2021 Chevrolet Trailblazer vs. 2020 Fiat 500L

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/08/08

For enhanced safety, the front seat shoulder belts of the Chevrolet Trailblazer are height-adjustable to accommodate a wide variety of driver and passenger heights. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages passengers to buckle up. The Fiat 500L doesn’t offer height-adjustable seat belts.

In the past twenty years hundreds of infants and young children have died after being left in vehicles, usually by accident. When turning the vehicle off, drivers of the Trailblazer are reminded to check the back seat if they opened the rear door before starting out. The 500L doesn’t offer a back seat reminder.

The Trailblazer has standard Automatic Emergency Braking, which use forward mounted sensors to warn the driver of a possible collision ahead. If the driver doesn’t react and the system determines a collision is imminent, it automatically applies the brakes at full-force in order to reduce the force of the crash or avoid it altogether. The 500L doesn't offer collision warning or crash mitigation brakes.

The Trailblazer’s lane departure warning system alerts a temporarily inattentive driver when the vehicle begins to leave its lane and gently nudges the vehicle back towards its lane. The 500L doesn’t offer a lane departure warning system.

To help make backing safer, the Trailblazer (except L)’s optional cross-path warning system uses wide-angle radar in the rear bumper to alert the driver to vehicles approaching from the side, helping the driver avoid collisions. The 500L doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.

The Trailblazer has standard OnStar®, which uses a global positioning satellite (GPS) receiver and a cellular system to get turn-by-turn driving directions, remotely unlock your doors if you lock your keys in, help track down your vehicle if it’s stolen or send emergency personnel to the scene if any airbags deploy. The 500L doesn’t offer a GPS response system, only a navigation computer with no live response for emergencies, so if you’re involved in an accident and you’re incapacitated help may not come as quickly.

Both the Trailblazer and the 500L have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available blind spot warning systems and rear parking sensors.

Warranty

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Chevrolet’s powertrain warranty covers the Trailblazer 1 year and 10,000 miles longer than Fiat covers the 500L. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 5 years or 60,000 miles. Coverage on the 500L ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

The Trailblazer’s corrosion warranty is 1 year longer than the 500L’s (6 vs. 5 years).

There are over 8 times as many Chevrolet dealers as there are Fiat dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Trailblazer’s warranty.

Reliability

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J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Chevrolet vehicles are more reliable than Fiat vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Chevrolet fourth in reliability, above the industry average. With 134 more problems per 100 vehicles, Fiat is ranked 31st.

Fuel Economy and Range

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On the EPA test cycle the Trailblazer FWD CVT 1.3 turbo 3 cyl. gets better fuel mileage than the 500L (29 city/33 hwy vs. 22 city/30 hwy).

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Trailblazer’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The 500L doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Chevrolet Trailblazer uses regular unleaded gasoline. The 500L requires premium for maximum efficiency, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.

Environmental Friendliness

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In its Green Vehicle Guide, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rates the Chevrolet Trailblazer higher (7 out of 10) than the Fiat 500L (3). This means the Trailblazer produces up to 24.5 pounds less smog-producing pollutants than the 500L every 15,000 miles.

Transmission

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A nine-speed automatic is on the Chevrolet Trailblazer 1.3 turbo 3-cylinder, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only a six-speed automatic is available for the 500L.

The Trailblazer has a standard continuously variable transmission (CVT). With no “steps” between gears, it can keep the engine at the most efficient speed for fuel economy, or keep it at its peak horsepower indefinitely for maximum acceleration. The 500L doesn’t offer a CVT.

Tires and Wheels

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For better traction, the Trailblazer has larger standard tires than the 500L (215/65R16 vs. 205/55R16).

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Trailblazer RS has standard 18-inch wheels. The 500L’s largest wheels are only 17-inches.

The Chevrolet Trailblazer’s wheels have 5 lugs for longer wheel bearing life, less chance of rotor warping and greater strength. The Fiat 500L only has 4 wheel lugs per wheel.

The Trailblazer has a standard easy tire fill system. When inflating the tires, the vehicle’s integrated tire pressure sensors keep track of the pressure as the tires fill and tell the driver when the tires are inflated to the proper pressure. The 500L doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.

Suspension and Handling

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For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Trailblazer’s wheelbase is 1.1 inches longer than on the 500L (103.9 inches vs. 102.8 inches).

For better handling and stability, the average track (width between the wheels) on the Trailblazer is 1.1 inches wider in the front and 1.5 inches wider in the rear than the track on the 500L.

Chassis

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The front grille of the Trailblazer uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The 500L doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

Passenger Space

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The Trailblazer has .9 inches more front legroom and 2.7 inches more rear legroom than the 500L.

Cargo Capacity

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/08/08

The Trailblazer has a much larger cargo volume than the 500L with its rear seat up (25.3 vs. 22.4 cubic feet).

To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the Trailblazer LT/ACTIV/RS’ power liftgate can be opened just by kicking your foot under the back bumper, leaving your hands completely free. The 500L doesn’t offer a power or hands-free opening liftgate.

Towing

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/08/08

The Trailblazer has a 1000 lbs. towing capacity. The 500L has no towing capacity.

Ergonomics

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/08/08

The Trailblazer LT/ACTIV/RS has a standard remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior, with the optional automatic climate control feature. The 500L doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

The Trailblazer’s power parking brake sets with one touch and releases with one touch. The 500L has a lever-type parking brake that has to be strenuously raised to engage properly. It has to be lifted up more and a button depressed to release it.

In case you lock your keys in your vehicle, or don’t have them with you, you can let yourself in using the Trailblazer’s available exterior PIN entry system. The 500L doesn’t offer an exterior PIN entry system.

Keyless Access standard on the Trailblazer LT/ACTIV/RS allows you to unlock the driver’s door, cargo door and start the engine all without removing a key from pocket or purse. This eliminates searching for keys before loading groceries, getting in the vehicle in bad weather or making a hurried start to your trip. The Fiat 500L doesn’t offer an advanced key system.

The Trailblazer has a standard automatic headlight on/off feature. When the ignition is on, the headlights automatically turn on at dusk and off after dawn. The 500L doesn’t offer automatic headlights.

While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors standard on the Trailblazer detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The 500L doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.

To keep a safe, consistent following distance, the Trailblazer (except L/LS) offers an optional Adaptive Cruise Control, which alters the speed of the vehicle without driver intervention. This allows the driver to use cruise control more safely without constantly having to disengage it when approaching slower traffic. The 500L doesn’t offer an adaptive cruise control.

To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the Chevrolet Trailblazer ACTIV/RS offers an optional wireless phone charging system (Qi) in the center console. The 500L doesn’t offer wireless personal charging.

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