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Old 11-01-2018   #1
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Smile 0UR500 entering its tenth year...

Happy New Year to you all, especially the forum regulars who contribute so much knowledge for the betterment of 500 drivers everywhere

0UR500, now entering the tenth year (it’s a 2008 1.4 Lounge Dualogic) went for its annual Warrant of Fitness the other day - the 40-minute equivalent of a fairly strict MOT inspection... and passed as usual, except for a screw in a rear tyre. Which was easily removed and patched on the inside. The tyre still had 30psi in it.

That was unexciting enough, wasn’t it? You were hoping for at least a worn strut mount or a brake balance problem?

Now approaching 120,000km and no problems to report in the last year, nothing at all.

I put a new battery in at the start of winter, as a precaution, as the voltage of the original Marelli battery suddenly dropped to 12.1, even after a ‘recondition’ charge on a charger. I reasoned that with no faults evident, the original was getting a bit tired and it was as well to avoid a failure. Which we did.

Honestly this would have to be the most trouble-free car I’ve ever owned - and some have been practically brand-new - we bought this at six years old and 75,000km and it has been an excellent choice. Originally a ‘backup’ car, it quickly took on most of the commuting duties (including a once-a-week 300km return trip) and it seems to have thrived on the continuous use. I suppose lately the Giulietta has made more of the longer trips with my other half, but I still don’t hesitate to jump in the 500 as I prefer the smoothness of the non-turbo engine and the Dualogic (driven manually) rather than the MultiAir and TCT auto which conspire to make smooth driving difficult in the Giulietta.

As a reward for its excellent behaviour, I treated the 500 to a two-day clean, clay-bar, polish, and sealant on the paintwork. Couple of pictures below. While parked in the small country town of Morrinsville today, a guy on the pavement was looking quizzically at the badge and scratching his head... “Is it a FIAT?”, he says, “that’s hardcase, I had one in the 70’s, never seen one since, how old is this and what motor does it have...”

Strangely the fuel economy has been improving lately, even with the air conditioning cranking (I’ve never been able to detect a difference with it on or off), I got an amazing 5.5L/100km on a 30km trip recently, which previously was 6.1. I put this down to the tyres going hard as they age; it will probably be time for new tyres by this time next year; I’ve moved them front-to-rear so the tread wears evenly. We’ve had nearly 40,000km so far.

A small fly in the ointment; the cost of the annual vehicle license (road tax) has increased by $40 this year (from $80 to $120) as a result of the safety rating being no longer a five-star perfect score. That’s the result of Euro NCAP re-testing the current 500 and deciding that, lacking the autonomous braking and lane assistance/driver alert features, etc. the car is only worth three stars now. I didn’t know such a silly decision half a world away would hit me in the pocket, but it has! The world we live in

-Alex
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Likes Ralf S., MarginWalker, Pauk8, UFI, Tom95 and 2 others liked this post
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Last edited by alexGS; 11-01-2018 at 14:32.
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Old 11-01-2018   #2
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Re: 0UR500 entering the tenth year...

Congrats! I guess the less wet climate contributes to parts longevity...

Here's to another ten!
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Old 12-01-2018   #3
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Re: 0UR500 entering its tenth year...

Nice! Still looks absolutely pristine
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Old 13-01-2018   #4
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Re: 0UR500 entering its tenth year...

Quote Originally Posted by Tom95 View Post
Nice! Still looks absolutely pristine
Thanks! The interior is also holding up really well, no sign of wear on the seats, though I might treat it to replacement mats as theyíre very thin and starting to look a bit shabby. The best thing I bought was a new (genuine, perforated) steering wheel when we first got the car. Itís amazing what difference that makes to the perception of the carís condition. Polishing windows is another great value improvement

-Alex
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Old 14-01-2018   #5
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Re: 0UR500 entering the tenth year...

Still looking great, I got a leather steering wheel cover, that required stitching together round the wheel, its much nicer than the somewhat hard plastic on our pop and is generally nicer to use was only about £10 for the kit.
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