Is there a better-looking 500L hiding beneath the camouflage?

Fiat continues to prep a refresh for the 500L, and the updated design appears to make the original rather awkward shape just a little easier to swallow. Don’t expect the five-door hatchback to transform from a frog into a prince after these upgrades, though.

Up front, the updated 500L seems to take influence from last year’s revisions for the standard 500. The tweaks may include a larger grille, revised headlights, and changes for the taillights. The new styling should keep the 500L fresh, but the adjustments aren’t extensive enough to fix the model’s gawky appearance from the three-quarters perspective. The oddly-shaped greenhouse is the model’s biggest weakness, and the unwieldy design doesn’t have any alterations here.

Fiat 500L Spy Pics
Fiat 500L Spy Pics

These photos don’t give us a look inside the updated 500L, but similar revisions as the refreshed 500 seem likely. Expect infotainment system updates and improved materials in the cabin.

Fiat probably doesn’t have any major powertrain changes for the refreshed 500L. Expect a mix of small-displacement gasoline- and diesel-fuelled motors to be available depending on the market.

The 500L sits in a difficult place in the Fiat lineup. The 500 offers buyers a tiny, retro-styled hatchback. The 500X applies the vintage style to a compact crossover.  The 500L essentially exists as a compromise in the middle, and that’s not an easy spot in today’s SUV-crazy automotive market.

Will the facelift transform its fortunes for Fiat 500 buyers looking to trade up, or will the 500X continue to take the lion's share of sales? Time will tell.

Photo Source: Automedia

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Gallery: Fiat 500L Refresh Spy Photos