July 4th 2007 was a significant day as, 50 years after the original, Fiat released the new Fiat 500.
Fiat Chief, Sergio Marchionne, was widely quoted "I want Fiat to become the Apple of cars" and “the Cinquecento will be our iPod". Is it IT irony that when you connect an iPod to your new 500, seen right, it’s hooking into a Media & Navigation system that runs on Windows Mobile (note the logo)!
Fiat 500 Microcar Powered by Windows Mobile
The new Fiat 500 was recently revealed and one of the most noticeable features of the tiny hatchback is the Microsoft logo in the cabin..
Software Development : Blue & Me - Fiat and Microsoft Collaboration
Instead of costly and rigid hardware, Fiat Auto and Microsoft is offering a platform that can be adapted to most mobile phones, digital media players and other mobile devices. The customer is free to change them with new models without compromising compatibility with the car.
Fiat wants Cinquecento to be the iPod of cars - Jul. 4, 2007
Fiat hopes its new version of the three-door Cinquecento will become as popular as Apple's device.
Marchionne was really referring to the new 500 joining the old one, the legendary Bambino, as a design icon. There is no doubting they’ve done a stunning job bringing the classic 500 lines into the 21’st century. It was a challenge when you consider the original was a tightly packaged rear engine car, the new one is front engined & front wheel drive.
I love that in spite of being 5 star safe, front wheel drive, and having 21’st century packaging the 500 is still small. It’s about 100mm shorter than a new Mini, which isn’t very mini. With around 69 – 100bhp from 1.2 or 1.4 Litre engines it should zip around town, certainly more fun than a Prius. If that’s not enough wait till the 500 Abarth (seen testing here) arrives with a rumoured 1.4 Turbo and 140+bhp.
There is more on the most important car since the invention of the wheel on my other blog. I can’t wait for the New Zealand launch!