During a speech to the Chicago Economic Club during the Chicago Auto Show earlier this week, Dodge CEO Ralph Gilles confirmed that the Fiat 500 will be on sale in the U.S. before the end of the year. While Fiat is planning to sell many of its models rebadged as Chrysler and Dodge products, the tiny 500 model will be responsible for leading the Fiat brand’s charge back into the U.S. market.
Chrysler will produce the car in Mexico, where it expects to build from 100,000 to 130,000 units for sale in North and South America. Fiat believes that while the car’s tiny size (essentially making it only suitable for two) is diminutive, considering the success MINI has had, the 500 still has a shot in the U.S. market.
When it arrives in the U.S., the 500 will be powered by Fiat’s 1.4-liter four-cylinder engine making 100-hp and 95 ft-lbs of torque. That certainly isn’t much, but then the 500 doesn’t weigh much either. We’re just awaiting word on the 170-hp Abarth version, a model that would compete with MINI’s Cooper S.