Ever since the stunning Fiat 124 was released in November last year, we’ve been waiting for Abarth’s ‘hot’ version. Finally it’s here, and we’re not disappointed with the results. Revealed earlier today at the Geneva motor show, the Abarth 124 Spider has received a host of upgrades over the base car. The 1.4-litre MultiAir II four-cylinder engine has been given a power boost from 138bhp to 178bhp, the suspension has been reworked and the car has received a limited-slip differential.
Both automatic and manual transmissions will be available - the automatic coming with paddle shifters - but let’s face it, there’s only one sensible choice for petrolheads. And if you can row the gears quick enough, the little Abarth should be able to go from 0-62mph in a respectable 6.8 seconds, going on to a top speed of 143mph. This makes it significantly quicker that its 2.0-litre Mazda MX-5 brother, which is half a second slower.
The Spider weighs 1060kg, has a 50/50 weight distribution and gets double-wishbone suspension up front and a five-link set up for the rear. The car also receives high-quality goodies like Brembo brakes with front aluminium callipers, a ‘Record Monza’ exhaust and beautiful 17-inch wheels.
On the aesthetics front, the car is a complete stunner. Reminiscent of the 1972 Fiat Abarth 124 Rally car, the Spider is treated to a matt black bonnet and bootlid. The car is also festooned with Abarth logos; a trend we usually hate, but for some reason they look ‘right’ here.
Inside, the car looks equally special, with swathes of Alcantara everywhere. Unfortunately, standard equipment is fairly basic with climate control and cruise control being the main stand-out features. However, you can spec a seven-inch infotainment system with sat-nav, Bluetooth and DAB as an option if you can’t live without gadgets.
The Abarth Spider will go on sale in Europe in September and will be priced around £31,000, a significant premium over the range-topping Mazda MX-5, the £24,295 Sport Recaro. But then again, you get something that looks far more special.
Which one would you guys buy: the top-of-the-line MX-5, or the Abarth Spider? Let us know in the comments!