2019 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth

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2019 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth Review

The 124 Abarth is the most performance-oriented model of the Fiat 124 Spider range of convertible roadsters. It's a culmination of the superior Japanese engineered underpinnings of the Mazda MX-5 Miata cross-bred with European turbocharged performance and classy Italian design. Its design honors Fiat's roadster from the '70s of the same name, distinctly so in its front and rear styling and traditional rear-wheel drive drivetrain. It retains the 1.4-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine from the Fiat 124 Spider, but with the wick dialed up by four horsepower, letting loose 164 hp in total while retaining the 184 lb-ft of torque. A six-speed manual transmission does duty by default, while the option for a six-speed automatic is available as well. But the scorpion badging is a sign of more than power, and the 124 Spider Abarth has been given a performance-tuned suspension and a limited-slip differential along with a sport and normal driving mode selector.

Read in this review:

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2019 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth Changes: What’s The Difference vs The 2018 124 Spider Abarth?

Now standard in the Abarth is an available Record Monza exhaust system, along with a seven-inch touchscreen infotainment system and a now mandatory rearview camera. The roadster can be tailored with the Veleno Appearance Group package for 2019 which includes Abarth-branded floor mats, an aluminum-look metal footrest, and red mirror caps, tow-eye cover, and red front-fascia lip. The Technology Group package, equipped as standard to the Abarth, now includes keyless entry and SiriusXM satellite radio.

Pros and Cons

  • Fun and affordable sports-car
  • Agile handling
  • Accurate steering and brakes
  • Effective sports mode
  • More hardcore than standard 124 Spider
  • Easy to use soft-top
  • Poor sound insulation
  • Very limited trunk and cargo space
  • Underperforming automatic gearbox
  • Confined cockpit and limited seating adjustments
  • MX-5 Miata still has more power

What's the Price of the 2019 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth?

The 124 Spider Abarth is essentially the top ranking trim of the 124 Spider line-up and carries a base MSRP of $29,290 when equipped with the standard six-speed manual gearbox. A six-speed automatic is available at an extra $1,350. All prices are excluding tax, registration, licensing, and a $1,495 destination charge.

Best Deals on 2019 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth

2019 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth Trims

See trim levels and configurations:

Trim Engine Transmission Drivetrain Price (MSRP)
1.4L Turbo Inline-4 Gas
6-Speed Manual
Rear-Wheel Drive
See All 2019 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth Trims and Specs

2019 124 Spider Abarth Exterior

2019 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth Front View Fiat
2019 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth Front View 1 Fiat
2019 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth Rear View Fiat
See All 2019 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth Exterior Photos


  • Length 159.6 in
  • Wheelbase 90.9 in
  • Height 48.5 in
  • Max Width 68.5 in
  • Front Width 58.9 in
  • Rear Width 59.1 in
  • Curb Weight 2,477.0 lbs

Exterior Colors

  • Puro White Tri-Coat Pearl +$595
  • Brillante White
  • Chiaro Silver Metallic
  • Forte Black Metallic
  • Ceramica Gray Metallic, Build Out: 6/4/2019
  • Hypnotique Red
  • Mare Blue Metallic

2019 124 Spider Abarth Performance

2019 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth Front View Driving Fiat
2019 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth Rear View Driving Fiat
2019 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth Exhaust Fiat

Engine and Transmission

  • Engine
    1.4L Turbo Inline-4 Gas
  • Transmissions
    6-Speed Automatic, 6-Speed Manual
  • Drivetrain

Handling and Driving Impressions

Despite carrying an extra 40 lbs over the base 124 Spider derivatives, the Abarth's added bespoke sports suspension carries the weight better, and along with the added limited slip differential, improves and sharpens the roadster's already unerring handling dynamics. Combined with the near 50:50 weight distribution, the Abarth delivers legendary maneuverability while curbing body roll to levels bringing it closer to those of the MX-5 Miata.

The re-tuned engine delivers an extra four horsepower over the 124 Spider derivatives, but what buyers will want more than the power is the optional Record Monza exhaust. Although it delivers no outright performance improvements, the special exhaust gives the Abarth's turbo engine a completely different, more aggressive sports car sound, more akin to that of an '80s Italian rally machine. It's a cacophony of parps and flatulence mixed with the sound of marbles in a can, making the 124 Abarth sound far quicker than it really is.

Steering is light and precise, accurately communicating road feel with the driver. A Sport mode selector on the Abarth also differentiates the driving experience from the Miata and lesser 124s. Throttle sensitivity and steering weight is increased and the stability control system is pared back a bit for even greater body control and handling response. Disabling traction and stability control allow for a whole lot more fun on the track in the sporty roadster which, when plowing into a turn correctly balanced, flirts with the line between adhesion and oversteer joyfully.

Gentler abrasions, bumps, and dips are well-absorbed by the Abarth's tuned suspension, while the sports car's low proximity to the ground makes for a rougher ride over larger undulations and uneven road surfaces. At higher speeds, noise and vibration are prominent within the cabin even with the soft top raised.

