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Order now: Fiat's cute 500!

2008-04-11 07:51

Hailey Philander

We're a few months away from the official launch of the Fiat 500 in South Africa, and local dealer order books are open.

The 500, or Cinquecento if you need to be more specific, will be launched in South Africa on July 5 - exactly one year after its international unveiling - as part of a global picnic.

And if you have the time to play around before then, check out the 500 configurator at fiat500.co.za, which allows you to customise your 500 (and even name and view it afterwards!).

Regarded as "Euro5 ready" ahead of Europe's revised emissions legislation, 500 is offered with a 51-kW 1.2-litre engine and the potent 75-kW 1.4-litre 16-valve unit currently seen on the Panda 100 HP.

It will be offered in three specification levels and the Fiat Group's Blue & Me infotainment system will be available on high-end models.

But 500 is not just about gimmicks, although the car can, in theory, be customised in 500 000 different ways! It's also about safety. 500 can be fitted with up to seven airbags and it has already been awarded a five-star Euro NCAP rating.

So, if the retro fad is your thing (and the 500 literally oozes personality, even when it's just parked on a platform as it was at the Durban Motor Show), you'd best decide if Calypso Orange or Funk White best suits you and pop in your order. It should be fun!

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