In the 1983 Chevy Chase film "National Lampoon's Vacation," sexiness (at least of the female variety) was personified by Christie Brinkley driving a Ferrari 308 that got about 15 miles per gallon. Nearly three decades later, Fiat brand chief Olivier Francois is pitching a kinder, greener sexy.

Speaking at the Los Angeles Auto Show Wednesday afternoon in front of a screen that read "Stop Global Warming, Start Global Hotness," Francois used every innuendo he could find to put distance between what he called the "busy, shiny, goofy, blocky" aspects of green living and the battery-electric Fiat 500e that the Italian automaker will start selling in California by mid-2013. He then showed a clip of a couple of test drivers take the 500e out on a racecourse only to get derailed mid-track by an impromptu make-out session. Another 500 ad featured a clever scorpions taking the top off a supermodel.

"Isn't ugliness the worst kind of pollution," Francois asked rhetorically in front of images that included the nearly-triangular EV the Kewet Buddy. You can watch this all unfold below.

The 500e will have a 111-horsepower motor that Fiat says will deliver at least an 80-mile single-charge range. The model will also have three color packages and an interior with electric orange accents for those that can't contain themselves. As for pricing, Francois, when asked after his presentation, maintained the company's silence on the subject.



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  • 21 Comments
      MTN RANGER
      • 2 Years Ago
      Those cheeky Europeans.
      Armchair Economist
      • 2 Years Ago
      So disingenuous. Only sold in California in limited quantities and at a loss. Why bother promoting it like this? It just annoys people outside of California who want to buy this product.
        Ford Future
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Armchair Economist
        And Orange?
          Marcopolo
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Ford Future
          @ sirvixisvexed Orange county ? Oh, all right....
          Marcopolo
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Ford Future
          @ Ford Future " And Orange?" California, oranges,....? Oh, never mind ....
          sirvixisvexed
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Ford Future
          ^ Haha. Isn't Oranges a Florida thing? Maybe they grow them in California too...
          sirvixisvexed
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Ford Future
          a quick google of "California Oranges" and the sudden thought of "Orange" county.....drrrrrrrrr :)
      RC
      • 2 Years Ago
      I'm sold on that sexy Cinquecento E
      upstategreenie
      • 2 Years Ago
      europeans are much sexier anyway riding bikes going to beach having an espresso after utilizing public transporation which is everywhere so you dont need to drive at all!! americans who hate any 'change' in deep south welfare states are usually giant porkers who weigh more than the fiat 500 who have no self except for cheap sh!t to display aka materialism. america will have regular sandies as long as we have short term me me me thinking in US...o of course in US relative morality, it is NOT socialism to subsidize big oil to tune of hundreds of billion spend 20 billion for new levees in N.O, so far it is at least costing all taxpayers 71 BILLION for sandy just for nj where right wing poster boy christie after begging for big govt billions says 'weather is weather' and then goes back to hating teachers women and it is all on youtube.... THAT is ugly being ignorant turds which hate democracy in bahrain palestinian statehood but love meaningless unfunded wars for oil decimating populations all to suck out planet's lifeblood for our cheap short lived addiction is UGLY. THe very term 'ugly americans' applies to short term me me me nobody else matters fu*(ck the planet thinking of right wing denialist americans. ANY electric car or hybrid or 'green 'anything will sell wherever educated folks live; in right wing religious fanatic/backwater welfare areas which nonetheless hate 'big govt' paying for them to stay alive, it won't sell too well, espec many rural right wing welfare areas in 2012 still only have local chevy or ford dealer b/c they hate 'foreigners' but LOVE illegals bused in daily to local meat 'processing' plant picking all crops etc.... and call it 'patriotic'... btw: whoever doesn't like green cars, why are you on this site??? is koch funded 'heartland' right wing propaganda site down due to losing half a trillion bucks on the election due to their own hate and ignorance? Shouldnt EVERY denialist be in iraq or afghanistan fighting to 'free' your precious or getting ready to go protect your 'precious' in another war Obama is starting for your 'cheap' (as in human life anywhere else on the planet is cheap if you have oil we want or even in US if you happen to live above tar sands or shale gas) 'precious' in Iran? right wing denialists favorite hobby? spit on starving mao mart workers so can you hoover up cheap commie junk a mao mart? maybe stop by mcgrossburgers and ignore protesting min wage workers to gulp down empty junk food and ignore how most are on public health care BEFORE 'obamacare' for 'low low prices' always???? every right wing denialist mouthbreaher should be FORCED to at least donate a piece of disposable junk from mao mart to those YOU displaced from carbon emissions/fossil fuel pollution aka 71 billion climate catastrophe 'liberal conspiracy' which didn't really happen anyway?????
        Aaron
        • 2 Years Ago
        @upstategreenie
        Someone forgot to take their medicine today.
      Giza Plateau
      • 2 Years Ago
      Bait and switch. On multiple levels
      SpeedyRacer
      • 2 Years Ago
      Personally I think the 500 is ugly and too small. I much prefer the looks and size of my LEAF.
        ScubaChris
        • 2 Years Ago
        @SpeedyRacer
        As has been said on this forum many times before, the uglyness or prettyness of a car are entirely subjective. I've owned a Fiat 500 for almost 3 years and I love it. What do I know though? I also love the look of the Leaf!
          Giza Plateau
          • 2 Years Ago
          @ScubaChris
          Paul, that is an admirable stance and I agree but that doesn't mean we should be appreciative when the automakers give us ugly and overpriced. Not everything should be embraced in the name of electric drive. A good looking car makes the transition infinitely easier. A car with performance makes it easier. A fair price makes it easier.
          Paul Scott
          • 2 Years Ago
          @ScubaChris
          The relative attractiveness of a car is not important in the long run. What is important is that you do no harm to others. Driving internal combustion harms millions of people, ruins economies, and we fight wars over the fuel. If you prefer to do those things, then its YOU that is ugly, not the car.
      Roy_H
      • 2 Years Ago
      I think the Fiat 500 is butt ugly. How they manage to portray it as beautiful and sexy is beyond me.
        Nick
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Roy_H
        You probably think a 98 Mustang with pep boys wheels and orange racing stripes is hot.
      Larz Larzen
      • 1 Year Ago
      GW's on hold here tonight. Brrr.
      Marcopolo
      • 2 Years Ago
      It's a fun little car with cute retro styling and a great deal of appeal. Like many designs it's far to expensive and of limited appeal to put into mass production, but it's a great publicity vehicle for the future potential of EV's. Hey, any ad featuring an arachnid with that sort of talent, captures my attention !
      Spec
      • 2 Years Ago
      Why are they advertising it at all? They are only going to sell it in California and they whine about losing money on each one.
        fourlocked
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Spec
        Nobody's whining. Just stating facts. They are advertising it and only selling it in California because the government requires them to sell a minimum number, in California, in 2013. At today's technology levels, the only way to sell the requisite number is to price it at a loss. The rest of us pay for that in higher prices on non-electric cars.
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