How Long Do Fiat 500 Last?

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Originally launched as the Nuova 500, which was intended to succeed the Topolino lineup, the Fiat 500 made its debut in 1957 and was a small and inexpensive car that was mostly 2 door car.

The new Fiat 500 is now a 4-seater sub-compact car and offers much more utility than its older generations.

Since the last many people heard of this car was back in 1975, it is justified to ask how long do Fiat 500 last.

Unfortunately for them, the Fiat 500 does not provide a lot of longevity, only lasting 250,000 miles at most while breaking down as early as 80,000 miles.

On average, you should be around 120,000 years or more, depending on how you treat the car.

If you are unsatisfied to hear just how long the car can last, do not immediately write it off as with the proper care, treatment, and habits, which I will mention in this guide, you should be able to get a better lifespan from the vehicle so make sure to read till the end before you decide anything.

What Is The Average Life Expectancy Of A Fiat 500?

Wondering what the average lifespan of the Fiat 500 is? Read my in-depth guide to learn about it

Many factors go into how long a car can last, which I will discuss further in this article.

The lowest you can expect your Fiat 500 to go is 13 years which is quite standard for most compact cars as it translates to 200,000 miles at least.

The real mileage comes when you take the best care of the car, and that way, you can stretch it up the lifespan to 250,000 miles which should add a few more years to the initial lifespan of the car to 16+ years which is much more competitive with the other cars in the market which can easily stretch up to 300,000 miles.

Since the topic is other cars, let’s see how they do against this one.

Does Fiat 500 Last Longer Than Other Similar Vehicles?

The absence of this car for a large period has allowed other vehicles to creep up and capture the subcompact car market.

This has severely detracted attention away from the Fiat 500 and towards other vehicles, which have been able to amass a lot more popularity and is only getting higher.

However, is this popularity justified?

Many people will argue that there are a lot of much better and more reliable vehicles available on the market. Because of this, I decided to compare this car to some of its direct competitors.

Here, I will compare the Fiat 500 to 3 extremely popular vehicles and see which of them can last longer.

Since I will be judging the cars to figure out their longevity, I will only consider factors that influence the cars’ lives.

1. Fiat 500 Vs. Mazda MX 5 Miata

The first car that I decided to compare with the Fiat 500 is the Mazda MX 5 Miata, a very reliable subcompact car.

  • Coming back after a long time, the Fiat 500 could not generate as much reliability among its users as the Mazda MX 5 Miata, which is evident with various sources favoring the Miata.
  • Due to its lack of consistency, the Fiat 500 cannot last as long as the Mazda MX 5 Miata, which can consistently reach 200,000 miles.
  • The first model of this car since its discontinuation was met with a lot of scrutiny, while the rest of the models were quite tame, but when compared to the Mazda MX 5 Miata, it has a lot of issues with its name.
  • Being almost $100 cheaper to fix and maintain than the Fiat 500, the Mazda MX 5 Miata is much cheaper than the average subcompact car.

In this first comparison, it is clear that the Fiat 500 could not compete against the Mazda MX 5 Miata and is neither as reliable as it nor as long-lasting.

2. Fiat 500 Vs. Toyota Yaris

The next car to go up against the Fiat 500 is the Toyota Yaris, a subcompact car lineup that is less than two decades old but has a lot of popularity, especially in recent times.

  • The Fiat 500 could not hold against the Toyota Yaris when it comes to reliability, as the Yaris is widely regarded as one of the best and most reliable subcompact cars you can buy in this day and age.
  • As to be expected which such reliability, the Fiat 500’s low lifespan cannot hold up against the Toyota Yaris, which can easily pass 300,000 miles and reach 250,000 miles consistently.
  • Both the cars are evenly matched when it comes to problems and issues, with both the Fiat 500 and the Toyota Yaris having two problematic models only.
  • When it comes to fixing these models, this car again loses to the Toyota Yaris, which is the cheapest sub-compact car you can get.

Seeing the results from these comparisons, it should be quite evident that the Toyota Yaris is on a completely different level than the Fiat 500.

Related: How Many Miles Will A Toyota Yaris Last?

3. Fiat 500 Vs. Honda Fit

This final comparison that I will write is the Fiat 500 with Honda Fit, which is Honda’s most popular subcompact car lineup.

  • The Fiat 500 cannot reach high spots n reliability lists, while the Honda Fit can consistently reach the top 10 spots on most reliability lists.
  • The Fiat 500 is once again beaten by its competitor, in this case, the Honda Fit, by being much more long-lasting, reaching 300,000 miles.
  • On the matter of issues, it seems that this car comes out on top compared to the Honda Fit, which has much more problems overall.
  • This, however, does not change the fact that the Fiat 500 is still much more expensive to repair and maintain than the Honda Fit, which has a much lower cost to fix.

