Abarth Pulse Is Italian Brand's First-Ever Performance SUV

Sports Cars / 7 Comments

In a crossover-crazed world, who could say no to this?

If you're a US-based fan of the Fiat brand, things are looking rather glum. Currently, the brand offers just one vehicle for sale, the fairly middling Fiat 500X. The gorgeous 124 Spider and the quirky 500L are no longer available and neither are the Fiat 500 and its hot Abarth siblings, which recently received a few changes. While the brand's future in the United States doesn't look promising, the company enjoys great popularity elsewhere. With the world going mad for crossovers, perhaps the brand needs a new one, and a performance one at that. That's just what's been introduced in Brazil, as Abarth has added its first-ever SUV to its ranks. Meet the Abarth Pulse.

Based on the Fiat Pulse, which starts at approximately $16,900 in Brazil, the Abarth Pulse is a Brazil-only model wearing the scorpion badge.

Fiat Brazil Fiat Brazil Fiat Brazil

Compared to the regular model, the hotted-up Abarth receives an assortment of styling updates, such as a black-colored roof with contrasting side mirror caps, front bumper trim, and side decals. The gray paintwork teams nicely with the red accents, although white and black will be made available. Up front, the Abarth scorpion supplants the Fiat badging and sits on a black mesh grille to give an even sportier feel. Everything is finished off with a set of 16-inch wheels.

The Pulse's powertrain has not yet been confirmed but is expected to be a 1.3-liter turbocharged gas engine with 185 horsepower on tap. Interestingly, this is more powerful than both the Abarth 595 and 695 derivatives, which pump out 160 and 178 hp, respectively. Then again, the Abarth SUV will certainly be heavier. With 130 hp, the Fiat Pulse Turbo can hit 62 mph in 9.4 seconds, so we're guessing this Abarth derivative will be able to do the same sprint in closer to eight, making it more of a warm crossover than a hot one.

Fiat Brazil Fiat Brazil Fiat Brazil

The Abarth Pulse is a rather important car for the Brazilian market. Not only is it the first Abarth SUV to be sold locally, but also the first Abarth model to be sold in the country for years. What's more, it was locally developed and will be produced in Brazil, too. Previously, the sporting sub-brand has sold just two models; the Abarth Stilo and the Abarth 500.

It's unclear as to whether the updated Abarth 595 and 695 will join the Pulse as stablemates. If priced correctly, the Abarth Pulse has the potential to be a great seller in Brazil. The Fiat brand is already the country's top-seller, and adding a performance derivative to a popular crossover SUV can only enhance its appeal.

Elsewhere, the Italian brand is focused on electrification. It recently unveiled its E-Ulysse, and is currently hard at work on the first electric Abarth, due to be unveiled next year.

Fiat Brazil Fiat Brazil Fiat Brazil Fiat Brazil

Join The Discussion



Related Cars

To Top