Fiat are planning to start sending out the third generation Fiat 500 to customers in March 2021, and made a big splash in the EV world by announcing that the car would cost just £19,995 when pre-orders open up in December.

Admittedly, that’s if you pick the least pricey option, an entry-level hatchback with… unremarkable stats and hardware, to say the least. Prices can rise by another £5000, depending on what options you pick, with options for a bigger battery and further extras on top of that. In fact, the more expensive “La Prima,” “Passion” or “Icon” models are available as convertibles as well as hatchbacks. 

So we finally have an affordable option for EVs without buying second hand. Hooray! And the car itself looks… pretty unimpressive, mechanically speaking. Boo!

I don’t mean that to be a real insult, you get what you pay for and the 500’s intentions are pretty clear. “Sure,” it seems to say, “you could buy a Tesla or similar lithium batmobile filled with Skynet-operated DVD players; or you can buy the Fiat 500 and not bankrupt yourself in the process.” So it’s not a car that’s going to blow any minds, but costing less than £20,000 is a big deal in EV circles. Hell, I legitimately respect Fiat’s strategy and restraint. No gimmicks, no dopey software or unnecessary trinkets to ramp up the price – it’s a serviceable car with everything you need to get around, not a home cinema that drives itself home.

Fiat’s EV line might not be groundbreaking in design, but the price could very will be a game-changer.

Still, there’s no denying that what’s under the hood is… unspectacular, to say the least. One can’t help but wonder if it’s powered by a hamster on a treadmill, but here are the details as we’ve got them so far.

Fiat 500 Action (from £19,995)

  • 23.8kW battery
  • 115 mile range
  • 0-60mph in 9.5 seconds
  • 84mph top speed
  • Bluetooth stereo options
  • Hatchback only

Fiat 500 Passion (from £23,495)

  • 42kW battery
  • 199 mile range
  • 0-60mph in 9 seconds
  • 93mph top speed
  • Cruise control
  • Touchscreen infotainment system
  • Hatchback or convertible options available

The other two options are the La Prima, whose main features are bigger wheels and a panoramic glass roof, and the Icon, which boasts keyless entry and built-in satellite navigation. Of course, they’re both more expensive, but still comparatively cheap while Tesla fights to get its flagship model under £70,000.