2013 Fiat 500 Abarth Reviews
Small but evil. These were the words that Karl Abarth used to explain the item of his affections, the first Fiat Cinquecento -- a.k.a 500 - over 50-years ago.
The Fiat Abarth was likely his best success.
Fiat, now firmly a part of US, expects to change all-that.
The Fiat 500 Abarth is the variant of the 500 subcompact that was launched to rave reviews in 2012. Surprisingly miniature, it nonetheless manages to be considered a capable four seat city car. With a 1.4 liter four cylinder MultiAir engine as its base, Fiat has added a liquid cooled turbocharger that increases the engine from 101 hp and 98 lb ft of torque in the normal 500 up to a comparatively whopping 160 ponies and 170 lb ft within this small stinger.
Electricity is sent from a five speed manual gearbox to a collection of 17inch low profile meats. While the back with its twist axle arrangement offers broad track stability a puller as opposed to pusher, the front wheels produce all the oomph. Traction is stellar within this example of the animal in a package.
The end result is a vehicle that requests to be pushed as though it is on the Stelvio Pass in the Italian Alps.
The Abarth has lots going for this, but something that keeps coming front and centre is the sound from its exhaust. Obviously there is something specific here.
Most clearly, the very first head to head competition will be the Mini Cooper S, but we believe that it is also worth cross shopping the Scion FRS and Subaru BRZ, each of which are priced about the same but produce their non-turbocharged power for the rear wheels instead.
Next add a roof spoiler, drop it a bit, and dose it with a generous quantity of scorpions. Oh, and make sure to include the Abarth stripes all about.
For additional emphasis, the Abarth wheels are attractively swathed in exactly the same colour as the body. On second thought, perhaps not. With the soft brake pads, and largish, expect to need to clean them every other day lest they appear fairly dirty.
Laid out in-a driver - centric manner with a somewhat crowded gauge binnacle, the Abarth is not substantially different than its siblings.
While the car is in motion buttons for menu functions are in the best side of the instrument cluster housing but become disabled. A flat bottomed steering wheel with all of the redundant controls is right in front. It offered lean but maybe not really enough telescoping functions. In place yesteryear's faux wood, Fiat has outfitted the whole dash in a body-coloured white panel.
The five speed manual shifter is nicely located on a pedestal at-the foundation of the center stack, located in-such a manner that it nearly offered a cozy rest. Speaking of relaxation, there's an arm rest on the driver's seat, but none for the passenger.
Navigation is accessible via a TomTom system that's essentially a Best Buy-spec unit installed on an unique pedestal setup. It still pegs the needle on the scale, even though it manages to keep prices down versus the expense of an indash type system.
For our preferences, we found the seatback only a bit over-bolstered. It will be a bit heavily padded within the high-centre of the trunk, between your shoulder blades. After a while it can be a little uncomfortable, but the complete space is broad enough so that you will not be bumping shoulders with your fellow occupants.
Back seat legroom, while not just abundant, offered a little relief for a short hop. Perfect for a fast run to the local movieplex or restaurant, the Abarth apparently says it is only the automobile for a double date. The back seats could be folded forward increasing the freight capacity from 9.5 to 26.8 cubic feet.
Unless, obviously, you're a masochist without the sort of auto for road trips, it provided even a driver enough excitement to stay engaging.
It loves to jump out before everybody else at a stoplight and wants to remain there.
But we believe it's in need of a gear for cruising.
Keeping the revs up leads to a great rasp to fit the acceleration, the effect of squeezing a torque monster under the hood of the Abarth. Unfortunately, traveling on a rough road surface manages to join with the engine's snarl too.
In the flip side, the Abarth's steering is gokart quick and it gets even better once you pat the Sport button in the dash, which tightens up the electrical tiller.
We arrived near the promised 31 mpg average, also.
Review: 2013 Fiat 500 Abarth
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