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2019 Abarth 124 Rally Tribute

2019 Abarth 124 Rally Tribute

This is a slick special edition that’s worthy of the title-winning rally car

Abarth is headed to 2019 Geneva Motor Show with a spicy special edition sports car that pays tribute to the Abarth 124 Rally racer that triumphed in the 2018 FIA R-GT Cup. The special edition 124 Spider is appropriately called the Rally Tribute Special Edition, and it packs a collection of exclusive features that celebrates its status as a tribute car to the rally racer that, in addition to winning the R-GT Cup, also collected 40 class victories in the 12 national championships in which it competed. Only 124 units of the Abarth 124 Rally Tribute will be made. Pricing and allocation details haven’t been announced, but expect the special edition 124 to fetch north of $30,000 on account of the base Abarth 124 that starts at $28,295.

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2018 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth

2018 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth

The performance-oriented Miata you’ve been asking for; with an Abarth badge

Rumors that Fiat might revive the 124 Spider, a stylish roadster from the 1960s, surfaced in 2014 and were confirmed at the 2015 Geneva Motor Show, when Fiat came clean and revealed that there was a new roadster underway with Mazda MX-5 underpinnings. Various reports then claimed that Fiat 124 Spider will also be followed by a performance-oriented Abarth version with a more powerful engine and all the goodies that come with the scorpion badge. With the standard roadster unveiled at the 2015 Los Angeles Show, Fiat took the wraps off the performance-oriented version at the 2016 Geneva Motor Show.

Not surprisingly, the 124 Abarth was conceived using the same recipe applied to the 500 Abarth. It features a sportier body kit, a mildly revised interior with Abarth trim, and a more powerful version of the engine used in the standard model. On top of that, Fiat sprinkled a bit of its classic Abarth heritage in order to link the modern roadster to the original 124 Rally, a limited-edition homologation special.

Set to arrive in European showrooms for the 2017 model year, the 124 Spider Abarth is an extremely important car for this tight niche. The main reason for that is because Mazda said it won’t develop a high-performance version of the new Miata. So Abarth will exploit the potential of Mazda’s new chassis and give Miata lovers the power that the Japanese roadster has failed to deliver.

While Fiat has yet to confirm or release data about the U.S.-spec version, a similar model is very likely to cross the pond to North America and join the standard model. Until that happens, let’s have a closer look at the European version.

Updated 04/29/2016: FCA dropped prices on the 2018 Spider Abarth. Check the "Prices" section for the full details.

Continue reading to find out more about the 2018 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth.

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2019 Abarth 124 Coupe

2019 Abarth 124 Coupe

Shortly after Fiat unveiled the Miata-based 124 Spider, rumors that Abarth might build a rally-spec version surfaced the Interwebz. Reports claimed that the FIA was planning to introduce a new sports car category for the World Rally Championship, which would allow vehicles the size of the 124 to take part in the series. Though neither Abarth nor the FIA confirmed the rumor, we went ahead and created a rendering and a speculative review about the Abarth 124 WRC, which, according to current WRC regulations, would have to be a coupe.

Then it occurred to me that if Abarth will indeed build a race-spec, coupe version of the 124, it could also develop a road-going variant. With so many Miata fans clamoring for a full-fledged coupe, I’m sure such a model would be pretty popular with MX-5 enthusiasts despite having a different exterior design and an Abarth badge on its nose. Not to mention that unless Fiat has some sort of agreement with Mazda that prevents it from building different body styles, an Abarth 124 Coupe would be doable with the performance division having the necessary experience from the rally car.

Now you might ask why an Abarth and not a Fiat? Well, turning the Spider into a mass-produced coupe would require a hefty investment and given the fact that FCA isn’t doing quite well financially, Sergio Marchionne wouldn’t approve such a project. Under Abarth, however, the 124 Coupe could be developed as a coach-built vehicle and produced in a limited run and for a more exotic price tag. This would be similar to what Abarth did with the original 124 Spider in the early 1970s, when the 124 Rally had to be homologated for the World Rally Championship.

Continue reading to learn more about the Abarth 124 Coupe.

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2016 Abarth 695 Biposto Record

2016 Abarth 695 Biposto Record

Back in October 1965, Abarth founder Carlo Abarth set a world speed record for acceleration for a class G car at the Monza race track. Abarth was 57 years old when he drove the 105-horsepower Abarth 1000 Monoposto Record, a streamlined one-seater that was built specifically for the purpose of setting international and world speed records. He even had to shed 66 pounds just to fit inside the tight cockpit. That’s no small feat for anybody, let alone someone who was nearing his 60th birthday. Yet Abarth managed to do that on his way to setting a record that still resonates to this day. Now, 50 years after that record-setting achievement, the Italian automaker is paying tribute to that feat with the launch of the Abarth 695 Biposto Record.

The car is based on the 2014 Fiat Abarth 695 Biposto and it comes with cosmetic and mechanical upgrades on the exterior and interior. Only 133 units will be made of the limited-edition hot-hatch, with each model getting a special ‘695 Record’ badge to denote its association with Abarth’s incredible record-setting achievement.

