Time has served the Fiat 500 well, of that there’s no doubt. On sale in a grandiose variety of forms since 2007, the Fiat 500 is still out there looking good. Yes, still one of the most fashionable and iconic small cars around.
Fiat, however, is not standing still and two new top of the range versions of the 500 have now hit the catwalk. Enter the Fiat 500 Star and Fiat 500 Rockstar, two upscale variations on the 500 theme for the 2020 model year, designed to create a new buzz and entice new buyers into the fold.
How so? Well, Fiat’s research has revealed that two-thirds of 500 buyers are female. At the same time, two-thirds of the sporty Abarth 595 buyers are male.
So here’s an idea. How about creating a couple of new high-end versions of the 500 even out that buyer profile and expand market share at the same time?
Drumroll then, for the 500 Star, positioned above the 500 Lounge as a newborn fashionista with 16-inch alloy wheels, fixed Skydome glass roof and sleek chrome insets flanking the front grille, plus fog lamps.
A new metallic White Stella finish, embellished with nuances of pink, is also unique to the 500 Star. Alternatively, other shades (with cool names) are also up for contention: Gelato white; Carrara Grey; Vesuvius Black, Pompei Grey, Opera Bordeaux, Colosseo Grey, Epic Blue or Ice White.
Special editions, colour and trim, have long been part and parcel of the Fiat 500 success story (with Fiat now closing in on 3 million units sales since 2007).
At Fiat’s launch event in Turin, media were given carefully shepherded access to the ‘Colours and Materials’ section within FCA’s Design studio, Centro Stile, to see how it comes together.
We discover that Fiat has produced more than 30 special editions of the diminutive 500 through the years, with upscale collaborations via Riva, Gucci, Diesel and Collezione among that group. Now the 500 Star and 500 Rockstar join the growing ensemble.
The sportiest of the two debutants, the Rockstar builds on the 500 Sport package and has been conceived, essentially, to get more guys into the Fiat 500 franchise.
It’s immediately recognisable via its new shade of almost military matt green paint. Fiat calls this Green Portofino and, yes, in the metal, it really is pretty distinctive.
Or you can order the 500 Rockstar with one of the other exterior colours as per the 500 Star, if that’s your choice. Green Portofino, however, is the launch theme colour and surely gives the 500 a new edge.
Inside, the 500’s cabin remains essentially the same, but here again, Fiat’s artisans have been at work.
With the 500 Star, there’s the choice of two colour combinations, white sand and black, also featuring a new Matelassé finish detailed in eco leather plus a Bordeaux-embroidered 500 logo.
The 500 dashboard fascia, hitherto the same colour as the bodywork, can also change. Choose between White Sand with a pearly finish or Matt Bordeaux.
In the case of the 500 Rockstar, pinstriped seat fabric appears, edged by side panels with grey or blue details, with the top part of the seat finished in eco leather.
Once again, you have a choice of dash tops: matt dark green or satin finish graphite to adorn your 500 Rockstar.
On the tech front, both Fiats, in company with all 500 variants from the Lounge trim upwards, now feature a Uconnect 7-inch HD Live touchscreen with audio and smartphone connectivity to Apple Car Play and Android Auto.
And the price? Well, they start at £15,395 OTR for a 1.2-litre 69hp Star. The Rockstar with the same engine kicks off at £15,565.
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