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Finally getting second EV - any hints?

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Avendit

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Apr 18, 2019
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Fiat seem to be doing silly offers on pre-reg e500's, so given we had agreed it was time to replace the 10 y/o swift we decided to go and try one.

Honestly didn't expect it to meet the practicality requirements, but impressively it absorbed 4 of us well. I could easily sit behind my wife (if needed and to give a future indication of the soon to be teens in the family) and could manage behind myself for city driving. The boot is triangular but reasonable.

Anyway, pickup is on Wed. Any hints we should know beforehand? I was going to use the model 3 pickup checklist again, but is there anything fiat specific I should be looking out for? Which apps are worth having installed up front? Is it worth paying for tronity to connect into abrp with?

It's a 42kw RED spec, in metallic grey. Looks stunning tbh with all the RED trim. 42 KW should be good for ~120 miles+ I believe? Any owners out there with any experience? What is day to day living with them like?
 
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Well I have this...

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And of course, ABRP, Tesla App and Google maps ;)
 
As it’s your second EV are you ever likely to drive far from home? I’ve my fair share of apps collected over the last 8 years and to be honest, I use none of them other than Tesla. I might very occasionally use google maps to search for public chargers, but that’s maybe once a year.

As for pick up, no idea about Fiat specifics but the check list covers the basics, for me the most important thing is checking for damage before you leave that could easily be done by yourself, eg curbed wheels, stone chips, marked seats, as trying to prove they were there at pickup after you’ve had the car a few days is a much bigger challenge
 
As it’s your second EV are you ever likely to drive far from home? I’ve my fair share of apps collected over the last 8 years and to be honest, I use none of them other than Tesla. I might very occasionally use google maps to search for public chargers, but that’s maybe once a year.

As for pick up, no idea about Fiat specifics but the check list covers the basics, for me the most important thing is checking for damage before you leave that could easily be done by yourself, eg curbed wheels, stone chips, marked seats, as trying to prove they were there at pickup after you’ve had the car a few days is a much bigger challenge
Not expected to wander far from home often, and when it does it will likely be to very predictable locations, so choosing charging apps shouldn't be a problem. It was more how the fiat app compares and if any other support apps (outside of charging) are worth having, and any other things that owners might know that doesn't come out in reviews.

Second CPS card ordered and other than that, I think just whatever the new chargers at gretna are is all we need really.
 
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We've had a 500e since January 2022 and it is a fabulous little car. It's only used for local journeys and beats the Tesla hands down for the shortest trips. I set the binnacle display to the option which displays real-time usage and it's remarkable how close it always is to 4miles per kW, rarely lower than 3.4 and sometimes as high as 4.5 miles/kW (so a short trip that would use 2-3% of the Teslas' 82kW battery often shows 0 or 1% against the Fiats' 37kW).

  • My first tips will be "get used to forgetting to press the turn off button on the dash when you are leaving the car" and "get used to flicking the wiper stalk at first when wanting to engage drive". It's nicer than a Tesla in so many ways but these two aspects remain as two of the only minor negatives.

  • Our car still has 10 months of the free connect App remaining but I doubt we will bother paying the subscription after it expires. Probably the only thing of any real use is for my wife to pre-warm the climate on cold mornings but as I'm always up before her I can do that in the car if necessary.
  • I have read of others taking the car into the dealership for a software update but we prefer to leave well alone. Everything has worked perfectly since new so why bother?
  • Like all legacy manufacturers they ask for an (unnecessary?) annual service and to be on the safe side when eventually selling we signed up to their multi year plan which is lower cost than paying individually each year.
  • Don't worry about charging to 100% as the 42kW battery is restricted to 37kW usable.
  • Range at 100% displays as 161 miles and in summer we have achieved slightly more than that. As most of the time we only do about 80 miles between charges range is of no consequence. We have never used a public charger and probably never will.
  • Go into the charging settings and check charge speed is set to Level 5 which will give the full 7kWh on a home EVSE (ours was set to default Level 2 at collection).
  • We both use Apple CarPlay in preference to the onboard navigation.
  • Ours does suffer from condensation on the windscreen interior during very cold spells and the dealer swapped the air filter at its most recent service as my wife had driven through a flooded road and the intake for the filter is very low down (beware of that).
  • You will no doubt see a key-fob battery low warning on the binnacle from time to time, this seems quite common with 500e's. It's easy to replace the battery yourself rather than pay ~£30 at the dealership even though the day after I did this the warning came up again! We tend to keep the key fob either in a pocket or the little slot on the dash but I believe there is a place at the bottom of the deep bin between the seats which is supposed to detect the key fob & if that's so then its just plain silly!
  • If you ever need to fit a child seat make sure you try it out at somewhere like Halfords, reaching the isofix bars is quite a struggle and some won't manage it.
  • Keep the windscreen water reservoir topped up, it doesn't hold much.

