Our Cars: FIAT 500 1.2 Lounge

30 March 2016: FIAT 500 Gets its 8th Annual Service

The Details

Mileage 19,550
Claimed economy 55.3mpg
Actual economy 48.97mpg

Big year for the FIAT 500. In contrast to last year’s mere 307 miles, a massive 1,248 miles in 12 months, bringing the total up to 19,550.

And all without incident. The car is still on its original Michelin Energy tyres at 5mm, relieved slightly by a couple of winters on a second set of Michelin Alpins.

It had a new timing belt, tensioner and waterpump at its March 2015 service. A suspected radiator leak turned out to be a false alarm: probably a splash from when the waterpump was replaced.

FIAT 500 RO08 Yuasa Battery

I took the precaution of fitting a new Yuasa battery in November at a reasonable £57.10 inclusive at Mertyre, Chertsey.

Then, for its March 2016 service and MoT, I treated it to fresh brake fluid, new wipers and an aircon re-gas (for the first time in its life).

The MoT at friendly Parkside Garage, Hounslow was £45, the service £141.75, the re-gas £48, the brake fluid £24.95 and the wiper blades £37.25, plus an ‘environmental charge’ of £6.24 for disposing of old fluids, bringing the cost to a grand total of £303.19.

Can’t complain because, though it has only done 19,550 miles, it’s still an 8-year old car, and a FIAT, confounding anyone who thought that FIATs don’t last.

FIAT 500 RO08DZJ Under Wrap In Garage

Bodywork remains almost immaculate largely because for the past four years it’s been garaged with a cover over it. So it’s probably one of the cleanest 2008 FIAT 500s in Europe. (It spent its first four years on the street in a council estate.)

Time has moved on, of course, and FIAT fettled the 500 last summer with a few minor styling tweaks and a ‘connected’ system inside. But it’s still the same 9-year old body that has sold well over 100,000 in the UK alone.

FIAT 500 2015 TFT Speedo + Touchscreen

Mine doesn’t ride very well, due to the short wheelbase and the very basic FIAT Panda suspension underneath, a failing fixed in the 500C and all 500s from 2010. But it has truly fantastic seats with long, tilt-adjustable squabs that keep you comfortable despite the potholes.

FIAT RO08DZJ Cockpit 700

And its lifetime average fuel economy has been 48.97mpg, despite the absence of stop/start.

FIAT 500 RO08DZJ Rear Facing Field

« Earlier: FIAT 500: Suddenly needed again     Later: New Boots for 11 Year Old FIAT 500 »

Updates
HJ's 'spare' FIAT 500 doesn't get out much and barely covers 500 miles a year. Now approaching its 11th birthday it sailed through its MoT, got treated to a service and also a new set of Continental AllSeasonContact tyres.
30 March 2016: FIAT 500 Gets its 8th Annual Service
After a mammoth 1,248 miles, HJ's FIAT 500 gets its 8th Annual Service
HJ's FIAT 500 spends most of its life locked away in a garage, kept in case it's ever needed. Well, last week it was needed.
After not quite 400 miles over the last year, HJ's 'spare' Fiat 500 goes in for its annual service and MoT.
Another year and my 2008 FIAT 500 has spent almost all of it locked up in a lockup, emerging only for 30 mile runs to charge the battery.
HJ's FIAT has been busy recently and has now covered 17,234 miles
FIAT 500 on 15,000 mile tyres complately unfazed by torrential rain on the motorway.
Honest John's little used 500 gets its fourth year service and MoT and in that time nothing at all has gone wrong with the little Fiat.
Took the opportunity of a mild day to get the winter wheels and tyres fitted.
HJ's FIAT 500 finally gets to use its cold weather tyes.
HJ goes looking for snow in his Fiat 500.
HJ cleans his paintwork then coats his 500 with Autoglym High Def wax
Fiat 500 starts its Winter Tyre test.
Winter wheels arrive, winter tyres ordered.
FIAT 500 gets some winter tyres on its winter rims, and turns in a summer fuel economy of 56.2mpg.
Most recently I've had the opportunity to compare my 500 with the new, super-eco TwinAir version. On paper the TwinAir is much better, but what's the reality?
During my second year with the little Fiat 500 I drive the newer 500C cabriolet and the hot Abarth 500, both of which had their suspension improved over my older model.
My company bought the car for me in March 2008 for £9,470, including side bump strips and Italian Tricolor side stripes. Because it emits 119g/km of CO2 I was immediately able to write down 100% of the purchase price.
 

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