2012 Fiat 500 Engine Oil Capacity

The 2012 Fiat 500’s engine oil capacity is 4 quarts or 3.8 liters. Learn how to change your 2012 Fiat 500’s oil here!
Written by Sarah Gray
Reviewed by Pat Roache
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The adorable little 2012 Fiat 500 is available with a standard 1.4-liter engine or a more powerful Abarth turbo-four. But no matter which engine lives under your 500’s hood, it requires 4 quarts or 3.8 liters of engine oil to run smoothly.
Keeping up with a regular
car maintenance schedule
is essential from the first day your vehicle rolls off the line. That schedule only becomes more important as the years go by, so maintaining the right type and amount of oil in your 2012 500’s engine is more important now than ever.
If you’re looking for ways to help keep your 2012 Fiat 500’s engine operating at peak efficiency, we’ve created this guide for you. Read on to learn more about the 2012 Fiat 500’s oil capacity, the type of oil it needs, and how to check and change it.

2012 Fiat 500 engine oil capacity

Whether you’re driving a 2012
Fiat 500 Lounge
, or a sporty
500 Abarth
, your engine requires 4 quarts, which is equal to about 3.8 liters of engine oil to stay well-lubricated.

What kind of oil does a 2012 Fiat 500 need?

According to the owner’s manual, you should use only American Petroleum Institute (API) certified SAE 5W-30 engine oil for your 2012 Fiat 500. This grade and viscosity of the oil will improve low temperature starting and your 500’s fuel economy. 
The manufacturer doesn’t specify whether you should use synthetic or conventional oil, so it’s up to you as long as the oil you choose is both SAE 5W-30 and API certified. Synthetics and synthetic blends include additives that improve your engine’s performance and longevity. In other words, though it may cost more now, using synthetic oil can help you avoid costly
car repairs
and decreased performance down the road.
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How often to change the oil on a 2012 Fiat 500

Fiat recommends changing your 2012 500’s oil at least every six months or 8,000 miles, whichever comes first.
In addition to regular oil changes, you should also regularly
check your engine oil
levels. How regularly? It doesn’t hurt to check your oil whenever you fill up your gas tank, but checking it at least monthly should be more than enough to ensure your 500 isn’t burning through too much oil.
If you’re like most of us, you weren’t born knowing how to check the oil in your car’s engine, so here’s what you need to do:
  • First, make sure your car is on level ground, and that the engine is nice and warm. If it’s been sitting overnight, let it run for at least a few minutes before checking the oil.
  • Locate and remove the dipstick. It’ll be yellow with a ring on the top for easy removal.
  • Use a rag or towel to wipe the dipstick clean.
  • Reinsert the dipstick, but don’t screw it in.
  • Pull the dipstick out again, and make sure the oil level registers in the safe range indicated by a crosshatch zone.
When checking your oil level, take a moment to look at the quality of the oil itself. Get an oil change immediately if you notice any of these oddities:
MORE: Are Fiats expensive to maintain?

How to change your oil and oil filter 

These days, we’re all looking for ways to save more money. Performing an
oil and filter change
at home is a great way to do just that! It may seem intimidating, but changing your oil is actually pretty easy, and we’re happy to walk you through the steps.
First, you’ll need to collect some essential car tools and supplies:
  • 4.0 quarts of 5W-30 oil and a replacement filter
  • A drain pan
  • A socket wrench
  • An oil filter wrench
  • A rag
Fiats aren’t exactly known for their ground clearance, so once you’ve got your engine nice and warm—but not hot—you’ll want to put your car on jack stands if you’re able.
Now, it’s time to get to work:
  • First, remove the oil fill cap. It will be labeled “oil” or “engine oil,” and it may also have a picture of an oil can on it.
  • Get under your 500 and place the drain pan beneath the oil drain bolt. 
  • Here comes the messy part—use your socket wrench to loosen and remove the oil drain bolt and washer. It gets easier with practice, but expect to get your hands covered in oil the first few times. 
  • Use your oil filter wrench to remove the old oil filter
  • Once all the old oil is drained, install the new filter.
  • Replace the oil drain bolt using a new washer and tighten it to 29 lb-ft.
  • Pour in 4 quarts of 5W-30 oil, and replace the oil fill cap.
Be careful not to overfill your engine with oil. This can cause aeration, which can lead to loss of oil pressure and an increase in oil temperature, both of which can damage your 500’s engine.
With the oil in and all caps replaced, go ahead and start up your engine and let it run for about 30 seconds, then check your oil level. It should be right in the sweet spot.
Now, the only thing left to do is dispose of your used oil and oil filter. DO NOT dump the oil on the ground or throw it in the trash. Automotive oil is an environmental hazard, and disposing of it improperly is illegal in most states. To dispose of it properly, the oil should be placed in a tightly sealed plastic or metal container, and then both it and the filter should be taken to a recycling center for disposal. If you’re unsure where to find a center near you, check out
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