Over the weekend, reports started filtering out that the FIAT brand would be canceling all 2020 Fiat 500 models in North America. This came to a shock to some, considering that the vehicle is the brand’s halo vehicle as well as one of the better-selling vehicles for the brand.
In an official statement to the public, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) stated the following…
“FIAT will discontinue production of the current-generation Fiat 500 and 500e in North America. [The] current inventory of the 2019 Fiat 500 and 500e will last into 2020. In North America, FIAT will continue to offer the new Italian-designed, fun-to-drive Fiat 500X all-wheel-drive compact crossover, the Fiat 124 Spider roadster, and the five-passenger Fiat 500L utility vehicle.”
This comes not too long after FIAT’s announcement it’s small city car set records in sales throughout Europe last year, as well as the brand getting ready to launch its next generation of the iconic vehicle. The Fiat 500 continues to be a huge sales success outside North America while struggling in North America since its debut in December 2010.
The city car only captured 5,730 units sold in the United States and only 269 in Canada, last year. This year’s sales figures look even worse as United States gas prices stay low, with 1,692 units sold in the country up until July. In a market full of large SUVs and crossovers, as well as a booming pickup truck market, its no surprise that the microcar is not selling well.
This will be a heartbreak to many of Fiat 500 enthusiasts out there, especially those who are fans of the performance-oriented Abarth models. With news of the cancelation of the Fiat 500, makes us shake our heads at why the brand didn’t cut out the lackluster Fiat 500L model instead. That model sold a combined total of 1,426 units in the United States and Canada last year, with only 13 of the units going to Canada. The Fiat 500 outsold the 500L by almost four times as many units. The most logical explanation probably has to do with production space.
The current North American Fiat 500 model is built at the FCA Toluca Assembly Plant in Toluca, Mexico. It is assembled on the same line as the Jeep Compass and Dodge Journey. We do know that the Dodge Journey is living on life support at the current moment and the death of the 500 in North America could mean we could be seeing FCA getting ready to move more production around for new vehicles.
What do you think of the Fiat 500 being canceled for the 2020 model year? Leave your comments below.