Last year, 2020, saw some record lows in car sales figures per unit. Nearly every manufacturer saw a dip in sales and this year car dealerships strive to take strides toward better numbers. However, one car brand sold fewer units in Q2 this year than in 2021.
In Q2 of 2020, Fiat sold 1,339 units according to Good Car Bad Car. This year in 2021, while other carmakers saw an uptick in sales per unit compared with last year, Fiat sold only 892 units. So what gives? Why aren’t people buying Fiat models anymore?
Why doesn’t anyone buy Fiat cars?
The Fiat brand hasn’t been as well received in the U.S. since its attempted comeback in 2010, CNBC reports. However, these last two years are a record low for the Italian car brand. Back in 2014 the brand saw a high of about 46,000 units sold. Then just four years later that figure already fell by more than half.
According to CNBC, 2018 saw only around 15,000 Fiat units sold. So why aren’t people in the U.S. buying Fiat cars like the Fiat 500? It’s highly likely that it has to do with a number of important factors.
First of all, U.S. consumers largely prefer to drive trucks, SUVs, and crossovers. Larger vehicles have come to dominate the automotive market. Plus, Fiat models fail to impress important critics like Consumer Reports and J.D. Power. Combine low reviews with poor reliability ratings and we have a growing list reasons not to buy a Fiat car.
Is the Fiat 500 a good car?
First of all, let’s remember that 2019 was the last model year for the Fiat 500. This is likely another big reason for the extremely low sales numbers we are seeing in 2020 and 2021. That said, Consumer Reports doesn’t exactly hate the Fiat 500.
“The retro-styled 500 has agile handling, a willing engine, and a crisp-shifting manual transmission, all of which combine to make the Fiat fun to drive.”
It does comment on the “willing engine” and “agile handling.” Overall the Fiat 500 was a fun little car with some personality. For those that wanted a small city car that is simple to park in urban situations, the Fiat 500 served well in a market full of larger cars, truck and SUVs.
J.D. Power actually awarded the Fiat brand with a Dependability Award in 2013. In addition, Fiat earned a J.D. Power Performance Award in both 2013 and 2015. However, the brand has failed to impress since then. The flagship Fiat 500 was discontinued for U.S. markets in 2019 to a lack of interest from consumers.
What Fiat models are still on sale?
Today, the Fiat 500X is the only Fiat on sale in the U.S. It’s one of the lowest-rated models in the subcompact crossover SUV segment. The 2021 Fiat 500X suffers from both poor reliability and low consumer satisfaction ratings of only 1/5 in each category.
“While its styling may be appealing, the more time spent with the 500X, the more its appeal wanes, thanks to its stiff ride, noisy cabin, restricted visibility, annoying vibration when idling, and unsupportive seats.”
Consumer Reports isn’t impressed with virtually anything about this Jeep Renegade sibling. In a highly competitive class of subcompact crossover SUV models, the Fiat 500X is rated just No. 12 out of 15. While some may find its style appealing, most buyers are likely to find another model from a different car brand they like that provides better quality and satisfaction.