Fiat is slowly trickling out new details on its upcoming Topolino EV, and it turns out the teeny-tiny quadricycle will do some trickling of its own.
Designed for short trips in and around dense European cities, Fiat’s owner Stellantis said this week that the upcoming electric vehicle will start at $10,735 (€ 9,890) in Italy. The automaker also said the 8.3 foot-long quadricycle will ship with a 5.5 kWh battery that packs a 47-mile range and charges up in under four hours. At that length, this vehicle is about half a foot shorter than a 2013 Smart Fortwo. The EV is due to launch in Italy by the end of this year, and in the U.K. next year.
The Topolino will work with several appropriately unusual accessories, Stellantis said, including a “little shower” that is “designed for those days spent on the beach along the Italian coast.” Other add-ons include a USB fan, Bluetooth speaker, thermal water bottle and seat covers that double as beach towels.
Unless I’m mistaken, the following promotional photograph appears to show Fiat’s shower in action.
Computer! Zoom. Enhance.
Though the vehicle itself isn’t customizable — it’ll ship in only one hue, interior and wheel design — Stellantis added that the EV will still come in two flavors: a more conventional-looking closed version as well as an open version with ropes for doors.
With a previously-announced top speed of around 28 mph, I doubt this Citroen Ami-inspired EV will ever land stateside — at least, not in significant numbers. That is a shame, because Fiat is right to boast about the upcoming quadricycle’s “reduced carbon footprint.” Next to the typical American car, a little Topolino demands far fewer raw materials and thus is less pollutive overall. Its battery capacity, for example, is about 94.5% smaller than the battery you’ll find in an upgraded Model X. Granted, larger EVs are capable of far more, but even in the U.S., most trips by car are quite short. The U.S. Department of Transportation found in a recent study that 52% of all daily trips in 2021 were under three miles.
To an extent, less is more, yet lots of folks need more juice than a Topolino can ever deliver. Still, just imagine how breezy it’d be running some quick errands in this diminutive, seafoam ride.