Friday – Cute Alternative


The fact that I’m already looking for reasons to drive the 500 and it’s only Friday speaks volumes. A 875cc car with modest performance and a wacky paint job might not sound that exciting. However, the appeal of this tiny Fiat – based on the same running gear as the Panda – is much greater than the sum of its parts.

You don’t need to be a fashionista to be seduced by the retro curves and gorgeous interior either. Just look at the huge number of 500s there are out there. Fiat has taken a healthy slice of Mini sales from BMW and is now copying the German manufacturer with a stretched version and the racy Abarth too.

True, the 500 lacks macho appeal but it does put a smile on your face every time to climb inside. It’s not just ‘a girls car’ either, although you can sort of understand why hairy-armed blokes wouldn’t be seen dead driving one.

I’ve got an open mind on the supermini. I want to know if it’s a practical alternative to the lower-priced Panda and whether it’s worth the £12,000 price tag too.

Today Jessica and I will head down to the Pembroke Arms in Wilton, Wiltshire, with a large Hungarian Viszla on the back seat. Not sure many dog owners would choose a 500 for transport but nothing ventured!

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