Seeing all 3 of these comparisons, it is obvious that the Fiat 500 is by no means the most longevity or reliable vehicle.

However, it is still good enough to be compared to these amazing vehicles, so it is not a total loss for the Fiat 500.

Related: How Long Does A Honda Fit Last?

Life Expectancy Of Fiat 500 Car Parts

The life expectancy of the Fiat 500 is quite standard compared to most sub-compact vehicles, but the car’s life depends heavily on how it is treated.

A major factor that can affect the car’s life is the components of the car itself, which must be taken care of to make sure that the entire car is working as intended.

Each car component has a specific function that it must carry out perfectly if the car wants to function properly.

Hence, the maintenance of these components is necessary if you want your car to last the maximum amount of time possible.

To help you, I will be mentioning the various parts of the Fiat 500, which you should take special care of, and mention ways you can increase their lifespan.

Average Lifespan Of Fiat 500 Brake Pads

The lifespan of the Fiat 500’s brake pads is quite similar to the lifespan of most brake pads available in today’s market and found on other cars.

They are usually able to reach an average of 35,000 miles, which should last users around two and a half years of usage before needing to be replaced.

Responsible owners can increase this to 3 years if they avoid excess wear and tear on the brake pads. This can be achieved by using the brakes properly.

You must avoid using the accelerator when using the brakes and use engine braking more to alleviate stress from the brake pads.

If you find your brake pads wearing out too often, try to change how you drive, adopting a much slower driving style to prevent further wear and tear.

Average Lifespan Of Fiat 500 Battery

As with most car batteries in today’s market, the Fiat 500’s batteries can easily last you an average of 4 years with a give and take of one year, depending on how well it is taken care of.

It should be easily able to output 45,000 miles at the least.

If you find yourself changing the battery after less than three years, a few things you can do to prevent it from happening again is to firstly make sure that the battery itself is securely fastened so that it does not vibrate and get damaged.

Next, you must use the headlights and in-door lights sparingly as they can also tax the battery.

Finally, you must make sure that the battery is well charged, so avoid quick rides and try to drive your car for a decent amount.

Average Lifespan Of Fiat 500 Tires

The tires of the Fiat 500 have relatively low durability lasting only 2 to 4 years tops with an average of 30,000 miles which is slightly less than its competition.

This means that the tires need a lot of care if you want them to last. This can be done by regularly visiting the mechanic and having them re-align the tires every year or so.

During these visits, you can also have the tires re-filled with air and rotated.

The most important thing you can do is change your driving style by avoiding rough roads and hard brakes, which would wear out the tires.

Average Lifespan Of Fiat 500 Transmission

As is the case for most transmissions, the Fiat 500;s transmission can easily last the owner’s entire lifespan of the car as long as there are no problems or defects.

To prevent any such issues from arising and making sure the transmission stays healthy, you should adopt good habits like only switching from drive to reverse (and vice versa) when the car is completely stopped, warming the car up before driving and having the transmission fluid flushed regularly.

Average Lifespan Of Fiat 500 Spark Plugs

While owners have stated that their Fiat 500’s spark plugs have lasted around 50,000 miles, most sellers and experts state that you should replace them every 30,000 miles.

This allows an average of 40,000 miles of service, equating to around three years of service. If you want long-lasting spark plugs, you should invest in higher durability.

Spark plugs made of iridium can last up to 200,000 miles. If you wish to make your current ones last, regular servicing should do the trick.

Average Lifespan Of Fiat 500 Key Fob

Not a lot can be said about the key fob of the Fiat 500 as the device relies on a small battery which should last you 3 to 4 years or around 50,000 miles of service.

The key fob itself can last even longer, only requiring that you replace the battery.

If you wish to make sure that the battery lasts, try to only use the key fob when you know you are in the range of the key fob and activate it on the first try.

What Is Good Mileage For A Used Fiat 500?

Considering the Fiat 500’s short and inconsistent lifespan, it would be ill-advised to buy an older and used model of the lineup.

However, if you cannot get yourself a new model and are set on purchasing a used Fiat 500, then make sure that you get it for as low mileage as you can.

The optimal mileage to purchase a used Fiat 500 would be around 50,000 miles which should be a decent enough mileage for you to purchase the car, drive it for a substantial time and avoid any major problems.

If you find yourself eyeing a model that is in great condition but is around, let’s say, 100,000 miles, this model can still be considered, but always make sure that the car’s components are in good condition.

How To Increase How Long Your Fiat 500 Last

By reading the tip above, you should have no issues making sure that the parts and components of the Fiat 500 stay in their absolute best condition.