Afer all that, basically there aren't really any serious issues with this car, it's great to drive, comfortable, well built, has an amazing turning circle and brings a smile, either looking at it or driving it.

It's often hard to like a Tesla but very easy to love a 500e 💘
 
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We've had a 500e since January 2022 and it is a fabulous little car. It's only used for local journeys and beats the Tesla hands down for the shortest trips. I set the binnacle display to the option which displays real-time usage and it's remarkable how close it always is to 4miles per kW, rarely lower than 3.4 and sometimes as high as 4.5 miles/kW (so a short trip that would use 2-3% of the Teslas' 82kW battery often shows 0 or 1% against the Fiats' 37kW).

  • My first tips will be "get used to forgetting to press the turn off button on the dash when you are leaving the car" and "get used to flicking the wiper stalk at first when wanting to engage drive". It's nicer than a Tesla in so many ways but these two aspects remain as two of the only minor negatives.

  • Our car still has 10 months of the free connect App remaining but I doubt we will bother paying the subscription after it expires. Probably the only thing of any real use is for my wife to pre-warm the climate on cold mornings but as I'm always up before her I can do that in the car if necessary.
  • I have read of others taking the car into the dealership for a software update but we prefer to leave well alone. Everything has worked perfectly since new so why bother?
  • Like all legacy manufacturers they ask for an (unnecessary?) annual service and to be on the safe side when eventually selling we signed up to their multi year plan which is lower cost than paying individually each year.
  • Don't worry about charging to 100% as the 42kW battery is restricted to 37kW usable.
  • Range at 100% displays as 161 miles and in summer we have achieved slightly more than that. As most of the time we only do about 80 miles between charges range is of no consequence. We have never used a public charger and probably never will.
  • Go into the charging settings and check charge speed is set to Level 5 which will give the full 7kWh on a home EVSE (ours was set to default Level 2 at collection).
  • We both use Apple CarPlay in preference to the onboard navigation.
  • Ours does suffer from condensation on the windscreen interior during very cold spells and the dealer swapped the air filter at its most recent service as my wife had driven through a flooded road and the intake for the filter is very low down (beware of that).
  • You will no doubt see a key-fob battery low warning on the binnacle from time to time, this seems quite common with 500e's. It's easy to replace the battery yourself rather than pay ~£30 at the dealership even though the day after I did this the warning came up again! We tend to keep the key fob either in a pocket or the little slot on the dash but I believe there is a place at the bottom of the deep bin between the seats which is supposed to detect the key fob & if that's so then its just plain silly!
  • If you ever need to fit a child seat make sure you try it out at somewhere like Halfords, reaching the isofix bars is quite a struggle and some won't manage it.
  • Keep the windscreen water reservoir topped up, it doesn't hold much.

Afer all that, basically there aren't really any serious issues with this car, it's great to drive, comfortable, well built, has an amazing turning circle and brings a smile, either looking at it or driving it.

It's often hard to like a Tesla but very easy to love a 500e 💘
Brilliant advice, thanks for taking the time.

There seemed to be some hints that pre heating is a la Prema feature only now, which would be insane. If true it will be added to the list next to forgetting the off button. Like you say, not a deal breaker.

We also got sucked into the yearly service plan that also covers the first MOT. Guy couldn't really explain -why- there was a yearly service, but I'll stick to challenging them after the warranty has run out rather than before.
 
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Brilliant advice, thanks for taking the time.

There seemed to be some hints that pre heating is a la Prema feature only now, which would be insane. If true it will be added to the list next to forgetting the off button. Like you say, not a deal breaker.

