the ESC system is ready to intervene by integrating key chassis control systems, including electronic brake-force distribution (EBD), anti-lock brake system (ABS) and traction control systems (TCS) to control all four wheels in response to yaw and steering input.

In effect, ESC determines the driver's intentions and adjusts the vehicle's dynamic forces to maintain the driver's intended course. Should the driver exceed the performance limits of the road surface — such that the vehicle starts to oversteer or understeer — ESC instantly analyzes input from the wheel sensors and corrects the pending loss of control by applying any one, several or all of the system's brakes.

ParkView rear backup camera

Providing a wide-angle view of the area immediately behind the vehicle through the Fiat 500L's all-new Uconnect 5.0 or 6.5 radio, ParkView gives the driver greater peace of mind before backing up. The image is automatically displayed on the touchscreen when the transmission is shifted into Reverse and provides gridlines to help the driver gauge distances.

More than 40 available safety and security features

The following is a list of the 2014 Fiat 500L's more than 40 available safety and security features, which include:

  • Active turn signals: Turn signal flashes three times when stalk is depressed for one second to indicate a lane change (standard)
  • Advanced multistage air bags: Inflate with a force appropriate to the severity of the impact. In addition, Fiat 500L's unique driver's air bag design includes tethers to shape the air bag. The passenger airbag has a unique air bag venting system, allowing one vent of the air bag to remain open while the air bag is fully inflating. A secondary vent is actuated as the passenger contacts the air bag at the end of a crash event, offering protection of passengers of all sizes
  • All-speed traction control: Helps to keep driving wheels from spinning during acceleration from a stop or during all speeds by applying individual brakes alone or in combination with engine torque limitation to prevent wheel slip
  • Anti-lock brake system (ABS): Senses and prevents wheel lockup, offering improved steering control under extreme braking and/or slippery conditions (standard)
  • Auto-dimming rearview mirror: Detects and reduces glare from rearward headlamps without driver intervention
  • BeltAlert: Activates a chime and/or illuminates an icon in the instrument cluster to remind the driver and front passenger to buckle up if the vehicle is driven without belted front-seat occupants (standard)
  • Bi-halogen projector headlamps: Provide wider, more focused light spread and improve forward visibility at night (standard)
  • Brake Assist: In an emergency brake situation, the system applies maximum braking power, minimizing the stopping distance (standard)
  • Brake Override: When a disagreement exists between the throttle and the brake, the brake signal causes the engine controller to reduce engine power, allowing the operator to stop the vehicle (standard)
  • Brake/Park interlock: Prevents a Fiat 500L with six-speed automatic transmission from being shifted out of Park unless the brake pedal is applied (standard)
  • Brake-traction control system (BTCS): Helps to keep driving wheels from spinning during acceleration from a stop or during slow speeds by applying individual brakes to the slipping wheel(s) (standard)
  • Cap-less fuel-filler door: Provides fuel-filling simplicity and eliminates contact with any fuel spillage (standard)
  • Child door locks: Allow the Fiat 500L's rear doors to open only from the exterior door handle when unlocked (standard)
  • Child seat anchor system: LATCH (Lower Anchors and Tethers for CHildren) is designed to ease installation of compatible aftermarket child seats (standard)
  • Constant-force Retractors (CFR): Regulate the force exerted on the occupant by the seat belt and then gradually release seat-belt webbing in a controlled manner. The system features a digressive load limiter for the driver and adaptive load limiter for the front passenger (standard)
  • Crumple zones: Designed to deform during an accident in order to absorb energy from an impact which decreases transfer of that energy to occupants (standard)
  • Daytime running lamps (DRL): Provide additional forward illumination for improved vehicle awareness
  • Electronic stability control (ESC): Enhances driver control and helps maintain directional stability under all conditions. Provides the benefit in critical driving situations, such as turns, and is valuable when driving on mixed-surface conditions, including snow, ice or gravel. If there is a discernible difference between driver input through the steering wheel and the Fiat 500L's path, ESC applies selective braking and throttle input to guide the vehicle back on to the driver's intended path (standard)
  • Energy management system: Three front load paths designed from high-strength steel manage vehicle crush and minimize cabin intrusion (standard)
  • Express down windows: One-touch powered express down window button located on the center console (standard)
  • Full-length side-curtain air bags: Extend protection to all outboard front- and rear-seat passengers. Each side air bag has its own impact sensors that autonomously trigger the air bag on the side where an impact occurs. This type of air bag is housed in the headliner just above the side windows (standard)
