Fiat 500L Tuning

"Thanks for reading my 500L tuning guide."

A mini MPV that sold really well across Europe, came with a wide choice of engines. The 1.4 Turbojet Multiair Turbo and diesels are lively and respond very well to mods.

We review and look at 500L tuning and show the best mods that work. Fiat 500Ls offer good returns when tuned and with a few sensible tuning upgrades you can enhance your driving fun.

The 500L is a good car tuning project to carry out. We see people often wasting money on their 500L doing the wrong mods and then having to start over. Follow our hints to avoid wasting your money

Tuning tips and articles

Engine tuning Transmission tuning Care care Intake & exhaust mods Improve handling Forums

 

Handling/Suspension upgrades

Improving the handling for many tuners first priority in your 500L tuning project.

Fully adjustable suspension allows you to fine tune the handling of you 500L substantially improving your drive.

We would go to a maximum drop of 26mm - 45 mm on most models. You risk compromising your handling if you go lower than this.

Top end power should be your overall aim on the 500L with a nice fat peak torque band.

Following our tips for tuning your 500L you will end up with a practical but sporty car that will out perform bigger cars.

To be completely frank and honest, on the more modest engine sizes you are wasting your time spending money on modifications, so if this applies to you get yourself an engine swap then apply the following mods.

Engine tuning mods.

Engines offered on the 500L chassis

  • 0.9 L TwinAir Turbo I2 80 PS (59 kW; 79 hp) at 5,500 rpm
  • 0.9 L TwinAir Turbo I2 105 PS (77 kW; 104 hp) at 5,500 rpm
  • 1.4 L Fire i4 95 PS (70 kW; 94 hp) at 6,000 rpm
  • 1.4 L Fire Turbojet i4 120 PS (88 kW; 120 hp) at 5,000 rpm
  • 1.4 L Multiair Turbo i4 162 PS (119 kW; 160 hp) at 5,500 rpm

Diesels

  • 1.3 L MultiJet II i4 85 PS (63 kW; 84 hp) at 3,500 rpm
  • 1.6 L Multijet i4 (105-120ps; 104 to 120 hp) at 3,750 rpm

Transmission

  • 5-speed FPT C510 manual
  • 6-speed FPT C635 manual
  • 6-speed FPT C635 dual-clutch automatic
  • 5-speed FPT C510 Dualogic semi-auto
  • 6-speed Aisin AW60T-6F25 automatic

Typically these uprated modifications are usually carried out by our members, decide how far you want to go before you start.

Getting the best performance parts for your planned usage of the car is essential. Stage 3 motor sport mods just don't work well on the road difficult in stop start traffic.

Please watch our video which covers the 5 principles of tuning your car. Be sure to keep up with our latest YouTube content and subscribe.

Best Engine Mods for your car

  1. Mapping - remapping provides the most advantage in terms of cost savings,  aftermarket ECUs, and piggyback ECUs are all alternatives.
  2. Fast road cams are one of the most significant mechanical changes, but they must be installed by someone who knows what they're doing and they are not always easy to source but you might find a local firm to regrind a stock camshaft.
  3. Intake and Exhaust - Note that on their own these mods will NOT ADD POWER in most cases, but they can help enhance power after other mods by removing the restriction.
  4. Upgrades to turbochargers and superchargers - forced induction is the most efficient approach to increase air supply, allowing you to burn more fuel and make more power. It is one of the most costly upgrades but provides the best gains.
  5. Head work - The goals of porting and flowing the head are to get air flowing into the engine while removing flow restrictions and turbulence.

Typical stage 1 mods often include: Alloy wheels, Suspension upgrade (drop 30-40mm), Lighter flywheel, Sports exhaust, Panel air filter, Remap.

Typical stage 2 mods often include: high flow fuel injector, Power/Sport clutch, Ported and polished head, Fast road cam, fuel pump upgrades.

Typical stage 3 mods often include: Engine balancing, Sports gearbox, Competition cam, Internal engine upgrades (pistons/head/valves), Adding or upgrading forced induction (turbo/supercharger).

Peak power is nice in motorsport but for a drivable and fun car you need a long power band and perhaps extending the rev range.

In this article we shall give your a good starting base to the best upgrades for your car, but we'd encourage you to spend some time on the site looking into the details of each type of performance part.Fast road cams offer one of the biggest bhp gains for your money as far as a stand alone uprated parts goes on a NA (naturally aspirated) engine.

The exhaust and intake flow play a large part in your cars power band, but be careful here, getting this wrong can upset the idle and make the car impossible to drive in traffic. You'd need to follow a camshaft upgrade with other mods and finish with a performance chip for the best performance gains.

When pushing up the power you will need to uprate to the fuelling. More power needs more fuel.

If you find you get flat spots and surges after your sports modifications you should check the fuelling and try a higher octane fuel as well. Larger injectors will enable you to supply sufficient fuel to the engine.

A fuel pump will only deliver a finite amount of fuel, so you may need to uprate this if your injectors are demanding more fuel.

Intake and Exhaust Tuning.

The next area for modification is the intake and exhaust. Air induction kits are only beneficial to add power if the cars air intake is restricted! Adding an induction kit to most standard engines will see NO POWER GAIN AT ALL. If you have heavily modified your engine and it's need for air INCREASES DRAMATICALLY then an induction kit is the answer and will help remove this restriction.

Derestricting the flow of air into the engine is the primary part of car tuners so get a better flowing air filter if you find that the car is running lean only if you find the car is running lean. Induction kits can sound great but due to the warm air in the engine bay they will not really increase power and usually rob you of power on most cars.

Sports exhausts can help equal out the flow of air through the engine. But if your exhaust is too large, ie: over 2.5 inches bore, you will lose a lot of the exhaust flow rate and end up lacking power and torque.

Head work including a gas flow (ported and polished) and 3 or 5 angle valve job will really help to release the potential of the engine. Your clutch can fail if it starts to fail and the standard clutches are only ever good for power gains of up to 45%. Fit a competition clutch to avoid power loss through the transmission. The best mods we would do for your 500L are a remap especially on a turbo, a fast road camshaft and sports exhaust, with a good air intakeNA (naturally aspirated) engines do not achieve big power gains if you remap them, unless you have done extensive modifications. With turbocharged engines this is another story. A remapped turbo will give phenomenal power gains and take full advantage of the strength of the block.

We've also seen some tuners toying with twin charging conversions and making some very high power hikes.

Despite the large cost involved adding forced induction to a NA (naturally aspirated) engine will give large power gains. Superchargers are generally easier to add than a turbo. Turbos provide boost in exponential proportion to rising engine speed and this can make mapping difficult.

It is more straightforward to map a supercharger because the boost is directly proportional to engine speed on a linear curve. Alternatively you could perhaps install water injection to minimise knock.

Alloy wheel upgrades.

Because alloy wheels are less heavy they improve performance and they will help to cool the brake disks. Get a good directional tread pattern tire to improve your handling and help improve traction on your 500L. It is worth noting that although they can look cool on the 500L big alloy wheels will actually decrease your performance. The larger you go the lower your acceleration will be - this to the change in your effective final drive ratio.

With this in mind aim to keep the overall rolling diameter of the wheel the OEM setup. In all cases without going over 16 inches.

If you would like to know more, or just get some friendly advice on Tuning your car please join us in our friendly forum where you can discuss 500L options in more detail with our 500L owners. It would also be worth reading our unbiased Fiat tuning articles to get a full grasp of the benefits and drawbacks of each modification.

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