The Fiat 500 is 139 inches of A-segment fury, with a heaping dose of cute and a dash of fuel efficiency. In fact, the manual transmission-equipped cinquecento averages 33 miles per gallon in mixed driving, which is better than most things on the road.

Impressed? Toyota isn't. The Detroit Free Press reports that the Japanese automaker told dealers at the National Automobile Dealers Association meeting in Las Vegas, NV recently that the next generation Avalon will get better fuel economy than the wee Fiat.

Since the current generation Avalon is five feet longer and considerably wider than the 500, that's an impressive claim. Heck, the Avalon is bigger than the Camry, and buyers currently have to step into a Camry Hybrid model to surpass the fuel economy numbers of the pint-sized Fiat.

The sky-high fuel economy of the Avalon wasn't the only good news Toyota delivered to dealers. The automaker reportedly informed the car-selling audience that 19 new models were coming in 2012.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 51 Comments
      lostjr
      • 3 Years Ago
      And the 19 new models are?
      CarCrazy24
      • 3 Years Ago
      Will it still drive like a boat?
      • 3 Years Ago
      [blocked]
        Rick C.
        • 3 Years Ago
        Oh look, it's recess time at the local kindergarten.
      KAG
      • 3 Years Ago
      The bigger problem with the Fiat 500 is it only has a 3 star crash rating.
        lasertekk
        • 3 Years Ago
        @KAG
        It carries a 'good' rating with the IIHS, which is the best you can get and a 5-star with NCAP, again, the best you can get. I don't see a problem here. I see a corresponding trend.
      Georg
      • 3 Years Ago
      crappy EPA ratings favoring japanese car producer by giving them unbelivable good ratings no real world test can backup... ask Honda about EPA rating and the true world..
        me73
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Georg
        lol ... before my 2000 honda civic got into a wreck it gave me 30 - 33 miles to a gallon. American companies just dream to beat 30 mpg. I really loved the civic and I would have driven it for another 100 years ... wish i still had it. Perfect dd.
        NightFlight
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Georg
        @ Georg Why don't you check Fuelly.com and shut your mouth.
      fat kid
      • 3 Years Ago
      Toyota Group's 2013 Avalon is gonna kill Chrysler Group's Fiat 500 in sales numbers too. Go Big Red T!
        Quen47
        • 3 Years Ago
        @fat kid
        That comment is the equivalent of a Yankees fan getting fired up because they beat a local community college team in spring training. I thought Fried Colombian Ricer was the only one dumb enough to say crap like that. Unless...
        Krishan Mistry
        • 3 Years Ago
        @fat kid
        Yes, they will beat them in sales. The Avalon is a long standing senior citizen favourite seller! At least you could drive a 500 without feeling the need to take a nap or start knitting.
      aatbloke1967
      • 3 Years Ago
      Same old adage ... a choice between European style, or a Japanese appliance.
        Govis
        • 3 Years Ago
        @aatbloke1967
        Let's all hear it for appliances! Once the Euros learn to make reliable motors, we'll talk.
      kmanning83
      • 3 Years Ago
      Is 33 MPG the best FIAT can do for the manual? My '98 Sentra got better mileage.
        aatbloke1967
        • 3 Years Ago
        @kmanning83
        No, it isn't. Bear in mind that the one single engine in the one single model available in the US isn't even the tip of the Fiat iceberg. Fiat's turbodiesels, for example, are second to none - so much so that they've been used extensively by GM Europe over the past decade or more. And their twinair technology is astonishing as to what can be achieved from a tiny engine.
      Mike Pulsifer
      • 3 Years Ago
      Basic aerodynamics, guys. With a short car like the 500 (or the iQ), it's more like moving a brick through the air rather than a knife. Why must fools think that fuel efficiency must be directly proportional to the length of a vehicle? There are many parking spaces in the city where fitting an Avalon will be a challenge at best. That's when the short nature of the 500 becomes a feature worth paying for.
        bhtooefr
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Mike Pulsifer
        In fact, highway fuel efficiency is actually directly proportional to the length of the vehicle, if the vehicle is the ideal aerodynamic shape for its length, automatically. See, weight doesn't matter much on the highway - the main things are frontal area (which is based on width and height) and drag coefficient. So, a very long car that's as wide and tall as a very short car will get better highway fuel economy, despite the much heavier weight. City, however, is highly dependent on weight.
        ChrisTT
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Mike Pulsifer
        Because length = weight with "normal" cars.
          Matt
          • 3 Years Ago
          @ChrisTT
          Aero isn't the only thing that affects fuel economy. Only a fool would think that. More mass needs more power to get it accelerated. And the Avalon has a lot more mass. This is more important on the city cycle and less important on the highway cycle, but is still a large factor. Perhaps look into the EPA testing cycles yourself. None of them are run at a single speed, even the highway cycle.
          • 3 Years Ago
          @ChrisTT
          [blocked]
        Jake
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Mike Pulsifer
        Bigger heavier cars tend to have bigger engines which does directly affect fuel economy, even if aerodynamics are similar.
      reattadudes
      • 3 Years Ago
      I've never seen anything close to 33MPG with my (manual) FIAT 500. the very first tank was 38.7MPG, and now, after 6,000 miles, my dead average (I never reset it since new) is 42.7MPG. on trips I regularly get over 49MPG if I keep the speed below 70MPH. I've talked to many owners that are getting over 52MPG on the highway.
        • 3 Years Ago
        @reattadudes
        [blocked]
          rcavaretti
          • 3 Years Ago
          His results (data) merely mimic that of existing Fiat 500 owners overseas, where they already have five years of experience with that model. Since the North American engine is mechanically identical to the world engine, there's no reason the NA Fiat 500 shouldn't match the 40+ MPG numbers those other owners have been seeing.
          aatbloke1967
          • 3 Years Ago
          DRstrangelove, isn't it time your parents sent you to bed?
      dreadcthulhu01
      • 3 Years Ago
      Given that the typical Avalon buyer is in their mid-60s (see Autoblogs review of the 2011 Avalon), and wants a big, comfy car, not a race car, giving this car a Camry hybrid drivetrain will be more than sufficient. I have driven a 2010 Buick Lacrosse (a car similar in size and weight to the Avalon) with the base 182 hp 2.4 liter motor, and while slow, it was perfectly capable of keeping up with traffic.
      Temple
      • 3 Years Ago
      So are all Avalons going to be hybrid-only? Because as it stands now, a 3,600lb car with a 268hp V6, there is no way that the Avalon will beat the 101hp Fiat 500 in mileage (30/38mpg EPA). If its a hybrid then its going to have a LOT less power. The 2013 Fusion Hybrid, which actually does best the Fiat, makes 185hp, the Camry hybrid makes 200hp. Either way we're talking about 68-83hp down from the current Avalon. One solution for the next Avalon is to go hybrid and lose a lot of weight.
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Temple
        [blocked]
          AE86
          • 3 Years Ago
          They havent... but the Avalon is far from slow.
        fat kid
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Temple
        perhaps a 220+ hp hybrid, I don't see it getting less hp than 2012 Camry hybrid
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