Mike Stevens | Feb 18, 2010

ANNOUNCED BY CEO Sergio Marchionne last year, Fiat will show a 900cc turbo-charged two-cylinder 'TwinAir' petrol engine at Geneva next month.

Following in the footsteps of its two-cylinder-engined 50s predecessor, the Fiat 500 will be the first - and possibly only - Fiat to get the little engine.

The new engine develops around 63kW, only 10kW less than the 500's current 1.4 litre inline-four. The real advantage to the new engine however is on the emissions front. Fiat hasn't offered specific numbers, but the TwinAir engine is expected to emit no more than 100g/km.

When last reported, there was speculation that a second turbo-charged version will be added to the range in the future, producing 78kW. A naturally aspirated version has also been reported, offering around 48kW.

Whether the two-cylinder engine will be offered with the Australian-delivered 500 remains to be seen, but with Australia's emissions laws more relaxed than the strict European requirements, a local debut seems unlikely.

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