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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
an interesting read here about the success of the Fiat 500.

I know I've seen a lot of Fiat 500's, shocking to me since I never expected this car to be so popular.

A question asked in the quoted area below (from inside line) which i wanted to ask here was.....

Will the Fiat 500 be able to sustain it's success over the long term as Mini has over the course of a decade?




I'm seeing the Fiat 500 everywhere. OK, so maybe not in the frequency they were in the above segment of Top Gear, but in the last three weeks I've been seeing a whole heap of 500s both here in Los Angeles and in Toronto. Sure, the 500's going to stick out a lot more than the countless brand-new Corollas that no doubt drove by me in the same period of time, but August sales back up the notion that the little Fiat isn't a bust. The 500 had double the sales of the Mini Cooper.

I wonder, however, if the 500 will be able to sustain its success over the long term as Mini has over the course of a decade. Or, will it fall out of favor once its hip factor declines (see Beetle) or when a limited number of potential customers finally get their car (see Thunderbird or Smart).

If I were a betting man, I'd say it'll go the way of the Mini with two qualifiers: It doesn't prove to be woefully unreliable and they come out with different variants to keep things fresh (cough, Abarth).

James Riswick, Automotive Editor @ 8,640 miles
 

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If what I read here is even half true, I don't think avoiding being "woefully unreliable" is a valid requirement for being as successful as the mini.

I love everything about the 500, more than I used to love the Mini (thank goodness I never owned one!), and so I believe that it will last a while. The new Beetle had the cute, but it never really struck me as a car I needed to drive.
 

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Here in Pennsylvania there's definitely a scarcity of FIAT 500s. I recently drove all the way across PA (300 mi.), spent 4 days in NJ, and all the way back to Western PA without seeing one FIAT 500 over the entire trip. The same thing happened on a recent trip to Indiana (400 mi.). By the way, the FIAT performed very well on these trips. Problem one: we have about 15,000 sq.mi. in Western PA with no FIAT studio yet.

In PA, IN, and OH it seems that, if you're not driving a Pickup or SUV, you're un-American. They just don't get it. The most common remark I hear regarding my FIAT is: "but it's so small." I rarely heard that over the 3 years I drove a MINI. Go figure...

The FIAT 500 deserves much success in North America. It's a better small car package than the MINI will ever be -- and it has more class.
 

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Seen 3 all together in 3 months, on the road. This is not counting 40+ ones on the dealers lot up the street from me. Fiat really needs to advertise this wonderful little car.
 
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