An independent jury chose the technology because of its low emissions and high fuel economy while maintaining power and performance.
The jury comprised 15 journalists from several European countries, representing around 300 million people. The award, held every year, aims to recognise technological innovation in the Automotive sector.
The Fiat 500 TwinAir model was the star of Fiat’s stand at the Paris Motor Show in October. Promising a 15 per cent improvement in efficiency, the 85bhp engine can deliver CO2 emissions as low as 92g/km – making the 500 exempt from UK road tax.
The petrol engine is the lowest emitting on the market, and will help Fiat lower its average CO2 emissions below the current level of 123.5g/km – the lowest in Europe in the first half of 2010.
Two-cylinder engines are rare on modern cars, but Fiat’s MultiAir technology, winner of the award last year, has led to a breakthrough in engine downsizing for Fiat.
This has led to the development of the TwinAir engines, which will be introduced to the Fiat 500 in the European market.
The small size of the engine also means it could easily be matched to an electric motor to form a hybrid or extended range electric vehicle, something Fiat could introduce to the 500 range in future.
According to a Fiat spokesperson, "The 2010 Technobest Prize is further confirmation of the attention that the Fiat Group and Fiat Powertrain Technologies focus on respect for the environment, and their consequent and continuous commitment to the reduction of polluting emissions."