Geneva Motor Show now less than a week away, Fiat has released the details of its latest baby racer – the Fiat 500C Abarth.
And the best news is that we’re going to get a shot at it in Australia, with the cabriolet version to launch locally sometime after the 500 Abarth coupe, which arrives mid-year.
Based on the 500 Abarth, the 500C Abarth packs a healthy 103kW and 206Nm of torque from its 1.4-litre turbocharged T-Jet engine. And Fiat assures us that an SS tuning kit is currently being developed which promises an even higher level of performance.
The Abarth Competizione five-speed MTA gearbox is carried over, complete with torque transfer control, paddle-shifters and LED gear shift indicator (GSI).
In Sport mode, GSI signals at the optimum moments to enhance performance, while in Normal mode it helps to reduce fuel consumption.
Both seem to work rather well. The 0-100km/h sprint takes 8.1 seconds and top speed is 205km/h, while the Euro 5 compliant unit consumes 6.5 litres/100km combined and 155g/km CO2.
So does the Abarth styling overhaul, evident in the two-tone paint job, spoiler, optional 17in diamond-finished petal white alloys and the aggressive lowered stance.
Fiat says top-down motoring can be enjoyed across the speed range without the buffeting produced by other convertibles, while with the roof shut comfort and quietness is on par with the hard top 500.
Safety from the 500 Abarth carries over, including seven airbags (two front, side and window and a driver’s knee), stability control, anti-slip regulation traction control, hill holder for starting on slopes and hydraulic brake assistance to help with emergency braking.
The Fiat 500C Abarth will make its world premiere at the Geneva Motor Show on March 2.
ABARTH 500C – 103 kW 1.4 16v Turbo T-Jet specifications
• Four cylinders in line, four valves per cylinder, 1368cc
• Maximum power 103 kW at 5000rpm
• Peak torque 206Nm at 2000rpm in Sport mode
• IHI RHF3-P fixed geometry turbocharger
• “Abarth Competizione” five-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 180Nm to 206Nm)
• ZPH 4.1.2 floating front caliper with 54mm ø piston
• Self-ventilating front discs, diameter 284 x 22mm
• CII 34 floating rear caliper with 34mm ø piston
• 240mm x 11mm ø rear discs
• Electronic Stability Program
• TTC (Torque Transfer Control)
• Standard: 6.5x16in aluminium alloy wheels with 195/45 R16in tyres
• Optional: 7x17in aluminium alloy wheels with 205/40 R17in tyres
• Top speed 205km/h
• Acceleration 0-100km/h in 8.1 secs
• 6.5 litres/100 km in the combined cycle
• 5.4 litres/100 km in the extra-urban cycle
• 8.5 litres/100 km in the urban cycle