Fiat 500e Winter Range & Banana Boxes Tested By Bjorn: Video

JAN 5 2019 BY MARK KANE 26

The stylish Fiat 500e received a rough review

The Fiat 500e didn’t receive much love from Bjørn Nyland. The car was disliked because its tiny size, poor standard equipment, low range without fast charging, just to name just a few.

In the most recent follow-up range test during the winter, Bjorn found out that you can drive about 100 km (62 miles) at 90 km/h (56 mph), although the battery capacity gauge tends to fluctuate a lot, which the general advice is not to go below 10%.

The Fiat 500e is a compliance car in the U.S. and despite Fiat being Italian company, there are no sales of 500e in Europe (Fiat will launch BEV in Europe in the future though).

Most of the 500e (probably over 90%) is sold in California, but a lot of them are then exported to Europe as used. The conventional Fiat 500 is a recognizable model so many would like to have an electric version – despite all the troubles with lack of dealer service for electric powertrain and Type 1 (SAE J1772) charging inlet (instead of European Type 2).

Bonus: Fiat 500e banana box test

The review (video is down below) and range test is supplemented by a proper banana box test, in which the 500e ranks at the bottom of the list. The 500e can take just one banana box in the trunk, or eight if you fold the rear seats.

Model X 5 seater: 10+1/28

Model S pre-facelift: 8+2/24

Model X 6 seater: 9+1/23

Kia e-Niro: 8/22

Model S facelift: 8/22

Nissan Leaf 2018: 7/21

Kia Soul EV: 6/21

Jaguar I-pace: 6/20

Hyundai Ioniq: 6/18

Nissan Leaf 2013: 5/18

Opel Ampera-e: 5/17

VW e-Golf: 5/16

Hyundai Kona: 5/16

VW e-up: 4/14

BMW i3: 4/14

Fiat 500e: 1/8

First review from January 2018:

Categories: Fiat, Test Drives, Videos

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26 Comments on "Fiat 500e Winter Range & Banana Boxes Tested By Bjorn: Video"

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Who would have known that Norway has compliance cars? I have owned two of these little Fiats, and Bjorn is right about the bare bones basic features of this car. The navigation has to be the worse program ever designed for a car. But for around town as a second car, this 500e served its purpose. (And the lease is dirt cheap.) One thing I will note is that bare bones in this car isn’t bad because it fits the overall design. The car is retro cute, and the plastic interior and dash works where the hard plastics in a Bolt do not. My daughter used it for commutes to college and I used mine for little jaunts around town where a Tesla isn’t needed. Funny that this Italian manufacturer has a made in Mexico 500e that is shipped to Europe. I thought this EV was only provided as a giveaway to California (and a few Oregon) drivers. To understand the ubiquitous-ness of this car in California, one has to realize that this car is the fifth or sixth largest selling EV in the U.S., despite essentially being sold in only one state. This EV was up to its peers… Read more »

Well, not really.
This car can drive you out 20 miles to other towns, and 20 miles back, and still have a 34 mile buffer. For daily trips it’s no problem.
It’s a perfect city, suburb, country drive car, for normal driving.
And as you can see it’s a lot more fun than driving a Chevy Tahoe bus on country roads.

The right tool for the job.
We don’t need buses to drive to other towns, get dinner at a nice restaurant and drive back, for 2 people.

Eduardo Pelegri-Llopart

We use our 500e as a two seater. Once every couple of months we use the rear seats, but otherwise, they are folded and the flat space is used for groceries or for the dog.

We have 50K miles on ours, it still handles nice, accelerates well and it is a great city & short-range car. It has limited range (80-100miles) but we didn’t buy it for that. And I think it is still the cutest EV out there. Yes, I’m biased 🙂

You’re not biased. It is the cutest EV. Only if they put DCFC on the thing… Where’s Quick Charge Power when you need them?

It’s a shame they did not include dc charging since the battery is prepared for it.☹️

There’s a recent post in the fiat500owners forum stating that QCP will be offering a CHAdeMO add on in the last 2019 timeframe.


