The 2012 Fiat 500C Cabrio utilizes a retractible textile roof; a design that has solid European roots. The Cabrio roof first appeared in the 1920s on many German automobiles and was often called a “Webasto” after the German company that was the main supplier for the assembly. Cabrios are really fun cars because the fabric roof can usually be fully retracted revealing what is essentially one giant sunroof -the entire top of the car, in fact.
Continuing the fun-loving Cabrio tradition is the 2012 Fiat 500C Cabrio. This car is visually very similar to the other Fiat 500 coupes but offers the Cabrio two-layer cloth roof assembly that that pulls back from the windshield and folds up like an accordion on the rear deck. Inside the Cabrios is just as nice too. Often the designers of Cabrio models opt for more basic interiors. Fortunately, the designers at Fiat made the decision to leave the interior untouched in the Cabrio vs the fixed roof models. This means when the Cabrio roof is fully closed, the car interior has the “fully-appointed” look and feel of a comfortable little fixed roof coupe.
In the power department, the Cabrio models sport the same 101-hp MultiAir four cylinder engine as the rest of the 500 line and can be optioned with either a five speed manual or six speed transmissions. The 500Cs EPA fuel economy is rated 30 mpg city/38 highway for the manual gearbox and 27/32 for the automatic.
The 500C is more expensive than the standard 500 Sport Hatch models, in fact, the actual price for this “full internal sunshine”, is some $4000 over the 500 hatch models; a bargain some would say considering how much more panache a full Cabrio has. The base 500Cabrio is the Pop model and it includes 15-inch steel wheels, the five-speed manual, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, sporty cloth seats, power windows and Bluetooth. Options include $500 15-inch sport wheel wheels (in place of the standard steel wheels), a $1250 upgraded Bose sound system with satellite radio. For an additional $1000 one can select the six speed auto matic transmission.
The next step up in the the Cabrio lineup skips right over the Hatch’s Sport model and moves to the Lounge. For $24K, the striking Cabrio Lounge adds an automatic gearbox, Bose sound system, handsome 15-inch styled wheels, fog lights, internal climate control and “premium” cloth seats. In addition to the 14 exterior colors and 12 interior combos offered, the 500C can be equipped with either a black, red, or brown top. If you max out a lounge, you can rack up some $27K.
Yes, the additional money for what is effectively a large cloth sunroof is substantial but the 500C is super-cute and super-chic. If you want to discover a really neat little car, give it a look. For anyone in the Dallas-Ft.Worth area, the dealership you want to visit is Holt FIAT of Texas. The folks at Holt will be glad to let you test drive a Cabrio and discover the fun for yourself!