We've already seen the fully electric version of Fiat's upcoming new 600 crossover. That EV version uses the same 54kWh battery and 156hp electric motor that you'll find in the new Peugeot e-2008 and Jeep Avenger. Now, there will be a petrol hybrid, too, for markets where Fiat reckons "the conversion to electric is still at a slower pace."
For where full electric hasn't taken off
Olivier Francois, FIAT CEO and Stellantis Global CMO commented: "Our strategic vision remains full electric and 500e being the bestselling BEV city car in Europe fuels our determination to pursue and make electric truly accessible to all. However, we also shall stay relevant in those countries such as Italy, our domestic market, where full electric hasn't yet really taken off. Therefore, for these selected countries, together with the new 600 full electric, we will offer a high-spec hybrid that will hopefully open the door to a more electrified world."
The hybrid engine is similar to that already launched in the outgoing Peugeot 3008, and which will also see service in some markets in the Jeep Avenger. The 1.2-litre three-cylinder turbo petrol powerplant develops 100hp, and Fiat claims that it will have emissions of between 100 and 114g/km of CO2, although those are not officially homologated figures as yet.
New dual-clutch gearbox
The hybrid half of the powertrain includes a compact 48-volt lithium-ion battery and a new six-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox into which a 21kW electric motor has been packaged. That can allow the hybrid 600 to run on EV-only power for short bursts, up to a maximum speed of 30km/h. It will also 'sail' in electric mode when you're coasting downhill or lifting off on major roads. There's also an electric 'creep' mode for shuffling forwards in heavy traffic and an electric parking mode.
Fiat claims that the system offers around a 15 per cent saving on CO2 compared to a conventional, non-hybrid version of the same engine. The electric motor can also add a little extra burst of power, giving the 600 hybrid a 0-100km/h time of 11 seconds. In reality, it's something of a halfway house between a mild hybrid and a full Toyota-style hybrid. According to Fiat, it offers: "lower consumption and emissions and more respect for the environment. Less noise pollution and more comfort and fun, thanks to the fluidity of the electric dual-clutch transmission and the responsiveness of the power supply."
Recycled seat materials
On the outside, there's no difference to the electric 600 bar the addition of an exhaust pipe, and it remains 4.17 metres long, with a boot capacity of 385 litres, and a claimed 15 litres of storage space in the cabin. Inside, the cabin gets exclusive recycled-fabric seats with white accents and a matte black bio-based plastic dashboard material. From launch, there will be a basic model and a high-end La Prima version, which Fiat says: "offers 100% style, tech, and comfort to ensure an immersive Italian Dolce Vita experience. Packed with state-of-the-art safety and assistance features, it brings all the associated benefits to urban and extra-urban mobility with Level 2 Assisted Driving."
Both versions get a unique digital instrument display, paddle shifters for the gearbox, and a switch on the touchscreen to disable the electric driving mode if needed. The 600 hybrid will also come with connected services, including one that constantly monitors the vehicle's health and an optional Connect PLUS pack, which includes navigation and remote vehicle monitoring. There's also a function called Trip Report - which can analyse your driving habits and give you tips and hints to reduce fuel consumption.
In the Italian market, the 600 Hybrid will be priced from €24,950, which Fiat says with 'scrappage' bonuses and special offers comes down to €19,950. The 600 hybrid has not yet been confirmed for the Irish market.