We also got sucked into the yearly service plan that also covers the first MOT. Guy couldn't really explain -why- there was a yearly service, but I'll stick to challenging them after the warranty has run out rather than before.
Ours is a La Prima but I've never noticed or checked about pre-heating. I didn't mention the Fiat 'autopilot' but I'm not sure if the Red edition has that? However it is much more usable & user friendly than Tesla Autopilot on the extremely rare occasions I'm driving and & on a dual carriageway long enough to bother. Unless you plan on motorway driving it's not a necessary option.
 
Ours is a La Prima but I've never noticed or checked about pre-heating. I didn't mention the Fiat 'autopilot' but I'm not sure if the Red edition has that? However it is much more usable & user friendly than Tesla Autopilot on the extremely rare occasions I'm driving and & on a dual carriageway long enough to bother. Unless you plan on motorway driving it's not a necessary option.
at this point, more or less any other implementation of Autopilot-like system is better than Teslas's...
 
Drew57 (post #5) could have written my response as he has said what I would say! We picked up our LaPrima 500e in Ocean Green (what a fantastic colour, is it blue or is it green?) almost exactly a year ago. We love it and it also shows 161miles at 100%. We purchased it from the Inverness dealer, some 120 miles from home, as I will not touch Aberdeen Fiat dealer with a barge pole. When we went to collect the car it was a real winter day with snow on the ground so I was slightly worried about range. However we left Inverness with 100% battery and drove home over the Tomintoul, Lecht, Ballater route which has a fair few high passes. Heating, wipers, lights all on most of the way and we still arrived home with over 20% battery.
I did not take out the service plan, as I refuse to go to the Aberdeen guy and didn’t fancy a 240 mile round trip for each service. However Fiat confirm that provided the service schedule is met and only Fiat OEM parts are used the car can be serviced by any garage and the warranty is not affected. It goes in next week to our local guy, who is EV trained, for its first service.
I’ve not had any condensation issues and only rarely preheat the car, posssibly because the car is kept in a garage.
Like Drew57 I have had no issues so see no reason to get any software update done. It’s a fantastic little car and great fun to drive but even after a year I still frequently forget to press the off button when leaving the car. Then I wonder why the car refuses to lock!
 
Fiat seem to be doing silly offers on pre-reg e500's, so given we had agreed it was time to replace the 10 y/o swift we decided to go and try one.

Honestly didn't expect it to meet the practicality requirements, but impressively it absorbed 4 of us well. I could easily sit behind my wife (if needed and to give a future indication of the soon to be teens in the family) and could manage behind myself for city driving. The boot is triangular but reasonable.

Anyway, pickup is on Wed. Any hints we should know beforehand? I was going to use the model 3 pickup checklist again, but is there anything fiat specific I should be looking out for? Which apps are worth having installed up front? Is it worth paying for tronity to connect into abrp with?

It's a 42kw RED spec, in metallic grey. Looks stunning tbh with all the RED trim. 42 KW should be good for ~120 miles+ I believe? Any owners out there with any experience? What is day to day living with them like?
Arnold Clark had a whole load of them and pre-registered them in September last year. I bought a La prima in October for about £9K under list. They still have most of that batch of cars now and have recently lopped another £4K off them so they are now £21K for a car with a 34K list. Of course they are now 6 months old and not on the newest plate anymore but good value I think.

Yes 120 miles in all but subzero weather is a realistic expectation but of course if commuting short journeys ( which is what my wife does ) you don't get anything like 12*10 miles in winter especially with preheating which is fixed at 22 degrees.

A few comments from me.
1) cancel the service plan it works out more expensive than the cost of the service from what I can tell
2) the second key is a proximity key without a replaceable battery. when it runs out you have to bin it !!!
3)The connectivity is now only for 6 months from date of first reg so if yours was pre-registered you are on borrowed time. Mine runs out later this month though they have offered 3 months more if I give them card details!
4) there is no option to charge to less than 100%. its an NMC battery so even though 100% is not 100% ( when is it ever) I still only charge it to 80ish%. charging to 100 just seems wrong. It charges exactly 20% per hour so I just set it to charge for x hours
5) mine showed 190 miles of range when I picked it up but it adapts to your driving so with all the short journeys it is currently saying 56.5 at 47% i.e. 120 miles
6) the App is clunky but actually works very reliably.
7) generally does what is says on the tin. no real complaints. It is what it is. A bit disappointed by the 3 year warranty, 500e in the US get 4 years and have a two year service interval!
8) About the cheapest EV out there on Insurance. I could actually get my teenagers on it without bankrupting myself if I needed to!
 
