Fiat 500e Named Electric Car Of The Year

Chrysler, despite showing only a limited amount of interest in alternative drivetrains, has a winner in its very small stable of greener vehicle offerings. The Fiat 500e, available only in California at this time, was picked recently as best electric car of the year by Road & Track.

The venerable auto publication, in choosing this particular electric vehicle, said “Chrysler Group must like having big fun on the clock, because this thing will chirp its tires and lay elevens all day.” This particular honor joins a strong of other accolades for the car, including having been named best electric vehicle by Spanish-language automotive radio show, Ruedas ESPN, and “top electric vehicle” in the Northwest Automotive Press Association’s “Drive Revolution” green car competition.

Fiat 500e at 2012 Los Angeles Auto Show (image copyright EarthTechling)

Fiat 500e at 2012 Los Angeles Auto Show (image copyright EarthTechling)

The Fiat 500e, under the hood, sports a

liquid-cooled/heated battery-electric powertrain [that] produces 111-horsepower (83-kW) and boasts a best-in-class range rating of 87 miles on a single charge – which takes less than four hours using a Level 2 energy source (220 volts).

It offers up a number of technologies to those driving it, including regenerative braking capability and an EV-specific “TomTom Navigation unit [that] enables the driver to view the vehicle’s charge schedule, range, and power-flow gauges, and can even locate nearby charging stations, showing real-time availability.”

“It is deeply satisfying that Road & Track editors are so taken with the 500e,” said Jason Stoicevich, Head of Fiat Brand for North America, Chrysler Group, in a statement. “The combination of modern Italian style, sporty feel and a zero-emissions powertrain makes the 500e a truly unique proposition in the marketplace.”

I am the editor-in-chief and founder for EarthTechling. This site is my desire to bring the world of green technology to consumers in a timely and informative matter. Prior to this my previous ventures have included a strong freelance writing career and time spent at Silicon Valley start ups.