Continue reading to learn more about the Abarth 695 Biposto Record.

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1969 Abarth Scorpione Prototipo

1969 Abarth Scorpione Prototipo

The Abarth Scorpione is different from the Abarth cars that we know today, with the first clue to this being right in the name. Modern Abarths aren’t branded exclusively as Abarths, but rather as a trim/sub-brand for Fiat. The Scorpione is indeed the last car developed entirely by Abarth, although there are still plenty of Fiat parts to be found in it. The car is a reworked tuner version of the Lombardi Grand Prix, itself a heavily reworked version of the Fiat 850. Making the Scorpione doubly tuned, if that’s a thing. This one was sold to be a race car, but was modified once again by its second owner, who made some motorsport-specific changes to the car.

The car was first developed as a Lombardi for 1968, with the Abarth model following shortly thereafter. The Lombardi would last until 1972, but when Fiat bought out all of Abarth in 1971, one of the first things it did was kill off the Scorpione. So with as rare as the Grand Prix is, the Scorpione is even rarer. But the one you see here, from 1969, is a unique version of the car, and quite possibly the most powerful example in existence.

Continue reading to learn more about the 1969 Abarth Scorpione Prototipo.

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The ND Miata Will Underpin an Abarth Roadster, not an Alfa

The ND Miata Will Underpin an Abarth Roadster, not an Alfa

Two years ago, when a collaboration between the Fiat Group and Mazda was announced, the deal mentioned that the recently unveiled Mazda MX-5 Miata will get a brother in the form of an Alfa Romeo roadster built on the same platform. Earlier today we found out that this will not be the case anymore, with the head of the Alfa Romeo and Maserati brands letting it slip in an interview with Car Magazine that the original idea is actually all wrong.

Apparently, the future Alfa Romeo Spider will not use the MX-5 Miata’s ND platform and will therefore not be manufactured at Mazda’s Hiroshima plant. Instead, a yet-to-be-named Fiat/Abarth product will be based on the ND Miata. According to a transcript of the interview that Alfa and Maserati chief Harald Wester gave to the British magazine, it seems that "As far as the Spider goes, the final version is of course no longer the two-seater FCA [Fiat Chrysler Automobiles] codeveloped with Mazda but a derivative of project Giorgio."

As some of you know, "project Giorgio" is a new modular architecture derived from the one underpinning the current Maserati Ghibli and Quattroporte, which will be used in the future on pretty much every RWD Alfa Romeo and some Dodge/Chrysler models. Mazda’s ND platform is still part of the agreement though, and it will be used by either a standalone and long-rumored Abarth roadster or a modern-day variant of the old Fiat 124 Sport Spider, or maybe both. Either way, it won’t be an Alfa.

Click past the jump to read more about the Alfa Romeo Spider.

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2014 Fiat Abarth 695 Assetto Corse Evoluzione

2014 Fiat Abarth 695 Assetto Corse Evoluzione

The Fiat 500 Abarth is one of my all-time favorite cars. It is an uncommon dose of fun and lunacy in our increasingly beige automotive world. What is a mildly eccentric Italian company to do after creating such a machine? Apparently the answer is to create an even faster and hard-core version to take racing.

Meet the 695 Assetto Corse Evoluzione.

Fiat already has an Abarth Assetto Corse for both the 500 and 695 cars, but this new Evoluzione model turns things up to 11. Power is up, weight is down, and in true race car fashion, there are a lot of minor improvements learned over the last few years of competition combine to make repairs and adjustments easier. The car obviously still retains the full complement of FIA-approved safety equipment.

If you already own one of the older 695 Assetto cars and want to stay competitive in the Trofei series, Fiat is offering the full Evoluzione kit as an upgrade.

Read on to get the scoop on all the new upgrades and enhancements.

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2014 Fiat Abarth 695 biposto

2014 Fiat Abarth 695 biposto

The Fiat 500 has tons of history, as does the Abarth line. One of the most famous of the Abarths debut at the Geneva Auto Show all the way back in 1964. This 695 had a 699.5 cc engine with a "whopping" 30 horsepower and could hit a top speed of 130 km/h (36 mph). Well, now 50 years later, Fiat is revealing a new Abarth 695, which it dubbed the biposto, with just a tad more power and a much higher top speed.

The 695 biposto checks in with a healthy 30-horsepower bump over the standard Fiat 500 Abarth and uses the same 1.4-liter engine. It also features an insane dog box transmission that is rarely seen in anything other than race cars, and even those are hard to come by.

On top of the racing transmission, the Abarth 695 drops loads of weight, gets a stripped-down interior and a half roll cage.

On the surface, the 695 biposto look like a massive heap of awesomeness on the surface, but is it still as awesome when I drill down into all of the details?

Click past the jump to read more and find out.

