Abarth will launch the 500C - the company’s first ever convertible - next week at the Geneva Motor Show. This elegant and dynamic car is packed with Abarth racing spirit and the latest performance technology. Sales will begin in the next few months.
The Abarth 500C is powered by a four cylinders inline engine with a total output of 140 HP at 5000 rpm and a peak torque of 206 Nm at 2000 rpm in Sport mode. The engine is mated to a "Abarth Competizione" 5-speed gearbox and sprints the car from 0 to 60 mph in 8.1 seconds, while top speed is 127 mph.
Updated 06/15/2010: Abarth unveiled today new details, images and video of the 500C, the company first ever tuned convertible. Check the picture gallery!
Press release and technical specifications after the jump.
The all-new Abarth 500C was created by developing design without neglecting performance. This is not the first time that Abarth has tuned a convertible, and this time the operation affected both looks and engineering.
Alongside the classic body colour scheme, Abarth is offering two-tone paintwork for the first time on a 500. Although your eye may linger on the new colours, the long, dynamic spoiler reminds you that the Abarth 500C is first and foremost a top-class sports car. The spoiler not only adds flair to the sporting image but also ensures an improved CZ load and more effective air flow distribution. The Abarth 500C is enhanced by new 17” diamond pattern alloys and a white diamond version of the popular 5 petal design.
Another strength of this model is its exceptional climatic and acoustic comfort. Thorough aerodynamic research means that the turbulence experienced with the roof open has been reduced to a minimum, allowing the open road and engine sound to be enjoyed to the full. The Abarth 500C allows you all the sensations of a real sports car: with the hood closed, it offers performance worthy of a hard top version but when the roof is rolled down, the range of sensations and experience expands as you speed along with the wind rushing through your hair to the authentic sound of the twin silencer exhaust.
The electric hood, which traces the car’s roof line, means that the Abarth 500C can be enjoyed at any time of year. A true design object, the hood of the Fiat 500C is distinguished by its sophisticated electrically-controlled movements and its impressively finished and carefully crafted technical features: from the glass rear window to the third brake light built into the spoiler. The hood is available in 2 colours (black and titanium grey) and can be combined with classic Abarth colours as well as 2 specially-created two-tone combinations: the more sporty version (racing black and white) and a more elegant version in two tones of grey. A chromatic liner runs along the two-tone body to simultaneously divide and combine the car’s two spirits: out-and-out sports performance below and the elegance of a cabriolet above.
Performance: Abarth empowerment
The new car is a true Abarth and this is confirmed by a 1.4 Turbo T-Jet power unit that delivers 140 HP, for significant performance: 0-100 km/h in just 8.1 seconds and a torque of 206 Nm at 2000 rpm in Sport mode – a power unit that ensures thrilling performance while also making the Abarth 500C extremely satisfying to drive even during day-to-day use.
In detail, the engine is a 1368 cc 4 cylinder 16 valve unit (turbo charged with a fixed geometry IHI RHF3-P turbocharger) that delivers exhilarating performance. Top speed is 205 km/h while acceleration from 0 to 100 km/h takes place in just 8.1 seconds. This is partly achieved by the overboost function, activated by the Sport button that modulates control unit mapping and turbo pressure in addition to load on the steering wheel. Yet this typically Abarth performance comes with very frugal fuel consumption: 6.5 l/100 km over a combined cycle.
This lively yet smooth new power unit also has proven eco-friendly credentials: the new Abarth car is already able to meet the toughest restrictions imposed by future European standards (Euro 5).
In addition to the engine, the Abarth 500C retains all the engineering features already so appreciated on the original model, such as TTC (Torque Transfer Control). The most important new feature is the race inspired “ABARTH Competizione” gearbox.
The year was 1949 and Karl Abarth was beginning to market his first official product, a racing gearbox with a steering wheel-mounted for the Fiat Topolino, able to offer slick gear shifts under sporty driving conditions. More than 60 years later, the ABARTH Competizione is offered as standard on the Abarth 500C with the same philosophy. It takes the form of a 5-speed gearbox with electrohydraulic control and driver interface created with paddles behind the steering wheel in a configuration that enhances the car’s attributes of thrift and efficiency under sporting driving conditions.
In detail, the innovative gearbox derived from an MTA (Manual Transmission Automated) unit consists of a conventional manual gearbox on which the manual linkage is replaced by an actuator controlled electronically by a TCU (Transmission Control Unit) which optimises both gearshifting and mechanical efficiency. This gearbox also offers auto mode for greater comfort and manual mode for maximum driving satisfaction. A sport setting may be added to both modes, with repercussions on shift speed.
The new ABARTH Competizione makes driving more fun, complementing out-and-out racing attributes with the possibility of shifting up through the gears on the steering wheel as though you were driving a real supercar.
To confirm this car’s paid-up membership of the Abarth club, a special esseesse kit is being prepared as an additional customer offer. The Abarth 500C is aimed at customers who seek all that Abarth has to offer in terms of sportiness and innovation but also design and even more versatile use.
In terms of safety, the Abarth 500C also offers the features already successfully adopted on the Abarth 500. The Abarth 500C was created to exceed even the toughest standards and is one of the safest cars in the entire segment. Stable, effective braking plus excellent pick-up ensured by the 140 HP power unit and predictable handling at all times allow the new car to deal confidently with critical situations. The Abarth 500C is also fitted as standard with 7 airbags (two front, two window bags, two side bags and one for knee protection): a record for this car category. The new model also employs the most sophisticated technical solutions to ensure that the driver is in perfect control of the car (active safety): from ABS with electronic brake distribution (EBD) to the advanced electronic stability program (ESP), from the anti-slip regulation (ASR) system to the Hill Holder devices – w hich help the driver with hill starts - a nd hydraulic brake assistance (HBA) to help with emergency stops.
The Abarth 500C also offers the “TTC” (Torque Transfer Control) which improves the transfer of drive torque to the wheels and, in particular, guarantees excellent cornering behaviour, thus making the car safer and more entertaining during a sporty drive. The Abarth 500C also offers all the properties of dynamism and comfort that allow its users to tackle any kind of route in comfort. These qualities are enhanced by the suspension layout: the front system is a MacPherson configuration while the rear suspension features interconnected wheels (i.e. semi-independent) with a torsion beam. Both configurations selected have been appropriately revised and developed for the new vehicle to ensure great handling and top level driving comfort.
4 cylinders in line, 4 valves per cylinder, 1368 cc
Maximum power 140 HP (103 kW) at 5000 rpm
Peak torque 206 Nm at 2000 rpm in Sport mode
IHI RHF3-P fixed geometry turbocharger
Abarth Competizione” 5-speed gearbox
MTA shift system with electrical actuation of mechanical gearbox and steering wheel paddles
McPherson strut independent front suspension
Torsion bar rear suspension with special calibration and anti-roll bar
Dualdrive electric power steering with Sport mode
Sport/overboost button (modifies effect of Dualdrive electric power steering and boosts engine torque from 180 Nm to 206 Nm)
ZPH 4.1.2 floating front caliper with 54-mm ø piston
Self-ventilating front discs, diameter 284 x 22 mm
CII 34 floating rear caliper with 34-mm ø piston
240 mm x 11 mm ø rear discs
Electronic Stability Program
TTC (Torque Transfer Control)
Standard: 6.5x16” aluminium alloy wheels with 195/45 R16” tyres
Optional: 7x17” aluminium alloy wheels with 205/40 R17” tyres