FIAT 500X REVIEW: Few modern crossovers are quite as stylish and affordable as the Fiat 500X SUV. The cute compact SUV is also a lot of fun to drive and almost the true definition of a crossover.
It's a car that combines the tall seating position of an SUV with the low running costs of a family hatchback.
The Renault Captur and the Nissan Juke rank among the closest rivals to the 500X. But, it has some advantage of trading off the back of the Fiat 500 city car successes.
We doubt that any Fiat 500X SUV review would parade it as head and shoulders above its rivals in any specific area. But, it is definitely a good all-rounder in our opinion.
Fiat produce the 500X in two different versions. Choose between the City Look or the model named Off-Road Look Cross.
The 500X City Look front-wheel drive should suit motorists who focus on town driving. Whereas, the Off-Road Look Cross gets a choice of front-wheel-drive or four-wheel drive.
Fiat 500X City Look versions get a 1.6-litre petrol producing 110 bhp or a 1.4-litre turbo with 140bhp. In fact, the turbo is cheaper to run than the 1.6-litre (47 mpg up from 44mpg). You also save £15 a year on road tax with an annual bill around £130.
Our Fiat 500X review found the diesel options somewhat disappointing. Buyers must choose between a 1.3-litre with 95 bhp and the 120 bhp 1.6-litre. Both diesel versions should return well over 65 mpg fuel economy and cost a minuscule £20 a year road tax bill.
The Fiat 500X Off-Road Look Cross also offers a 1.4-litre petrol with 170 bhp. That model comes with four-wheel drive and an automatic gearbox. Note that this version is less economic at 42.2 mpg and it costs almost £200 in annual road tax.
The Off-Road Look Cross diesel has a 2.0-litre power unit managing 57.6 mpg. This 500X model comes with four-wheel drive as standard. Choosing the 1.6-litre diesel means you get front-wheel drive only.
The Fiat 500X SUV interior places an emphasis on style. The cabin boasts high-quality materials for a subcompact car. There is no shortage of attractive touches and they add to its general functionality.
Supportive seating should provide the driver and occupants with noticeable comfort. It would be wrong not to mention the roominess inside with a bright and airy cabin.
As the Fiat 500X car review moved to the rear, it's clear that boot space comes at a premium.
That said, there are 350 litres of cargo or luggage space.
But it fails to match that of conventional hatchbacks such the Vauxhall Astra.
Fiat 500X City Look has three distinct trim levels (Pop, Pop Star, and Lounge). If you have owned a Fiat 500 before you will doubtless be familiar with these identities.
Pop trim level comes with the basics of alloy wheels, electric windows and air-conditioning.
An upgrade to Pop Star trimming will set you back at least £2,000. But you get engine choices and trendy kit. This includes a five-inch touchscreen infotainment system, upgraded alloy wheels, rear parking sensors, and foglights.
The Lounge trim version has extra refinements. These include increased sound deadening and higher rated technology. You also get a 3.5-inch colour screen in the instrument cluster and bi-xenon headlights.
Conclusions: Road testing the Fiat 500X SUV was fun - much like the Fiat Panda 4x4. Normal driving produces limited body lean and impressive road grip.
The feedback from the steering mechanics was adequate and unwavering. The improved refinements were noticeable. The suspension and sound deadening kept unwanted noises away from the cabin even on the motorways.