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2014 Fiat 500 Abarth

2014 Fiat 500 Abarth

The Fiat 500 Abarth is back for 2014 with new colors, new wheels and a more comfortable passenger seat design. The 500C cabrio was new with Abarth trim in Spring of 2013, and is expected to be the volume leader for 2014 with almost no performance or interior room downsides versus the coupe.

These cute Fiat 500 twins are looking just as fresh and intimidating as always versus the hum-drum base-engine 500 models, and the rest of the econo-car hatchback market in the U.S. These are two cars for people who have chosen the ultra-nimble hot hatchback route, plus they offer up both driving thrills and the feeling of driving a classic Italian racing brand.

While the regular 500 undercuts the Mini Cooper significantly on price, the $6,000 Abarth premium makes life more challenging versus the hottest Mini performance cars. Even so, the Mini’s dated styling means the trendiest shoppers have long since moved on to something more current.

The 500 Abarth also undercuts the equivalent Mini Cooper S engine on price, but moves this tiny machine past $26,000 for the Abarth 500C - which is uncomfortably close to the Subaru BRZ and other performance cars.

The arrival of the American-spec Ford Fiesta ST certainly complicates the theoretical comparison test for these performance supermini’s.

Logic is typically not the most critical factor in this realm of the new car segment, and the 500 Abarth nails the less-concrete buying criteria like passion, brand image and performance zest.

Click past the jump for the full review of the Fiat 500 Abarth and the new 500C Abarth, with all the updates on the new features and changes for 2014.

Updated 11/7/2013: TopSpeed’s Phillipe Daix got his hands on a 500 Abarth this week and put together a short drive video of the peppy city car. Check out the video after the jump.

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Jay Leno Reviews and Smolders the Tires on a Fiat 500 Abarth

Jay Leno Reviews and Smolders the Tires on a Fiat 500 Abarth

Say what you will about his pop-culture shows, but when it comes to reviewing cars, Jay Leno knows what’s going on. In his series, “Jay Leno’s Garage,” we have seen numerous cars come in and out, but the Fiat 500 Abarth is one of the few cars to come into his garage that Jay hasn’t had the chance to drive yet.

Jay finally caught up with Fiat and snagged up a 500 Abarth, despite their very short supply, to test drive. Jay did what we all would do the second he got behind the wheel of this high-performance compact hatchback... He pushed it as hard as it would go.

You know what, the 500 Abarth took everything Jay threw at it and it just kept asking for more. We are quick to rag on the 500 lineup, mostly because Fiat has consistently added new models based on the exact same car, but this Abarth model is not one that is deserving of the taunting we give the lineup. It truly is a sports car in a compact car’s body.

At one point, Jay decides it’s time to pull a U-turn. Instead of coming to a complete stop, then slowly turning around, Jay quickly yanks up the E-brake, whips the car around, then smolders the tires as he takes off in the other direction. That was quite simply the marque moment in this video.

Man, it sure is good to be Jay Leno! Check out the video to see for yourself.

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TopSpeed is giving away Abarth scorpions

Fiat is promoting their new 2012 Fiat 500 Abarth with a scorpion hunt/giveaway. Find eight Scorpion (symbol of Abarth) scattered around the web and you will enter to win one for yourself!

To show your investigative skills, you need to go to the Abarth Facebook giveaway page, and you will be provided with clues to find your lethal friends. The clues are tough to crack, but if you read this, you are in luck because TopSpeed is giving away one of the 8 scorpions. Check out our homepage and you should be able to grab that one easily. Be fast or they will be gone by March 4th 2012.

Happy scorpion hunting !

Update: Some of you asked us why they could not see the scorpion on our homepage. The Abarth scorpions are only showing their menacing logo if you are connected to internet from the USA.

If you are using ad blocker, you will need to disable those to see the scorpion. Here is a link to how it should look like

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Fiat plans US bound Abarth sports car to do battle with the Alfa Romeo 4C

Now that Alfa Romeo is set to return to North American after a lengthy absence, Fiat is looking at a number of measures on how it plans to return to the US and Canada with a bang as well.

One option that the Italian automaker is planning on pursuing is building a ’more affordable’ sports car to compliment the Alfa Romeo 4C soon after the latter is released in 2013. Word is that this affordable sports car will be built as an Abarth, one that is being pegged to take on a market heavyweight like the Mazda MX-5 Miata. Easier as that is said than it is done, Fiat understands that the Alfa Romeo 4C might not be up to the budget of a lot of American consumers, especially considering that the car is already being touted as a possible rival to a couple of Porsche sports cars: the Cayman and the Boxster.

Should Fiat push forward and build a front-wheel drive sports car under Abarth, we expect it to carry an output of somewhere around 200 horsepower, possibly even going up north to 250. No details have been made as far as what the car is going to look like, but we’d love it if the Italian automaker brushes off an old Abarth classic - the 1968 Scorpione - and build a modern-day take on what we consider one of the sexiest sports cars of the 60’s. That or they could just make some modifications on the Abarth Scorp-Ion Concept that we saw earlier this year.

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