Our Rating



  • Fun to drive by EV standards

  • Great styling

  • Interior is a big improvement over petrol Abarths


  • Not as engaging as petrol models from the firm

  • Range could be better

  • Can get expensive


Abarth has become well known for its small and fun hot hatches. With a policy of taking a Fiat 500, giving it a bigger engine, improved mechanicals and a more aggressive look, the Italian firm has developed a very loyal customer base. 

It’s now looking to do the same with Fiat’s new electric 500, which despite its look, is based on a completely different platform, and therefore brings some major advancements when it comes to technology and drivability. 

Abarth has given its first EV – the new 500e – a more powerful motor, as well as a far sportier look than its Fiat twin. Another new feature is its ‘sound generator’, which aims to add some excitement to the electric car world with its external speaker replicating the sound of an engine. But is this a true electric hot hatch?

Abarth 500e


Abarth’s car retains the electric Fiat 500’s 42kWh battery, but the main change is a more powerful motor, increasing from 118bhp in the standard city car to 153bhp here. It’s worth noting Abarth will continue to sell its petrol models alongside this EV.

Unlike the normal EV policy of giving a car as much power as possible, the 153bhp output is less than that of some of the petrol Abarths, though this 500e can still accelerate from 0-60mph in 6.8 seconds before topping out at 96mph. 

In terms of range, Abarth claims up to 157 miles, which is down on the 199 miles that Fiat gives for its 500. But with 85kW DC rapid charging capability, it means it’s able to charge to 80 per cent in just 35 minutes.

Abarth 500e

Ride and handling

Abarths are renowned for their fun driving experience, and though we reckon this 500e isn’t quite so engaging, it’s undoubtedly a better package to live with than Abarth’s ICE models.. The ride isn’t as harsh as the petrol models, while refinement has improved as a result of it being an EV. The dreadful driving position of the petrol car has also been improved.

The sound generator adds an interesting touch and does bring greater excitement. We feel it could be developed further, as you can’t change the volume of it, and to turn it on or off, the car has to be turned off completely. 

But it certainly feels more engaging than the Fiat, with engaging handling and well-weighted steering in its sportiest setting. We feel it likely be more suitable to use around town than a track, however.

Abarth 500e


Fiat’s electric 500 has a great interior, and the Abarth builds on that. The large 10.25-inch touchscreen is significantly better than the old systems used in the petrol cars, while there’s a clear digital instrument cluster too. 

On higher-spec Turismo models, Alcantara is used across the cabin, such as for the sports seats, steering wheel and dashboard. The quality is generally very good, though the door cards do feel quite cheap.

Like the standard Fiat, though, the 500e is limited by its small size. The back seats offer limited room for adults, while the boot is tight at 185 litres. It’s worth noting the 500e can be had as the standard hatchback and also as a convertible.

Abarth 500e


The 500e is offered in two trim levels, the standard car or a top-spec 500e. 

Standard equipment is generous from the start, though, with all models coming with a 10.25-inch touchscreen, digital dials, automatic climate control and JBL sound system. 

We reckon it’s worth the extra money to upgrade to the Turismo, however, with this bringing a fixed glass roof, a host of Alcantara elements, keyless entry and wireless smartphone charging to name just a few features.

Abarth 500e


It’s not uncommon to spend more than £30,000 on a petrol Abarth, so the 500e’s starting price of £34,195 won’t seem as hard to stomach as it might seem at first. You get a lot of equipment for that too. 

The Turismo does command a steep £4,000 on top of that starting price, while the convertible is a further £3,000 as well. At more than £40,000, that’s when the Abarth starts to look a bit overpriced. 

Abarth 500e


Abarth has managed to carry over its recipe successfully into an electric age. Starting with the well-rounded Fiat model, it gives it more power, livens up the experience and makes it look suitably menacing as well. 

While the 500e might lack some of the fun of the petrol models, it’s one of the best efforts yet at creating an electric hot hatch, and is, without doubt, a great all-rounder for those primarily doing shorter trips.