The 2017 Abarth 124 Spider will hit Australia in October with a $41,990 starting price, the company has confirmed today, and a guaranteed drive-away price of $43,500 for the six-speed manual model.
The first 100 examples will also be sold as ‘launch editions’, adding contrasting bumper inserts, tow-hook covers and mirror caps, along with a “[x] of 100” build plate in the cockpit.
The MX-5 starts at $31,990 for the 96kW 1.5-litre engine, but opting for the more powerful 118kW 2.0 unit ups the price to $34,490. Go for the GT version and you’ll pay $39,550 plus on-roads.
Unique looks and quasi-Italian heritage aside, the 124 Spider’s greatest appeal is in its engine: Fiat’s 1.4-litre turbocharged MultiAir four-cylinder petrol engine, tuned by Abarth for 125kW at 5500rpm and 250Nm of torque from 2500rpm.
Abarth says that engine will propel the 1060kg 124 Spider to 100km/h in 6.8 seconds, compared to a close 7.1 seconds for the 118kW MX-5 and a more pedestrian 8.5 seconds for the 96kW model.
Like the MX-5, the Abarth will be offered six-speed manual and automatic transmissions, the latter with paddle shifters ($43,990 plus on-roads).
As reported last week, the 124 Spider will feature an Abarth-specific Sport Mode to tweak engine mapping, transmission, electric power steering and dynamic stability control system for a more engaging driving experience.
A double-wishbone suspension layout works at the front, matched to a five-link setup at the rear. The suspension has been tuned by Abarth’s engineers for greater braking and cornering stability.
Dampers are specialised ‘Abarth by Bilstein’ units, matched with stiffened anti-roll bars to provide both dynamism and comfort.
Like the MX-5, the 124 Spider is equipped with a limited-slip differential. Unlike the MX-5, it’s standard not only in the manual 124, but also the auto.
A full features list is still to come, although Fiat Chrysler Australia has confirmed the Abarth 124 Spider will feature 17-inch alloy wheels, and leather- and Alcantara-trimmed seats as standard.
A Monza exhaust will be offered as an optional extra, “for a truly earth-shattering sound”. (We suspect it won’t truly shatter the earth, but you just never know.)
The 124 Spider goes on sale in Australia from October 7. Watch for full features and details to come closer to launch.
2017 Abarth 124 Spider pricing
Before on-road costs: $41,990
Before on-road costs: $43,990