2019 Fiat 124 Spider – On A Street Or On A Track Review By Larry Nutson

2019 Fiat 124 Spider

On a travel and on a track

By Larry Nutson
Senior Editor and Bureau Chief
Chicago Bureau

The Auto Channel

The folks during Fiat whetted my alarm a bit with a week’s time behind a circle of a 124 Spider. This tied in with an entice to attend a 1-day Fiat Track Experience during Autobahn Country Club in Joliet, Illinois underneath a origin of a pros during Skip Barber Racing School.

My travel pulling positively supposing copiousness of time to get reacquainted with a Spider and learn a cars details and outs. This wasn’t my initial expostulate in a Spider though lots of chair time helps modernise a memory.

Fiat has upped a diversion for 2019 opposite a whole brand. The 124 Spider continues to be offering in Classica, Lusso and Abarth models. Powering a Spider is a 160-HP 1.4-liter turbo. Abarth models get a small boost to 164-HP. Power drives a back wheels by a 6-speed primer or an discretionary 6-speed automatic.

Priced to start during $24,995 with a Classica model, a new tradition center-stripe in possibly double convene ribbon or retro ribbon is now offering for $295 on this trim. The Lusso ups things a bit during $27,795 with bigger wheels, leather seats and splendid trim on a A-pillar header and roll-bar cover as good as chrome dual-tip exhausts.

The sportier 124 Spider Abarth sits during a top, labelled during $29,920. With Bilstein competition suspension, singular outing differential, front strut building bar, sport-mode selector, a 124 is lane ready. Options embody Brembo brakes and Recaro seats.

New for a Abarth for 2019 is a Record Monza Exhaust ($995) that uses a spring-loaded diversion valve to cgange empty upsurge for some-more “Abarth Growl.” There’s also a new Veleno (“poison” in English and mystic of a Abarth scorpion) Appearance Group ($495) with red extraneous counterpart caps, red reduce fascia mouth and red front draw offshoot as good as Abarth-branded carpeted building mats and a splendid feet rest.

My highway pulling in a 124 Spider was in a 2018 Classica trim that is fundamentally a same as a 2019. The two-seat cockpit is good allocated and creates for gentle around city or highway outing driving. The case is smallish and a best approach to make full use of a space is to container duffels nonetheless a roll-aboard container does fit.

The 160-horse engine is simply manageable and a 6-speed primer on my Classica was well-spoken shifting. Probably a EPA test-cycle fuel economy ratings don’t hoard too most seductiveness when articulate sports cars. However, they are in a operation of 25-26 city and 35-36 highway. Handling is a fun with a 54/46 weight distribution. The back finish kicks out simply on tough corners though is simply controllable.

The soothing tip can be put down or adult with a one-hand operation and is sincerely morally insulated so that highway sound is not too disturbing. Convertible owners buy a automobile for one primary reason and that is top-down driving, so tip duty is critical.

At a tail finish of my week with a Spider we headed off to Autobahn Country Club. We would be pulling a 124 Spider Abarth as good as a 2-door 500 Abarth on a lane highway course, in an autocross and on a movement pad. The Skip Barber group led by long-time racer Terry Earwood coached us a bit in a classroom and afterwards we matched up, put on a helmets and strike a track.

On Autobahn’s 1.5-mile North highway course, pulling in lead-follow behind a Skip Barber instructor we were as quick as a slowest car. And, no one was slow. We switched between a Spider Abarth and a 500 Abarth honing lane techniques and upping a dilemma speeds.

There’s an approaching doing disproportion between a rear-wheel expostulate 124 and a front-wheel expostulate 500. The 124 Spider Abarth was a faster automobile around a circuit, though a princely Cinquecento – 500 Abarth is truly a lot of fun.

Following a mid-day mangle a afternoon had us using an autocross circuit where we need to remind yourself that slower and well-spoken is improved than too quick and jerky. We also gathering a soppy movement pad in a 124 Spider with a right-seat pulling manager pulling us to boost speed and afterwards yanking a handbrake and withdrawal us to redeem from a oversteer skid.

As an combined bonus, Fiat put us in a newcomer chair for hot-lap ride-alongs in a 124 Spider Abarth Rally. This is a turn-key convene automobile we can buy from Fiat for a small $120,000. The engine is a 300-HP 1.8-Liter corresponding to a 6-speed consecutive transmission. Set adult for rallying and jumps a Abarth Rally uses Kevlar and CO fiber components and weighs 1000Kg (2200 lbs.). A new category record was set in a Mt. Washington Hill Climb by a 124 Spider Abarth Rally.

At a finish of a day we all were a bit fatigued from a continual driving. But one thing was for sure, Fiat’s cars are really fun and beguiling to expostulate either it be on a open highway or on a track.

© 2018 Larry Nutson, a Chicago Car Guy

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