  • Head restraints: Includes all seating positions (standard)
  • Hill-start Assist (HSA): Assists drivers when starting a vehicle from a stop on a hill by maintaining the level of brake pressure applied for a short period of time after the driver's foot is removed from the brake pedal If throttle is not applied within a short period of time after the driver's foot is removed from the brake pedal, brake pressure will be released (standard)
  • Intelligent battery sensor (IBS): Continually measures the flow of current into and out of the battery. If the battery is running low, the system intelligently shuts off less critical electrical systems to help prevent a customer from being stranded due to a low or depleted battery. When IBS conducts load shedding, an icon appears in the cluster display (standard)
  • Knee air bag (driver's side): Located below the instrument panel, an air bag deploys when the driver's air bag deploys and is designed to properly position the occupant during impact and offer additional lower leg protection
  • Occupant restraint controller (ORC): Detects an impact and determines whether a crash is severe enough to trigger air bag deployment and whether the primary or secondary stage inflation is sufficient. In addition, the controller detects side impacts and determines whether the rail-curtain and side seat-mounted (pelvic-thorax) airbags should deploy. Engagement of front seat belt pretensioners are also managed through the controller (standard)
  • ParkSense rear park assist system: Assists at low speeds in reverse to detect stationary objects. Consists of audible warnings for the driver and has a display in the instrument cluster's Electronic Vehicle Information Center (EVIC)
  • ParkView rear backup camera: Provides a wide-angle view on the Uconnect screen of the area immediately behind the vehicle, giving the driver greater peace of mind before reversing at low speeds. The display features grid lines to aid the driver when maneuvering into parking spaces or narrow areas when the transmission is shifted into Reverse
  • Reactive head restraints: Activate in the event of a rear collision. Restraints are designed to reduce injuries by minimizing the gap between the driver and front-passenger head restraint and the passenger's head (standard)
  • Remote keyless entry: Locks and unlocks doors and turns on interior lamps. If the vehicle is equipped with the optional security alarm, the remote also arms and disarms that system (standard)
  • Safety cage body structure: Protects occupants by managing and controlling energy in the event of an impact (standard)
  • Seat belt pretensioners: During a collision, impact sensors initiate front seat belt pretensioners to remove slack in the seat belt system, thereby reducing the forward movement of the occupant's head and torso (standard)
  • Sentry Key engine immobilizer: Uses a key fob that has an embedded transponder with a preprogrammed security code to shut off the engine after a few seconds and discourage vehicle theft (standard)
  • Seat-mounted side pelvic-thorax air bags: Provide enhanced protection to the driver and front outboard passenger in certain impacts. Each side air bag has its own impact sensors that autonomously trigger the air bag on the side where an impact occurs. Standard side air bags are housed within the outboard side of each front seat (standard)
  • Side-curtain air bags: Provide enhanced protection to all outboard occupants (standard)
  • Side guard door beams: Provide occupant protection during a side impact (standard)
  • Supplemental turn signals: Located on the front fenders, the turn signals provide better notification to other drivers that the driver is about to make a turn or lane change (standard)
  • Three-point seat belts: Front seating positions and all rear seating positions have lap and shoulder belts (standard)
  • Tilt and telescoping steering column: Allows steering column to achieve a safe and comfortable driving position (standard)
  • Tire-pressure monitoring (TPM): Informs driver when tire pressure is too low. Pressure-sensor modules within the valve stems of all four road wheels send continuous radio-frequency signals to a receiver and the system. Individual tire pressure can be displayed in the EVIC (standard)
  • TomTom Navigation: This innovative navigation system features real-time traffic, real-time weather updates and more than 7 million points of interests
  • Uconnect 5.0 or 6.5: Integrates world-class infotainment and convenience technologies to keep passengers connected, comfortable and safe (standard)
  • Vehicle theft security alarm: Deters vandalism and theft, frequently lowering insurance premiums. System protects the vehicle from theft by monitoring door-ajar switches and the ignition circuit for unauthorized entry
  • Voice Command: An in-vehicle, voice-activated communication system that allows drivers to operate a Bluetooth compatible phone with their hands on the wheel and eyes on the road. When the Bluetooth phone is initially connected, the contact list is automatically downloaded, synchronizing as many as 1,000 phone book entries, which can then be selected by simply saying a contact name (standard)

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