Abarth Bringing 595 “esseesse,” 124 Rally Tribute To Geneva Motor Show

Abarth has two debuts for this year’s Geneva Motor Show and chances are both will send your heart racing.

The first is the Abarth 595 esseesse (the Italian pronunciation of “SS”) which is inspired by the legendary 1960s tuning kit and the later Abarth 500 edition launched in 2009. The second is the Abarth 124 Rally Tribute, a limited edition of just 124 cars that celebrate the 2018 FIA R-GT Cup victory.

Abarth 595 esseesse

Starting with the Abarth 595 esseesse, it places itself at the top of Abarth’s 595 lineup as it’s equipped with the brand’s most powerful engine, the 1.4-liter turbo-four rated at 180 PS (178 hp).

It features performance-enhancing standard equipment including an Akrapovic exhaust system, Brembo front braking system with perforated, ventilated front brake discs and oversized red brake calipers, BMC air cleaner, as well as Koni FSD (Frequency Selective Damping) rear suspension. The latter is said to improve cornering abilities.

On the tech front, the 595 esseesse gets the 7-inch Uconnect HD touchscreen infotainment system that includes Abarth Telemetry, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto compatibility.

It’s not easy to recognize Abarth 595 models nowadays but that’s a relatively easy job with the esseesse which features several white details including the 17-inch Supersport alloys, Abarth side stripes, and mirror caps. Specific “esseesse” badging and 70th-anniversary logos complete the exterior package. Inside, the small but mean Fiat (sorry, Abarth) feature “Sabelt 70” sports seats with carbon rear shell and carbon pedals.

Abarth 124 Rally Tribute

Abarth’s second Geneva Motor Show debut is the motorsport-inspired 124 Rally Tribute special edition. Celebrating the 124 rally car’s 2018 triumph in the FIA R-GT Cup, the 124 Rally Tribute packs a number of unique features that should make it a collectible.

You’ll recognize it when you’ll see it thanks to the specific commemorative badge on the front fenders and the numbered metal plaque inside. It will be available in only two exterior colors, Costa Brava Red and Turini White, both combined with matte black bonnet — a reference to the historic Abarth 124 Rally which adopted this solution to reduce sun dazzle for the driver. Other exterior details include the gunmetal grey or red mirror caps and bumper details.

There are no major mechanical changes, with the 124 Rally Tribute featuring a 1.4-liter MultiAir turbo-four making 170 PS (168 hp) and 250 Nm (184 lb-ft) of torque. However, the limited edition model does feature a Record Monza exhaust with dual mode system, Brembo brakes, and ultralight 17-inch alloys in Racing White. The rims contribute to a weight reduction of 4 kg (8.8 lbs).

Standard convenience features include heated leather seats, Alcantara trim, Abarth mats, automatic climate control, and the Radio Plus Pack which includes a 7-inch touchscreen infotainment system and Bose stereo.

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  • Matt

    You didn’t even mention that the 124 Rally Tribute comes with a carbonfibre hardtop – that’s literally the most important new feature, as the matte black bonnet is already available on the regular Abarth model.

    • Steve Cohn

      I imagine this will pump up the price a lot. Carbon fiber is not cheap.

  • atomicbri

    Cool cars, but oh Fiat, are you ever going to replace the 500? It’s hitting on 12 years now for the design. I get the original stuck around for 18 years (1957 – 1975) but these are different times and you can’t keep models that long. Get with it Fiat!

  • Anthony James

    I think you’re missing the point. It’s not about outright power but personality – regardless they’re a pretty common site on the roads in Northern Europe.

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