This should automatically give your car a significant boost in its lifespan, and you should also see a reduction in problems that would otherwise lower the life of the car.

That being said, there is always room for more improvement, which is why I am listing further methods you can employ to make sure your Fiat 500 lasts even longer.

  • Keep a close eye on all the components of the car.
  • Regularly visit the mechanic for maintenance and servicing.
  • Change the oil, transmission fluid, and other liquids of the car frequently.
  • Use high-quality oil.
  • Visit the mechanic as soon as you suspect any problems.

By following these tips, your car will not only perform its absolute best but will do so for as long as it possibly can before requiring fixes that are just uneconomical to perform.

Problems That Limit The Life Of Your Fiat 500

After its revival in 2012, this car was off to a rocky start with its new debut model in the same year, which had the most problems in the entire generation as of yet.

The rest of the models of the Fiat 500 have little to no issues at all.

The problems which were present in the model are major issues that can significantly reduce the life of this car which is why I will be mentioning them here so that you know what to expect:

  • Premature ball joint wear.
  • Electrical malfunctions.
  • Electrical shortages.
  • Pressure plate failure.
  • Erratic shifting.

Issues such as the ones affecting the electrical systems of the Fiat 500 can easily damage other components of the car, which can significantly reduce the life of the car.

Other problems found in the transmission can also lead to a major decay in the life of the component, which may cost a large amount of cash to fix.

What To Look For When Buying A Fiat 500

The Fiat 500 has come a long way since its discontinuation and has made a lot of owners happy by providing a comfortable and reliable vehicle that includes a lot of different features and user-friendliness, which make it great to purchase if you find one in good condition.

However, there are always a few things you should be on the look for when considering a new car.

Here are a few things you should be looking for when buying a Fiat 500, brand new or otherwise:

  • High-performance model.
  • A model with improved fuel efficiency.
  • Vehicle service history (if any).
  • Electric models.
  • Turbo engine.
  • Good condition.
  • Low mileage (if purchasing used).

Among the various models of this car, you should definitely keep an eye out for the ones which have better fuel efficiency and are both in good condition and less driven.

High-performance trims are well received, while the electric models can also help you save on fuel.

Models with the Turbo engine can also provide a lot of performance which is why you should definitely get one.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1. Is The Fiat 500 A Reliable Car?

For the most part, this one is a very reliable car and should not cause you any sorts of problems or issues throughout the lifespan of the car.

While the life of the car itself can vary based on how good you take care of the vehicle, most of the time, the car is quite reliable due to the variety of safety features and user-friendly nature.

You can expect the car to provide you with a quality experience that should last you a long time.

Q2. Does Fiat 500 Have A Lot Of Problems?

Most models of this car are devoid of problems, for the most part, having the odd issue here and there.

The most problematic model of the lineup is the 1st model since the revival of the series, which suffered from a myriad of transmission issues, shifter problems, and various electrical issues, which made the car very annoying to drive and significantly impacted the driving experience.

The most common issue this one has had to face is bad pressure plates and the turbo compressor breaking apart.

Q3. Is It A Good Idea To Buy A Used Fiat 500?

The older models of the Fiat 500 are beyond their prime and are in no capacity to buy for daily usage or for infrequent drives.

However, the early models of this car since its revival, can still be a great option to purchase if you are in the market for a used vehicle as these cars have few issues with their name and are fairly reliable.

While it is not the most long-lasting vehicle, the Fiat 500 provides decent value and a comfortable driving experience when bought used.

Q4. Does Fiat 500 Rust Easily?

The previous models of the Fiat 500 had a bad case of developing rust over time, and it became quite an issue.

However, since the discontinuation of this car and its revival more than three decades later, the problem has been successfully resolved, meaning that the recent models of the Fiat 500 should no longer have any sort of rusting issue at all.

While it is still possible to develop rust on your Fiat 500, keeping the care safe from the elements should make sure it does not happen.

Q5. Is Fiat 500 Expensive To Maintain?

The average cost to repair a sub-compact vehicle is around $450; however, this car does not adhere to this trend and instead is much more expensive to repair, costing upwards of $500, which is a lot when considering the standards of compact cars and seeing the competitors as I compared above.

Overall, you should expect to drop a lot of money if you have the misfortune to need a repair on your Fiat 500 or if you simply want to just have it serviced.


Reliability and longevity are not the first things to come to mind when thinking about the Fiat 500, which is the main reason why people ask how long do Fiat 500 last.

The answer to this question lies in how well you take care of this car and how much you treat it with respect, as the Fiat 500 can easily last above 200,000 if you put in a slight effort and can go up to 250,000 miles if you take good care of the car.

Apart from that, not much else can be said for the vehicle other than that it and most of its products have a standard lifespan.