It’s been only a week since our paparazzi spotted a pair of facelifted Fiat 500s resting in a garage, and we’ve just received photos of the exact same cars on the go. Unfortunately, both the hatch and the convertible are still covered in swirly wrap top to bottom. However, the good news is that our spy photographers managed to find out precious information about the updated 500. Specifically, they basically confirmed what I already suspected: the 500’s front fascia has borrowed most of its styling from the 2016 500X crossover.

Whether this is good or bad is a matter of taste really, but it also depends on the number of details the city car got from its larger sibling. If you ask me, the bigger, oval headlamps would be a dramatic improvement over the previous model, but I’d prefer that the turn signals below would be kept significantly smaller than on the crossover.

As noted in the previous spy shots article, there will be a longer grille and revised fog lamps relocated further apart. There’s no word as to what changed around back, but the photos suggest redesigned taillight clusters and a beefier, reshaped rear bumper. We should find out more about it as we move closer to the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show in September, where the face-lifted 500 is reportedly set to break cover. Stay tuned for more spy shots with less camouflage and more details to talk about.

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Why it matters

Granted, these new photos are far from revealing, but at least we know Fiat is elbows deep into getting the updated hatchback ready for production. Given the Italians have been using the same design for eight years now, I’m not expecting major changes from this facelift, but a 500X-inspired front end and a revamped interior should keep enthusiasts happy for at least half a decade. Meddling too much with an iconic car such as the Fiat 500 isn’t a good idea unless you want to get rid of all links with the original model of the 1950s. Knowing Fiat, it’s safe to assume the 500 will continue as the brand’s only neo-retro model.

I’m still wondering whether the Italians will develop a direct competitor for the Mini Cooper 4-Door, but my fingers are crossed that they don’t. The 500L fills that gap nicely.

2016 Fiat 500 - spy shots

Fiat 500 Facelift Caught Testing: Spy Shots Exterior Spyshots
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Fiat 500 Facelift Caught Testing: Spy Shots Exterior Spyshots
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Fiat 500 Facelift Caught Testing: Spy Shots Exterior Spyshots
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Read our speculative review here.

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