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Old 02-02-2019   #1
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Hello!

Hey everyone, just found this place on Google and thought I'd sign up to learn a bit about these cars mostly the 500. I've almost done with my lessons and should be ready to take my test soon and the Fiat 500 is definitely the coolest ideal first car about so I got my sights set on one.

Hoping to learn what specs are the best, what to look for when checking a car out, common faults, etc but from reading so far it seems like these are some pretty reliable cars.

Looking forward to checking this place out!
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Old 02-02-2019   #2
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Re: Hello!

Hi and welcome.

The engines are great.

Got to be careful of age related stuff though.wiring. suspension.etc

Plenty of info in the 500 section

Charlie
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Old 02-02-2019   #3
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Re: Hello!

What's the best engine do you reckon? I've read some good things about the 0.9 TwinAir but they seem pretty rare compared to the 1.2 and 1.4's.

I love the black exterior with a red interior, absolutely beautiful that's the one I want.

Right now I'm in the position of getting a new job, been to a few interviews and signed up with agencies etc, once I've got something I will be snapping one of those up. Right now I'm only part time at a retail job so can't really afford to run a car but fingers crossed that changes within the next couple months!

Either will get a TwinAir 0.9 or 1.2, I'm sure they're both super cheap to insure being tiny little engines in a tiny little car. 0 road tax on the 0.9 is appealing though but then the others are only 30 anyway.

Had doubts about reliability on an Italian motor at first but everything I'm reading is positive and parts being super cheap all makes this very attractive for a first car!

Can't bloody wait to be driving one of these though. Even my parents like it, which is good for me as I can stick them on the insurance to get a lower premium (as second drivers obviously, I'm not doing anything dodgy).
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Last edited by Crazy But True; 02-02-2019 at 18:35.
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Old 02-02-2019   #4
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Re: Hello!

So,,, a 500 is not the ideal car to buy used, it often represents poor value for money, new maybe an option on PCP though road tax is 140 older cars often need quite some care, not an issue if you or someone you know can do it(fix it) for you.
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Old 02-02-2019   #5
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Re: Hello!

My dad's an expert when it comes to these things, he's been a cabbie all his life and always buys used cars so knows exactly what to check. Plan is to have him help me look over any car before I spend a single penny to buy it.

But from what I've read if one of these little beauties has been properly serviced as confirmed by the service history there should be little to worry about and parts are cheap if something does go wrong. And between myself and my dad doing basic repairs shouldn't be too hard as long as it's not difficult to actually get to everything in the engine. Like the new German cars that make it impossible to fix on your own. I understand this should not be a problem with a Fiat 500.

All that said I'm here to learn more about this car specifically so what in particular tends to go wrong on the Fiat 500 and what red flags are there I should be looking out for when inspecting a used one?

I'm guessing the obvious would be stay away from anything that looks too good to be true, e.g. a good one with low milage for a grand would obviously set off alarm bells.

Oh and what's PCP? Aside from a drug. I'm guessing it's a financing or leasing thing?
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Old 03-02-2019   #6
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Re: Hello!

Personal contract plan, or leasing.
What to look for, 1.2 engine generally fine, premature failure of suspension components (all) ,tailgate wiring will fail at some point, climate control cars have an issue with the temp control and if it breaks it's almost a sell the car failure, don't buy an automatic unless brand new, note newer cars with projector headlights have poor lighting, older cars with standard lights are much better unless HID was a factory fitted option.
I'm sure others will add to the list, parts are very cheap due to the "demand" most jobs are straightforward for even a modest diy person.
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Old 03-02-2019   #7
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Re: Hello!

Hi and welcome to the forum, and driving in general!

The 1.2 is pretty bullet proof, the T/A is pretty reliable, but more complex, we found when we had ours that it required a different driving style because of the way it "spins up".

I'd say that because you're a new driver a 1.2 would be best because its a more conventional car to drive. The insurance may kill off any ideas of a 1.4, I have heard that the 1.2 is cheap to insure for a new driver when compared to other small cars.

The wiring issue mentioned above is when the wire to the tailgate fails because it bends when its opened, don't go to a dealer with this, unless the car is still under warranty, an Automotive Electrician can fix it for a fraction of the cost. As with most things YouTube is also helpful.

The PCP is a way of putting a deposit down and a small-ish monthly fee on a new car for about four years, then the equity in the car may be used for a deposit on another one. Or you pay off and keep the car, or you walk away.

In reality most people trade in early before the time is up, we have done this and for us its fine.

Leasing pays a higher amount, but everything is paid for, except fuel, but its a fixed contract and you pay penalties if you want to change before the contract finishes.

We found buying an a PCP was cheaper than financing a second hand car, but that depends what deals are around.

It may be worth visiting a dealer to see what deals there are, they seem to have lots of 500's ins stock and its possible to get a deal.

Or you could secure a good deal on a pre-reg car, we got a 18 reg Tipo in December and saved 7,000! all because the 68 was current. So wait until after March, when it changes again and see what you can get.

You may be surprised.

The main thing and the hardest thing to do when buying your first car is not to get too excited and buy the first thing you see, if you're not sure, walk away. There are plenty of others around.

Actually, the main thing is to enjoy it!
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Last edited by RichardH13; 03-02-2019 at 09:42.
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Old 03-02-2019   #8
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Re: Hello!

Thanks to the both of you for the very detailed replies, it's appreciated!

It sounds like the 1.2 is the way to go. I agree the 1.4 is likely to run the insurance up too much for a new driver. And the initial draw to this car is I was surprised that something with so much style can be insured on the cheap (relatively speaking) for a new driver.

I rang an insurance company and they quoted me almost 3k for a 2007 1.4 A-Class! I like Mercs but it looks like the sensible thing to do is wait until I have some driving experience and NCB before buying one if even an 11 year old 1.4 A-Class is so pricey to insure! Plus parts, servicing, and road tax are clearly far far more manageable on a budget with the Fiat 500.

I'll give some insurers a ring again and see what quotes I get for a Fiat 500 but from chatting to a helpful bloke I'm expecting it to be about 1.2k. Keeping in mind I live in London which is bound to drive the price up. I was told there's no way a new driver will get a quote lower than that in London. But of course I'll ring around rather than going off the word of one company. That also wasn't counting putting anyone else on the policy which I plan to do.

The PCP option interests me especially if you can seriously save so much just because you got the previous reg on a new car! I'll look into it and crunch the numbers. If that seriously works out as cheaper than a used car I will consider it.

I know not to just get the first thing I see. I already have a pretty good idea what kind of spec I want, I won't just get anything, especially not if there's mechanical or electronic problems. I'm pretty set on black with red interior too.

I will certainly be buying a manual so no worries there.

Skimming around the forum I've also downloaded that ECU program for Windows. I'm very tech savvy so I shouldn't have any problem plugging one of my laptops into the car and checking electronics myself if needed.

Thanks again for all these highly detailed replies. It doesn't sound like there's really all that much to worry about on these. I'm excited!
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Old 03-02-2019   #9
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Re: Hello!

Consider a "black box" fitted this can also reduce your insurance?
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Old 03-02-2019   #10
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Re: Hello!

The quote I got was with a box.
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