2019 124 Spider Abarth Interior

2019 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth Driver Seat Fiat
2019 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth Front Seats Fiat
2019 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth Seat Details Fiat
See All 2019 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth Interior Photos

Seating and Interior Space

  • Seating capacity
  • Front Leg Room 43.1 in
  • Front Head Room 37.4 in

2019 124 Spider Abarth Trunk and Cargo Space

2019 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth Rear View 1 Fiat
2019 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth Rear View 2 Fiat
2019 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth Rear View Driving 1 Fiat
  • Trunk Volume
    4.9 ft³

2019 124 Spider Abarth Safety and Reliability


  • Basic:
    4 Years \ 50,000 Miles
  • Drivetrain:
    4 Years \ 50,000 Miles
  • Corrosion:
    12 Years \ Unlimited Miles
  • Roadside Assistance:
    4 Years \ Unlimited Miles

US NHTSA Crash Test Result

NHTSA safety ratings are not available at this time.

Verdict: Is the 2019 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth A Good car?

The 2019 rendition of the 124 Abarth hasn't changed much at all since its debut in 2016. Despite the additional power Fiat has endowed the Abarth derivative with, it still lacks the potency and smoothness of rivals, although the turbocharged torque will be a distinct advantage over naturally aspirated rivals from Mazda and Toyota for buyers residing in higher altitude states. Nevertheless, Fiat would do well to give the Abarth a greater performance advantage over lesser 124 models if it really wanted to establish the model as a true performance derivative. The upgrades to the suspension and the addition of the limited slip differential have sharpened up handling dynamics substantially, bringing the 124 Abarth closer to rivals in this regard, but it's still not quite up to the standards set by the MX-5.

While the 124 Abarth carries a lower price tag than comparable trims from competitors, it's worth noting that in order to get the full experience, you'll still need to add a few options where rivals are more comprehensively specced for the price.

The 124 Abarth is an immensely fun roadster, and the improvements over standard models are welcome, but the Mazda MX-5 is still the unbeaten benchmark in this segment.

What Fiat 124 Spider Abarth Model Should I Buy?

With only the one high-performance Abarth-badged 124 Spider available, Fiat makes the decision for you. To get the most authentic Abarth experience possible we recommend equipping the roadster with the available Brembo brakes for better stopping performance, the Record Monza exhaust system for a more immersive auditory experience, the Visibility package for the LED headlights, the Navigation and Sound package, and Convenience package for extra creature comforts. It pushes the price up substantially, and should you throw in the supportive Recaro bucket seats you're looking at a $38,255 asking price.

Check out other Fiat 124 Spider Styles

2019 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth Comparisons

Mazda MX-5 Miata Mazda
Subaru BRZ Subaru
CompetitorHorsepowerMPGPrice (MSRP)
Fiat 124 Spider Abarth164 hp26/35 mpg$29,390
Mazda MX-5 Miata 181 hp26/34 mpg$27,650
Subaru BRZ 228 hp20/27 mpg$28,595

2019 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth vs Mazda MX-5 Miata

For 2019, the Mazda MX-5 Miata has received some significant improvements including 17 percent more horsepower than its previous model from a low-key 155 hp up to 181 hp. The Miata's naturally aspirated 2.0-liter engine delivers more horsepower but not as much torque as the Abarth's 1.4-liter turbocharged engine. Both cars handle exceptionally well, but the Miata is more driver-focused despite Fiat's sport-tuned suspension and limited slip diff equipped to the Abarth derivative. The Fiat is now firmer and more composed but lacks the MX-5's composure over secondary imperfections. Both models have identically confined interior room, but for 2019 the Miata offers height and reach adjustable steering, making it more comfortable than the Fiat's height-only steering adjustment. Both cars have options for a six-speed manual or automatic transmission and available Recaro sports seats for enthusiasts. Making a choice between the two can be tough, especially with the Fiat's upgrades to the Abarth derivative, but despite the enhancements, the MX-5 Miata is still the better sports car, largely due to having a superior ride and powertrain.

See Mazda MX-5 Miata Review

2019 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth vs Subaru BRZ

In the same price range as the Abarth, the 2019 Subaru BRZ is a coupe-styled rear-wheel-drive sports car. Along with the Abarth, the Subaru comes with a six-speed manual or automatic transmission. It boasts a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine outputting 205 horsepower and 151 lb-ft of torque, just short of the Abarth's 181 lb-ft of torque. The Subaru is a two-door, 2+2 seater with foldable rear seats and offers more trunk and cargo space than the Abarth. It also delivers far more power down low and lacks the turbo-lag found in the Abarth's 1.4-liter turbocharged engine. The Abarth however, features higher quality interior comforts and a superior infotainment system, where the Subaru's seems outdated with only a 6.2-inch touch-screen multimedia display. In this case, a decision hangs off of whether you prefer the comforts and top-down driving experience of the Abarth, or the performance orientated and exhilarating driver engagement the Subaru BRZ has to offer.

See Subaru BRZ Review

2019 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth Popular Comparisons

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