Fiat 500 Forum banner

1 - 13 of 13 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
First year model after returning to the U.S.A. This car has been driven, and that is an understatement. It hasn't been flawless, but it has been reliable. Quirks do exist and I'll be honest about what they are up-front.
About my car:
It is a 2012 Fiat 500 Sport
It was bought new
Oil changes have been religiously done every 5000 miles
Oil has always been Castrol 5W-30 regular (not synthetic) oil. After 125,000 miles, it was switched to Castrol 5W-30 High Mileage regular oil.
I don't have any issue with synthetic oil, but I believe in sticking with one thing
This is a manual transmission car with a 5-speed stick
The back seats are a joke. I just laid them down and left it at that. Lots of hatch space works for me.
This car has seen duty of 95% highway driving and 5% sideroads that include limited gravel roads.
My car currently has 225,000+ miles on it.

Positive experiences are often left unmentioned. Because when things work, nobody has anything to say.

Negative experiences are usually the highlighted issues you see. That said, here are my negative experiences.
1) The electronics that open the rear hatch sometimes work, and sometimes not. This puts you in a position where you cannot easily retrieve, or even get out, stuff you placed in the rear hatch. It comes and goes. Sometimes things work, sometimes they won't. As much as I've attempted to look into this problem, I've never found a definite answer to the problem.
2) The AC unit is sketchy. Sometimes it works fine. Othertimes, it will fail to have the compressor kick in for no apparent reason. It isn't low on coolant, the pressure in the lines are fine. There aren't any leaks. But it doesn't work. Then, magically, it will start working again weeks later. Sort of like the rear hatch release.
3) As you might confirm from the last two mentioned issues, the 2012 Fiat 500 has some suspicious electrical issues. These can extend from the two discussed issues and include other unmentioned issues. Although, I'm one of the lucky ones. The two issues I mentioned are the only ones that bother me.

Major Maintenance that I've done:
Timing Belt - I had this changed late in the life of the car. It was replaced at 200,000 miles. The old belt was actually still in pretty good shape based on a visual inspection. Still, it was showing some of the tell-tale signs of an aging belt that needed replaced. Minor cracks and what-not on the outer surfaces. Otherwise, it was in decent shape. Still, you don't what to ever take too many chances with timing belts when you have an interference motor like this car has. (Okay, I know. Waiting to 200,000 miles to change the belt was taking a chance. I know. But I wasn't the one responsible for servicing this car at that time.)

If you have any questons about my Fiat 500 Sport with 225,000 miles and counting, put your comments below.

Best to everyone, Have a great day.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10 Posts
Hi,
I recently bought a 2012 Fiat 500 Sport manual in August. It had 103,000 miles. Beautiful car and in seemingly good condition. So far I have had to replace a frozen caliper for the parking brake and the starter which had to go in twice. Once for replacement and once to rewire the new starter because it had intermittent starting issues which were of course a pain. No other issues thus far. It drives well and all of the electronics work except for the key fob controlled rear hatch which I have to open manually. I am praying nothing else goes wrong for a while. You haven't had to replace the clutch yet? How often did you need to do brake maintenance, battery, and alternator replacements? I actually love the car. I run into a very brief grinding noise when putting it in reverse sometimes. Is this going to damage the clutch in the long run?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,407 Posts
225,000 miles, that's well done!! Mine (2013, bought new) just hit 95,000, so I have a long way to go to catch up with you! How is everything wearing? Mine looks generally okay, except for few bits and pieces, like the black trim in front of the sunroof is seriously showing wear, and the driver's seat is beginning to look a bit tired (and I only weigh 130lbs). Some rubber bits (particularly the rear side windows) are becoming a bit ratty, but my car always stays outside not matter the weather.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12,775 Posts
Sound like you got yourself a good one. My 500 over 9 years old.

Your Sketchy rear electronic, it was caused by the wiring harness connected to the rear hatch. The wiring is starting to fray. Poor design.

since you mainly do highway driving. Have you ever replaced any of the rear wheel bearing. How’s the outside tire wear on the rear wheel been. Have you ever installed the rear factory shims, to correct the issue. Any oil leaks from the engine valve cover. Front half shaft boots, in good condition?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
35 Posts
First year model after returning to the U.S.A. This car has been driven, and that is an understatement. It hasn't been flawless, but it has been reliable. Quirks do exist and I'll be honest about what they are up-front.
About my car:
It is a 2012 Fiat 500 Sport
It was bought new
Oil changes have been religiously done every 5000 miles
Oil has always been Castrol 5W-30 regular (not synthetic) oil. After 125,000 miles, it was switched to Castrol 5W-30 High Mileage regular oil.
I don't have any issue with synthetic oil, but I believe in sticking with one thing
This is a manual transmission car with a 5-speed stick
The back seats are a joke. I just laid them down and left it at that. Lots of hatch space works for me.
This car has seen duty of 95% highway driving and 5% sideroads that include limited gravel roads.
My car currently has 225,000+ miles on it.

Positive experiences are often left unmentioned. Because when things work, nobody has anything to say.

Negative experiences are usually the highlighted issues you see. That said, here are my negative experiences.
1) The electronics that open the rear hatch sometimes work, and sometimes not. This puts you in a position where you cannot easily retrieve, or even get out, stuff you placed in the rear hatch. It comes and goes. Sometimes things work, sometimes they won't. As much as I've attempted to look into this problem, I've never found a definite answer to the problem.
2) The AC unit is sketchy. Sometimes it works fine. Othertimes, it will fail to have the compressor kick in for no apparent reason. It isn't low on coolant, the pressure in the lines are fine. There aren't any leaks. But it doesn't work. Then, magically, it will start working again weeks later. Sort of like the rear hatch release.
3) As you might confirm from the last two mentioned issues, the 2012 Fiat 500 has some suspicious electrical issues. These can extend from the two discussed issues and include other unmentioned issues. Although, I'm one of the lucky ones. The two issues I mentioned are the only ones that bother me.

