Fiat 500L review - Practicality, comfort and boot space
Extra body volume makes the 500L vastly more practical than its city car sister
The Fiat 500L's raised ride height and almost 360-degree visibility make it very easy to drive around town, and it’s practical too. A roomy cabin seats five adults comfortably, and is equipped with 22 cubbyholes including a large glovebox, a couple of cupholders and roomy door bins.
The 500L measures up at 4,147mm long, 1,784mm wide and 1,665mm tall. That makes it 70mm longer than a Ford B-Max. The larger Fiat 500L MPW measures up at 4,352mm – making possible the extra row of seats.
Leg room, head room & passenger space
As the 500L is 59cm longer than the standard Fiat 500, there's plenty of space in the cabin. This means there's more than enough room for five adults as well as a decent boot volume – even six-footers are accommodated in the back seats.
There’s so much adjustability built into accommodation that Fiat has calculated there are 1,500 possible seat position combinations. Significant ones include the option of folding the front passenger seat down to form a picnic table, sliding the rear bench back and forth and reclining it.
The Fiat 500L’s rear bench seat folds completely flat and slides easily. The boot also has a three-level floor and the front passenger seat also folds completely flat, meaning the 500L can take loads of up to 2.4 meters.
There are 400 litres available with the seats in place so the boot is already bigger than the VW Golf’s – a car from the next class up. The 500L offers comfortably more than double the boot space of 500 city car, while folding the seats down gives you an impressive 1,310 litres.
You wouldn’t pick the 500L as a tow car though. Most models are limited to pulling 1000kgs, although the Trekking can pull 1,100kgs.
In this review
- 1VerdictThe retro-styled 500L is a spacious and distinctive alternative to the Ford B-Max, but its styling is divisive and the drive could be better
- 2Engines, performance and driveRoly-poly MPV handling means the 500L’s drive won’t put a smile on your face
- 3MPG, CO2 and Running CostsThe 500L should be pleasingly cheap to run, but rapid depreciation is the fly in the ointment
- 4Interior, design and technology‘Marmite’ looks mean the 500L doesn’t share the universal appeal of Fiat’s 500 city car
- 5Practicality, comfort and boot space - currently readingExtra body volume makes the 500L vastly more practical than its city car sister
- 6Reliability and SafetyThe 500L gets five stars for safety, but our Driver Power reliability rating throws up warning lights