Fiat dealer gives you ‘500’ reasons to buy a car

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Italy’s flagship auto maker wants to take on the big boys — with the smallest car possible.

The first Fiat dealership in Brooklyn opened on July 3 on 94th Street and Fourth Avenue, bringing European charm and fuel-efficiency to the Ridge in the form of the 500, a hatchback that rivals the Mini Cooper in size.

Since it opened, a slew of local car enthusiasts — including plenty of excited Italians — have visited. Soon, said Giuseppe Cirnigliaro, a native of Italy and studio director of Giuffre Fiat, the tiny two-door smart cars will become as popular here as they are in Europe and Brazil.

“Americans are getting to know the car,” said Cirnigliaro. “And they’re buying it, too.”

The Bay Ridge move is all part of Fiat’s plan to bring its European flavor to the American market, which has begun to shun big gas-guzzling SUVs for more practical sedans and hybrid models.

The 100-year-old car company, which helped save Chrysler when it bought into the beleagured American auto maker two years ago, is known for its tiny, gas sippers that are popular in other parts of the globe where gas prices have long been higher than they are here. Indeed, for many Brooklynites, the appeal of Fiat is its favorable gas mileage. The 500 gets up to 45 miles-per-gallon, rivaling American gas-guzzlers.

The new dealership fits perfectly in Bay Ridge, home to more than half a dozen car dealerships. It brings with it at least 10 new jobs to the neighborhood, and is Giuffre’s fourth in the area; a fifth, Giuffre Chrysler Dodge Jeep, opened on Aug. 1.

“People come in all the time to take a test drive, and they bring their wives and kids,” said Cirnigliaro. “Everyone is very excited about this. It’s an icon.”

Giuffre Fiat [9265 Fourth Ave. at 94th Street in Bay Ridge, (888) 420-9931]. For information, visit

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Reader Feedback

Jaded from BR says:
"The Bay Ridge move is all part of Fiat’s plan to bring its European flavor to the American market, which has begun to shun big gas-guzzling SUVs for more practical sedans and hybrid models."

BR is not giving up their SUV's as evidenced by the sad state of my bumpers. Jerks.
Aug. 3, 2011, 11:55 am
Mike from Bay Ridge says:
Imagine driving one on a windy day over the Verrazano. How long before you end up in the river? It makes the Mini Cooper look like a Hummer.
Aug. 3, 2011, 2:08 pm
Lorenzo from Bensonhurst says:
No one has said to give up your "big gas guzzlers"- if you have the means and funds; by all means watch your money burn pretty quick. When you are in deep debit - you will then swallow your comment as stated above- is it a sin a to save money?

As for the mini- its way overpriced...this is a practical car for commuters looking to save money on gas, parking and being able to use the funds for better things ie: vacations,investing in your home....
Aug. 3, 2011, 3:55 pm
Lorenzo from Park Slope says:

The FIAT 500 is 7.0 inches shorter and 2.2 inches narrower than the Mini. Therefore, it is easier to find street parking for the 500 than the Mini, and it offers greater protection from being sideswiped by other cars, while it is parked.

A Mini is nothing like a Hummer by any streatch of the imagination.
Aug. 3, 2011, 4:21 pm
Not Goish from Prospect Heights says:
"Fix It Again Tony"!!!!!
Aug. 3, 2011, 8:31 pm
Picnic Organizer says:
Frankie Marra hates these cars because they are too "ethnic".
Aug. 3, 2011, 11:01 pm
Lorenzo from Parkslope says:

What's "ethnic" in a era of Globalization, Gentrification and a 52% share of Chrysler ?

Repeat after me: FIAT "Fabbrica Italiana Automobili Torino (Italian automobile manufacturer)

On June 10, 2009, Chrysler Group LLC emerged from a Chapter 11 reorganization bankruptcy and was sold to the Italian automaker Fiat.On June 3, 2011, Fiat Bought out the remaining U.S. Treasury’s stake in Chrysler for $500 million increasing its ownership of the automaker to 52%.
Aug. 4, 2011, 9:49 am
Lorenzo from Bensonhurst says:
I love how everyone seems to say "fix it again Tony" lol but yet we never say KIA -killing innocent americans and or FORD- found on the road dead, or fix or repair daily- well what can I state - as years pass on car companies have improved with many issues bottom point is that "gone are the years of 10-20 of having a car" nowadays its lease, build, lease so everyone can eat... as for myself Ive owned so far 7 brand new cars my latest one is a subaru forester xt turbo 2009 love it no issues but the only main complaint is premuim fuel 91 or 93 octane which does cost a bit - yes it has 274hp which is good and if I downsize I am sure ill feel the difference but whats better money in my pocket or their pocket- it a fuel company bandwagon scheme-everyone jumps on profit...
Aug. 4, 2011, 5:16 pm

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