Major Maintenance that I've done:
Timing Belt - I had this changed late in the life of the car. It was replaced at 200,000 miles. The old belt was actually still in pretty good shape based on a visual inspection. Still, it was showing some of the tell-tale signs of an aging belt that needed replaced. Minor cracks and what-not on the outer surfaces. Otherwise, it was in decent shape. Still, you don't what to ever take too many chances with timing belts when you have an interference motor like this car has. (Okay, I know. Waiting to 200,000 miles to change the belt was taking a chance. I know. But I wasn't the one responsible for servicing this car at that time.)

If you have any questons about my Fiat 500 Sport with 225,000 miles and counting, put your comments below.

Best to everyone, Have a great day.
2012 Pop owner weighing in...My interior dome lights stopped working, unable to determine why, even after a thorough going-over by competent mechanic...key fob no longer electronically opens jack sh*t...oil light warning has never lit up ever...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Hi,
I recently bought a 2012 Fiat 500 Sport manual in August. It had 103,000 miles. Beautiful car and in seemingly good condition. So far I have had to replace a frozen caliper for the parking brake and the starter which had to go in twice. Once for replacement and once to rewire the new starter because it had intermittent starting issues which were of course a pain. No other issues thus far. It drives well and all of the electronics work except for the key fob controlled rear hatch which I have to open manually. I am praying nothing else goes wrong for a while. You haven't had to replace the clutch yet? How often did you need to do brake maintenance, battery, and alternator replacements? I actually love the car. I run into a very brief grinding noise when putting it in reverse sometimes. Is this going to damage the clutch in the long run?
I have not replaced the clutch. It's still original to the car. That said, I've always driven manual transmission cars my whole life. I'm very easy on clutches. I haven't replaced the alternator or starter either. I don't use the hatch for big car stereo systems, I find those will kill alternators pretty quickly. The battery has been replaced and I completely replaced the brakes on the car all around, not just pads, but everything. I did this because rotors looked a little thin to me, the mechanic said they still had a little life in them, but I went ahead with it anyhow. btw, I bought all the parts in advance online. This saved me several hundred dollars over the quote I initially got from the garage. In the end, I only ended paying about $100 in labor and I spent about $150 on the parts.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
225,000 miles, that's well done!! Mine (2013, bought new) just hit 95,000, so I have a long way to go to catch up with you! How is everything wearing? Mine looks generally okay, except for few bits and pieces, like the black trim in front of the sunroof is seriously showing wear, and the driver's seat is beginning to look a bit tired (and I only weigh 130lbs). Some rubber bits (particularly the rear side windows) are becoming a bit ratty, but my car always stays outside not matter the weather.
Wear and tear is about normal I think. To look at it from the outside it doesn't look any better or worse than most other 2012 Fiat 500's. The interior is holding up well too, except the boot for the shifter came loose then some guy was poking at it with his finger. I never bothered to fix it, but it is a bit of any eyesore.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Sound like you got yourself a good one. My 500 over 9 years old.

Your Sketchy rear electronic, it was caused by the wiring harness connected to the rear hatch. The wiring is starting to fray. Poor design.

since you mainly do highway driving. Have you ever replaced any of the rear wheel bearing. How’s the outside tire wear on the rear wheel been. Have you ever installed the rear factory shims, to correct the issue. Any oil leaks from the engine valve cover. Front half shaft boots, in good condition?
I get alignments done regularly, at least once every 1.5-2 years. Tire wear has always been even. I did have a rear wheel bearing start to go out, so I replaced the bearings on all four wheels. A lifetime of experience with cars has taught me to do things like this. Better to nip the problem early rather than find yourself with the car in the shop each time one goes out. As for oil leaks, the seal on the oil fill cap apparently started leaking once and the oil slowly accumilated in the top of cylinder 1 until it started shorting out the coil pack and boot. Occasionally I would smell a little oil burning as it would then leak a drop or two onto the exhaust. I assumed the car was just showing its age and burning a little oil. Once the coil pack for the cylinder could no longer provide spark to the plug, I took it into the shop where the problem was discovered and repaired. To my surprise and relief, it turns out my car does not burn any oil after all. The boots on the drive train are still in perfect working order. I check them each time I have the oil changed and I spray them with a conditioner that prevents them from dry rotting.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
713 Posts
What's that conditioner you're using? On the boots. I'd like to get some.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
What's that conditioner you're using? On the boots. I'd like to get some.
I've used a couple different things over the years. The best is a food grade 100% silicone spray lubercant. I recommend "food grade" so that you can be certain there aren't any petroleum byproducts mixed in. You don't ever what to use anything with petroleum products because it will damage the rubber boot. I've also used 303 leather/rubber/plastic conditioner as well. Since I've started doing this with my cars, I've never had CVC boot break, crack, or fail.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,407 Posts
I've used a couple different things over the years. The best is a food grade 100% silicone spray lubercant. I recommend "food grade" so that you can be certain there aren't any petroleum byproducts mixed in. You don't ever what to use anything with petroleum products because it will damage the rubber boot. I've also used 303 leather/rubber/plastic conditioner as well. Since I've started doing this with my cars, I've never had CVC boot break, crack, or fail.
That's actually wicked smart. Never ever in my over 30 years of driving life thought of that!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
713 Posts
Just got some food grade silicone spray at ACE Hardware. CRC brand. About $10. Home Depot didn't have it nor did the local auto parts store.
 
1 - 13 of 13 Posts
Top