2019 Fiat 500L – Should We Expect Changes?

News about the new 2019 Fiat 500L have been flying in the past couple of weeks and all indications point to the new model coming with a tried- and-tested retro design formula. But that’s not all, the new model will also employ a radical hybrid tech in place of the 1.3L MultiJet diesel engine.

Instead of the 1.3L MultiJet diesel engine will be a 48-volt hybrid technology. According to Fiat Chrysler boss Sergio Marchionne, the new model will make use of the hybrid technology in an effort to reduce the production of harmful NOx emissions. All vehicles across the range will feature more fuel-efficient and cleaner powertrain options.

The Fiat 500 nameplate enjoys quite a rather successful run in the market since it was reintroduced back in 2007. And all this while the nameplate only received one major refreshment that took place in 2016. That said, time is ripe for Fiat to embark on major design and performance updates if it’s to maintain and edge over the ever-mounting competition in the segment. And this couldn’t come at a better time than now with the rumors of an upcoming 2019 model.

For starters in this funky little car segment, the Fiat 500 and all its iterations including the 500L is a subcompact vehicle that is stylish and playful. And as you might have guessed correctly, it’s a small car dimensionally which means it’s not suitable for larger families that need a voluptuous cabin for utility purposes.

The 2019 Fiat 500L, just like previous iterations before it, is an affordable vehicle that continues to be an interesting option for buyers with a playful attitude. Some of its strong points include an easy-to-maneuver nature and stylish looks perfectly suited for urban settings.

But there’re a couple of drawbacks that are associated with owning one of these. Normally in this no-frills subcompact market, the vehicles are only meant for people who live in tight urban settings, where space is an everyday hustle. But even as you enjoy the hustle-less maneuvers around heavy city traffic and tight parking spots, the Fiat 500 and the 2019 Fiat 500L by extension deny you some features that you’d normally have in a ‘proper’ car.

First, it is painfully slow. You should probably take this info with a pinch of salt as Fiat is yet to announce what lies beneath its hood. But there’re no indications whatsoever that something much zipper is on the way. Again, the Fiat 500 design is rather ugly and lacks the contemporary look of a modern vehicle. This is subjective but believe us when we say it’s ugly. Other nits we managed to find include poor rear visibility, poor fuel economy, extremely slow base engine, and extremely limited headroom.

2019 Fiat 500L Release Date and Price

Still too early! Anyways, price should remain almost unchanged at $17,875. And the release date should probably take place sometimes in May 2018.

2019 Fiat 500L Exterior & Interior Changes and Facelifts

We can’t really tell much from the spy pictures making rounds on the internet as the camo is rather dense. Our photographers however managed to catch a few spots right. For instance, we can tell that the front fascia has gotten a bit of revamp. Specifically, the foglights seems to be integrated into each side, the air dam has grown a bit, and the radiator grille seems to have grown in width.

The same level of optimism – or lack thereof – cannot be said of the rear fascia as it was heavily cladded and none of the barraging photo sessions managed to show a clue either.

The Fiat 500l 2019 interior is also one with many mysteries. Nothing is yet to be offered by Fiat on the technology, features, and dimensions to be expected upon its release. But we are hopeful that Fiat is intending to make some strides on this area by offering a more conventional approach to design.

Engine Specifications & Output

If you’re one with expectations of a new upgrade, you might probably compare to a fat kid without a cake on his birthday. That’s how bad it should feel! Rumor mills have it that Fiat will still continue offering the 160-horsepower 1.4L MultiAir four-cylinder engine.

What shouldn’t however upset anyone is the impressive fuel efficiency that the whole range manages to offer. Regardless of choice, all models should return 29mpg on combined city and highway cruising.

Competition

When it comes to competition, the Kia Soul and the Nissan Versa Note come close. The Nissan Versa fits into a very small niche of weird little hatchback/MPV-type vehicles. Heck, it’s even smaller than the 500L, Countryman and Soul. But it compensates the lack of size with a favorable price point.

The other option buyers in this segment could go for is the Kia Soul. The Kia Soul, currently in its second generation, should by now be sporting updated looks as there were a couple of spy shots caught by our spy photographers a few months ago.

Other than the aforementioned, the other option would be the Mini Countryman. The countryman is a stylish option for people who might find the ugly looks of the 2019 Fiat 500L not worth it. For a base price that starts at $26,100, the Mini Countryman comes with a lot of appealing features on the table including a rather powerful, diesel engine that manages to crank a whopping 221 horsepower and 284 lbs. ft. of torque. These are impressive numbers considering the segment you’re dealing with here. Other good features include a stylish exterior styling, more space, and tons of options.

Conclusion

We really hope that Fiat is going to really work hard on the updates we hope the 2019 Fiat 500L will offer. The updates should touch on the MPV look in itself. It is far from pretty and Fiat could do so much to try and make it better looking. But most people buy it for its heritage rather than looks and it wouldn’t be surprising for FCA to return it the same way it was before.