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5) mine showed 190 miles of range when I picked it up but it adapts to your driving so with all the short journeys it is currently saying 56.5 at 47% i.e. 120 miles
? never seen any adaptation, it almost always shows 161 miles & on just one occasion 165. However we ignore that & charge up to full whenever it drops to between 20-30%. Sometimes that's several weeks apart.

My wife often visits her father which is the only long journey the car does, it is a 66 mile round trip and for most of the year she arrives home with 60% remaining. 66/40x100 = 165 so that almost correlates with what the display always shows. Much of that journey is at 55-60 mph and it usually averages out in the low 40s overall.
 
? never seen any adaptation, it almost always shows 161 miles & on just one occasion 165. However we ignore that & charge up to full whenever it drops to between 20-30%. Sometimes that's several weeks apart.

My wife often visits her father which is the only long journey the car does, it is a 66 mile round trip and for most of the year she arrives home with 60% remaining. 66/40x100 = 165 so that almost correlates with what the display always shows. Much of that journey is at 55-60 mph and it usually averages out in the low 40s overall.
what I quoted was the range showing in the app. No idea what the car says maybe its different. I remember it saying 189 when I picked it up from new. Never really looked since. I tend to charge 20-80% around twice per week.
We took ours on a road trip for the heck of it to see how it would perform. At motorway speed, and the traffic was good so it was actually 70 most of the time. In temps of around 10 degrees we were not going to get more than about 120 miles I seem to recall but stopped to charge after 100 since breakfast was calling as were the relatively cheap prices on Banbury's superchargers.
 
Aww, you didn’t get the soft-top?
Love ours (La Prima convertible in Ocean Green/Blue). Even got the roof down on Saturday when I was allowed to steal it for a run to the shops:)
Cracking little car, and my wife gets some quite sensible longer journeys out of it with a stop for a cuppa and a charge. She doesn’t use any charge apps, just tap&go typically.
Enjoy yours!

Oh, and get used to being waved at. That’s apparently a thing still in 500e’s ;)
 
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Aww, you didn’t get the soft-top?
Love ours (La Prima convertible in Ocean Green/Blue). Even got the roof down on Saturday when I was allowed to steal it for a run to the shops:)
Cracking little car, and my wife gets some quite sensible longer journeys out of it with a stop for a cuppa and a charge. She doesn’t use any charge apps, just tap&go typically.
Enjoy yours!

Oh, and get used to being waved at. That’s apparently a thing still in 500e’s ;)
The prima extras didn't appeal enough - for a second car wife decided plain n simple was the way forward. If we could have had the split rear folding seats without the leather I could have been persuaded tbh, but that's not a thing 🙄.
 
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I’ve just got an ex demo Abarth 500e. £16k off list price with less than £2k miles on and less than 6 months old. Still a couple of launch cars on autotrader at decent prices. I think you could get more off. They aren’t selling at all.

It’s been absolutely fantastic. So much fun to drive. Car seat fits in ok. Perfect for frequent short journeys, city driving and parking.

Mega impressed.
 
I think the problem Fiat have is that like everyone else they have to sell a certain proportion of EV's. Last month 65% of new cars were fleet! and I don't think fleets are buying many Fiats certainly not 500e's. Fiat don't really make many of the sort of cars that are the staple of fleets I don't think so that means they are relying on private sales and the press has put a lot of people off EV's for now. I asked my dealer how sales were and he made it clear that selling EV's was not easy right now.
Arnold Clark bought a whole batch of 500e LaPrima during the supply chain period. By the time Fiat delivered them the bottom of the market had dropped out. The dropped them from list of £34K to about £28 but still no one bought them. So they pre-registered them in September and dropped the price to £25K which is when I bought one. Now 6 months old they have dropped the price again to £21K and they still seem to have 18 of them on the books with 10 miles on the clock on a 73 plate.