Thx i will look it up right away 👍🏼

Who would buy a CHAdeMO add on for around $3,000 on a new car that should only be leased for 3 years? In fact, with some leases below, $100/mo., that’s nearly the cost of the entire lease. And I bet it would be hard to find one used 500e owner who would pay one third of the cost of the car for a CHAdeMO port.

It’s a great car. Got one here in Denmark too, we have this as our second ev. I recently sold our model s to get a model 3. While we wait we are using this as our only car, we have a newborn and I am surprised how well this little ev does the job. It easily gets 100km of range in winter. Due to it being a little high it can actually hold a lot of stuff with one seat down 😂

I don’t know… the Smart Fortwo EV gives it a run for the money in the cute department! And the range is just as short. 😉

I don’t know about Europe, but the EPA official range for the Smart is 63 miles. The EPA range for the 500e is 84 miles. A greater than 30% difference doesn’t appear to be equal.

The size of the two does not compare either. The smart is only 2 meters long. It actually goes for motorcycle when crossing bridges, so the toll is cheaper 👍🏼😀

Smart for two is a two seater. The fiat can actually fit 4 adults if nessesary. Having owned 4 smart cars i can verify that they are nothing a like. But the smart car is a very good car but it is intended for city driving only.

Shorter doens’t mean cuter. Smart’s chopped-in-half look is not too appealing. But round curves on 500e reminds me of a furry animal.

LOL! Most true. Although my co-worker think the 500 looks like a swollen tick, but hey, cute is in the eye of the beholder.

Just picked up one of these last weekend. ‘15 off lease in electric orange. It’s really fun and perfect for the city use (3rd car) we got it for. If I had paid anywhere near MSRP I would understand the negativity, but these leased for peanuts and can be had off lease super cheap. So cheap that the new stereo and floor mats I’m installing are significantly increasing it’s value, lol.

Congrats on the purchase! They are fun and the off-lease opportunity is advantageous. I like the orange ones too.

“We use our 500e as a two seater.”
Most of America use their cars as 1 seaters.
It seems the bigger the car the emptier.

Americans don’t “buy the right tool for the job”, they buy the sledge hammer and suffer.

Does anybody know How many boxes fit the model 3???

I think Bjorn should focus on the bigger car testing. Und leave this cute one to us. Also while not testing cars he could attend an Italien Design class to get more appreciation of the beautiful interior designer. Show me another car with such a friendly and harmonic dashboard.

IT does have a lot of interior style.
But, not many amenities of a modern EV.

It looks like Bjorn began 2019 in a bitchy and sloppy mood

considering the car is from the far distant 2013

A good city, metropolitan car not for long trips, really like the no frills….a good grocery getter!
As others have said, a car for a purpose and nice to see no useless console between the front seats….that gets Big points!

I’m on my second 500e lease in California. The first one was 0 down and 250 a month and this one is a 2016 and I got it for 100 a month zero down. It’s an unbeatable value and no not really the same class as the smart considering the fiat is 24 kw and the smart I think 16 kw. The fiat is like a 90% car all around it does 90% of what I need from a daily driver and is a lot of fun to drive. Smooth, easy to drive and quick at low speeds and cruises fine at highway speeds. Perfect for two people and a dog or groceries. Not very accommodating for people in the back seat! The old plug in Tom Tom should be discarded and enjoy the beauty of simple pleasurable transportation on the extreme cheap! When my lease is up later this year I may just buy a used one if model 3 still not available for 35 grand.

I got 70km with 50% left over but I was driving without the heater with a mix of mostly city and a bit of highway driving. Also drove in “economy” mode with my Gopedal. Its a very fun city car to modify too (rear seat delete, chassis stiffening mods, led lights, etc…). It’s a good first electric car to own until EVs become mainstream around 2025?

Just picked up a 2015 off of lease back in November, it has only 20900 miles. It’s in immaculate shape, has Italian retro-style and performs its jobs of taking one soul (me) on a 50 mile round trip daily commute efficiently with little waste and physical footprint. I’m in California, so the seat heaters are a wasted option here, a sunroof is the only option my example didn’t come with. I’m also,themown of a vintage mid-engined Fiat Betone X1/9. I must say the 500e, with its low COG, handles quite well, even on 185 cross section low rolling resistance tires.