July unveiling of all-new Fiat 500

July unveiling of all-new Fiat 500

070321_F_500_01The fourth of July is a significant date for the Fiat 500 as all-new model will be announced.

Fiat says no other information is available at this time but full details will be available on the day.

The original 1957 model and the 2007 FIAT 500 were also both born on this datE Developed by legendary engineer Dante Giacosa, the 1957 FIAT 500 was designed to be as affordable to buy and run as possible.

It was small because metal was expensive in post-war Italy and the more of it that was used, the more weight the car gained and the more performance and fuel was needed to propel the car along.

It was this kind of pragmatism which led to the adoption of a full-length canvas roof on early models and also in the interests of costs and packaging, a rear-mounted, air-cooled, two-cylinder 479cc engine was chosen.

Producing just 13 horsepower, the 470kg FIAT 500 was capable of just over 50mph but it was extremely fuel efficient and required only the most basic maintenance.

At a time when the average Italian factory worker earned no more than 50,000 Lire per month the FIAT 500 cost 490,000 Lire when it went on sale.

The first-generation of FIAT 500 amassed more than 3.6 million sales over its 18-year lifecycle, during which it remained largely faithful to Giacosa’s original design and engineering principals.

The FIAT 500 evolved into the FIAT 126, which was subsequently replaced by the FIAT Cinquencento and Seicento city cars – but the original 500 never really disappeared from view in the way so many other cars do.

The low running costs and robustness of the original 500 meant that many remained in daily use long after they rolled off the production line.

On July 4 2007 the FIAT 500 was reborn – true to the philosophy of the 1957 car – affordable and practical, of course, but also stylish and distinctive in a thoroughly modern package.

The engine might have moved to the front and it may have had seven airbags and Blue&Me connectivity but its design was a homage to the original car bestowing it with the same universal appeal globally.

Marketed in 100 countries and with more than 1.5 million sales globally the next chapter in the FIAT 500 story is about to begin.

On July 4 2015, FIAT will unveil the new FIAT 500 for the first time.

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