Excited about Fiat’s return to the United States market with the compact 500 hatchback? It seems the tiny Italian hatchback could soon be joined by an all-wheel-drive variant according to some recent spy photos snapped by the folks at Motor Trend.
Sure the 500 is just starting to make its first appearances on American roads now, but the car has been available in Italy since 2007. That being the case, Fiat is preparing revisions for the car that will likely appear on 2012 model year vehicles. A recent spy picture leads us to believe Fiat has more than just cosmetic updates in the works.
It’s easy to tell the car caught in cold-weather testing sits higher than a standard 500, but that doesn’t necessarily make it an AWD. Another clue, however, are rearranged exhaust outlets that make us certain this 500 is sporting an AWD drivetrain. If true, the more-capable 500 would likely share its mechanical bits with the slightly larger Fiat Panda.
Rumors have been abundant for years of an expanded 500 lineup, but reports suggest a larger wagon variant may also be in the pipeline. If the rumors are true, and Fiat is moving forward with the two additional models, Mini has more to be worried about than we previously thought. There’s no word whether the expanded lineup would make its way this side of the Atlantic, but rest assured if the standard 500 is as popular on our shores as Fiat hopes it’s going to be, they’ll almost certainly send them over.
Source: Motor Trend