Fiat’s 124 Spider is getting an Abarth massage and we’ve scooped one of the first prototypes on the road.
Even if you’re unsure whether there are bigger air vents hiding behind the camouflaged front bumper or if the side sills are slightly bigger or not than on the regular 124 Spider, those quad exhaust pipes at the back leave no question about what this is.
That said, and besides the meatier wheels, it’s hard to tell if and what other kind of styling upgrades have been made to the two-seater car from these images, but we do expect modified bumpers, spoiler ad-ons and some changes to the interior, including sport seats and Abarth-specific trim accents on the production model.
The Abarth-branded 124 Spider aims to be the performance model of the Mazda MX-5-based series employing more powerful versions of the Italian firm’s 1.4-liter MultiAir II turbocharged four, which is currently rated at 160PS (158hp) in the North American Fiat roadster, and 140PS (138hp) on the European spec version.
It’s believed that Abarth will offer the 1.4-liter unit in least two power levels, producing around 170hp and 190hp respectively, with the US market to likely get the latter only, while there’s also a possibility of a third variant with up to 220 horses, though this model could very well get a different engine.
The MX-5’s limited-slip differential should come as standard on the Scorpion-badged model, and together with a revised suspension, offer improved agility and handling over the standard 124 Spider.
While the Abarth model has been officially confirmed, company bosses have declined to say when it will go on sale. Nevertheless, we think it should hit the market within the next 18 months.
Photo Credits: CarPix for CarScoops