The Fiat 500e, the Italian brand’s pert electric city car, has been approved for sale in Australia in a single variant.

    The company has already confirmed the 500e will come here during the first half of 2023.

    Government approval documents list just one model: a three-door hatchback with a 42kWh battery and an 87kW electric motor.

    This is the combination found in higher-spec models in Europe, and notably absent from the documents is the base 23.8kWh battery and 70kW electric motor combination offered in markets like Italy.

    With the bigger battery, the claimed electric range under the stricter WLTP cycle is 320km, while maximum DC fast charging is bumped from 50kW to 85kW.

    Fiat claims a 0-100km/h time of 9.0 seconds with a top speed set to 150km/h, and there’s a one-pedal driving feature.

    The 500e will become one of Australia’s smallest EVs, measuring just 3631mm long, 1529mm tall and 1683mm wide on a 2322mm wheelbase.

    Documents list a tare mass of 1290kg, which is quite a bit heavier than the dated petrol-powered 500 which has a tare mass of just over 900kg.

    It’s unclear whether Fiat will offer the cabriolet version of the 500e here. It offered drop-top versions of the petrol-powered Fiat 500 for just over a decade, before they were discontinued this year.

    Fiat also offers a third body style in left-hand drive markets, referred to as the 3+1. This is effectively the standard hatchback but with an additional door on one side, à la the defunct Hyundai Veloster.

    A features list notes the availability of two different levels of lighting – base and premium – plus a choice of 16- or 17-inch wheels and the option of a sunroof.

    Fiat offers the 500e in Europe with either halogen or LED headlights.

    Feature lists on these documents tend to be bereft of much detail, but we know the 500e comes standard in the UK with a 10.25-inch touchscreen infotainment system featuring satellite navigation and wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, plus a 7.0-inch digital instrument cluster and keyless entry and start.

    Available features include a wireless phone charger, panoramic sunroof, surround-view camera, heated and power-adjustable front seats, a six-speaker sound system and a reversing camera.

    The dashboard can be finished in the same colour as the body, or in an unusual finish called Technowood. There’s also a “braided” finish available.

    The 500e can also be had with blind-spot monitoring level 2 autonomous driving capability, with adaptive cruise control, lane centring and traffic jam assist, while all models come standard with autonomous emergency braking with pedestrian and cyclist detection, plus driver fatigue detection, lane-keep assist and traffic sign recognition.

    The Fiat still fell short of a five-star rating in ANCAP testing, instead receiving four stars.

    We’ve been waiting a while for the 500e, which was first revealed back in March 2020.

    As we missed out on the first generation of Fiat’s EV city car, the now not-so-new 500e will be the first EV offered by the brand in Australia.

    Those wanting a more powerful EV hatch will need to opt for the Abarth 500e, which has been confirmed for a late 2023 launch.

    It features the same 42kWh battery and 85kW DC fast-charging but a more powerful 114kW/235Nm electric motor, slashing the 0-100km/h time to a claimed 7.0 seconds.

    Abarth has also programmed a more distinctive propulsion sound and a choice of three driving modes.

    MORE: Everything Fiat 500

    William Stopford

    William Stopford is an automotive journalist based in Brisbane, Australia. William is a Business/Journalism graduate from the Queensland University of Technology who loves to travel, briefly lived in the US, and has a particular interest in the American car industry.

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