When Abarth unveiled the new 124 Spider at the Geneva Auto Show, executives stressed we were looking at a Euro-spec model that wouldn’t necessarily be sold in the United States. The version we’re getting, called 124 Spider Elaborazione Abarth, has just been announced ahead of its debut at the New York Auto Show.
Power is provided by a turbocharged 1.4-liter four-cylinder engine that makes 160 horsepower at 5,500 rpm and 184 pound-feet of torque at 2,500 rpm. It spins the rear wheels, and it can be paired with either a six-speed manual transmission or an optional six-speed automatic unit with shift paddles. If those specifications sound familiar, it’s because the Elaborazione Abarth uses the exact same powertrain as the regular 124 Spider.
Simply put, our Abarth-badged Spider is down on power compared to the one sold in Europe, which explains why it gets a different name. The good news is that Fiat has added a mechanical limited-slip differential, a specific sport-tuned suspension, as well as a sport mode that makes the throttle more responsive and improves the feel of the steering system. An upgraded brake system developed by Brembo is offered at an extra cost.
Visually, the Elaborazione Abarth stands out from the standard 124 Spider thanks to a muscular-looking front fascia with a deeper front bumper that incorporates a large air dam, and a flat black hood that reduces glare while paying homage to the original Abarth-tuned 124 built during the 1970s. The cabin receives red stitching on the seats, the door panels, and the center console, as well as aluminum pedal caps, an Abarth-specific instrument cluster, and a new shift knob. The list of options includes Recaro bucket seats upholstered in a combination of leather and Alcantara.
The 2017 Fiat 124 and the Elaborazione Abarth model will both go on sale this summer. Pricing information and performance specifications will be published in the coming weeks.