Fiat, the 122-year-old Italian automaker, is an industrial behemoth in Europe.
Now part of the Stellantis conglomerate, the maker of compact cars continues to innovate and provide affordable and fun-to-drive vehicles to its customer base.
If you’re looking to learn about Fiat vehicles with the most recalls, this is the place to be!
This article will explore the Fiat models with the highest number of recalls so that you can avoid them.
Table of Contents
1. Fiat 500
The Fiat 500 has 12 recalls, making it the most recalled Fiat model to date.
Here’s a list of the most common problems with Fiat 500.
Amongst all Fiat 500 model years, the 2012 and 2013 models are the least desirable. These model years have the highest number of recalls across all Fiat 500 cars. With 3 recalls, the 2016 Fiat 500 has the second highest recalls.
If you must get a Fiat 500 car, choose a 2014 or 2015 model. The 2014 and 2015 Fiat 500 have the lowest number of recalls.
Here are some of the common reasons for the recalls:
- Manual Transmission: The clutch diaphragm in the manual transmissions of some Fiat 500 cars may break, thus making it difficult to switch gears.
- Automatic Transmission: A fault in the EVCU (Electric Vehicle Control Unit) may cause the system to display a Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC). As a result, the automatic transmission may suddenly shift to neutral.
- Power Train: In some Fiat 500 cars with automatic transmissions, the shifter cable may stop working. This may make the cable separate from the transmission.
- Tire Replacement: Fiat may have displayed the wrong pressure information for spare tires on its tire placard. The tire inflation pressure stated on such placards is higher than the maximum pressure indicated on the sidewall of the actual spare tires.
- Brake Fluid: The automaker may have assembled certain Fiat 500 cars with contaminated brake fluid. Due to this problem, the sealing components in the brake system may deteriorate quickly.
2. Fiat 500E
10 recalls make the Fiat 500E the second most recalled Fiat vehicle. With about 4 recalls, the 2013 Fiat 500E is at the top of the list of recalled Fiat 500E.
The 2014 Fiat 500E follows closely behind with 3 recalls, and the 2015 model year takes the #3 spot. All these Fiat 500E cars have serious problems you may want to avoid.
However, if you are desperate to own a Fiat 500E, you can buy the 2016 model. The 2016 Fiat 500E is the least recalled among all Fiat 500E vehicles.
Check out some recall-related components in the Fiat 500E:
- Electrical System: Voltage spikes may occur in the Power Inverter Mode (PIM). As a result, the propulsion system in affected vehicles may break down and bring the car to a halt.
- Battery: The software connecting the Battey Pack Control Module (BPCM) to the Electric Vehicle Control Unit (EVCU) may be incompatible. This may cause the vehicle’s propulsion system to shut down completely whenever the car goes into limp home mode.
- Power Train: The half-shaft joints in the engine of some Fiat 500E cars may come loose and detach from each other. When this happens, the engine may become noisy. The vehicle may also lose driving capability.
- Power Inverter Module (PIM): Coolant may leak from the PIM’s cooling plates into high voltage areas in the vehicle. As a result, the car may develop a short circuit, causing the service fuse connected to the cooling plates to blow.
3. Fiat 124
Out of Fiat’s 64 recalls, 9 belong to the Fiat 124. This earns the Fiat 124 the third spot on the list of most recalled Fiat cars. No Fiat 124 cars have above one recall.
Nevertheless, Fiat 124 model years from 1970 to 1979 may be the most problematic Fiat 124 cars, as they all had 1 recall each.
Some of the issues across Fiat 124 model years are:
- Undercarriage: Some Fiat 124 cars are likely to rust heavily around their undercarriages. This problem may affect areas like the front upper control arms, the steering box, and the idler arm mounting.
- Brake System: Water may accumulate within the plastic cover of the metal brake line in the rear brake system. Excess water may oxidize and break the brake line. As a result, the rear brake line may become less efficient. This issue may also affect the braking capacity of the car.
4. Fiat 500X
The Fiat 500X is the fourth most recalled Fiat car. The automaker has recalled the vehicle about 6 times since its release.
Do you want to add a Fiat 500X to your fleet of cars? Then, you may want to avoid buying the 2019 Fiat 500X. This model year has the highest number of recalls across all Fiat 500X cars.
Other Fiat 500X cars, apart from its 2019 model year, are safer to use, as they only have one recall each.
Some problematic components in the Fiat 500X are:
- Airbags: Fiat may have installed incorrect software in some Fiat 500X cars. As a result, the Occupant Restraint Controller (ORC) in such vehicles may deactivate passive safety features.
- Service Brakes: The right rear brake caliper may have been damaged during the casting process of some Fiat 500X cars.
- Electrical System: The automaker may have placed a faulty voltage regulator chip in the circuit board of the powertrain control module. This regulator chip may fail, thus preventing the vehicle from starting. The failure of this voltage regulator chip may also cause the car to stall while moving.
- Tire Pressure: The Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) in certain Fiat 500X cars may fail to illuminate when the tire pressure is low.
- Power Train: The crimps in the transmission sensor clusters of some Fiat 500X cars may be insufficient. This may cause the transmission to suddenly shift to neutral.
5. Fiat 500L
The Fiat 500L occupies the position of the 5th most recalled Fiat vehicle. Fiat recalled this model 5 times.
Out of all Fiat 500L model years, the 2014 Fiat 500L has the highest number of recalls. Next to the 2014 model is the 2015 Fiat 500L, which has 2 recalls. On the other hand, Fiat 500L cars produced after 2015 have no recalls to date. So, if you want to get a new Fiat 500L, consider the 2016 to 2020 model years.
Here are some of the issues that led to the recall of Fiat 500L cars:
- Airbags: While assembling some Fiat 500L cars, Fiat may have folded the knee and frontal airbags incorrectly. This may result in an improper deployment of the airbag during a crash.
- Power Train: Moving the transmission shift lever while driving may have no effect on the vehicle’s selection of a transmission gear.
- Powertrain Control Module (PCM): The software calibration in the PCM of some Fiat 500L cars may be incorrect. As a result, drivers may be unable to increase the speed of affected vehicles even when they exert higher pressure on the accelerator pedal.
6. Fiat Spider
The Fiat Spider has the 6th highest number of recalls amongst all Fiat cars. The automaker recalled this vehicle 3 times.
All Fiat Spider model years have only one recall each. So, this model might be one of Fiat’s safest cars.
The only reason Fiat has ever needed to recall its Spider model is the vehicle’s faulty Transmission Control Module (TCM). Incorrect programming of the TCM may make some Fiat Spider cars downshift and decelerate unexpectedly even without pressing the brake pedals.
7. Fiat Strada
The Fiat Strada shares the 6th spot on the list of most recalled Fiat vehicles with the Fiat Spider. This model has only 3 recalls.
Out of all Strada model years, the automaker has only ever recalled the 1979 Fiat Strada for issues relating to the suspension, fuel system, and tail lights.