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Italians Get Fiat 124 Spider's Future All Wrong

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Leave it to the Americans to figure out what's really happening.

Last August, we reported that the chances of a second-generation Fiat 124 Spider roadster are practically zero. Although the half-brother of the Mazda MX-5 Miata remains profitable for Fiat, the 124 Spider and 124 Spider Abarth are niche models. In fact, they're only profitable because it's a joint venture project with Mazda. Now that FCA and PSA are finalizing the details of the proposed 50-50 merger, the current 124 Spider's future is in doubt. Well, at least it was.

Italy's Gazzetta Motori reported that the 124 Spider will no longer be built because it's incompatible with the "mass market." Only around 4,000 examples have been sold in Italy since it arrived on the market in 2016. In the US, over 12,000 units have been sold in the same time period, according to GoodCarBadCar.

2017-2020 Fiat 124 Spider Convertible Front Three-Quarter Right Side View FCA
2017-2020 Fiat 124 Spider Convertible Rear Three-Quarter Left Side View FCA
2017-2020 Fiat 124 Spider Convertible Left Side View FCA

However, The Drive reached out to FCA to question the accuracy of the Italian report. The automaker replied in an email stating that "For North America, production continues for our Italian-designed, fun-to-drive 2020 Fiat 124 Spider." It's possible the 124 Spider could be dropped from Fiat's Italian market lineup, but the original report's claim it'll be discontinued entirely is wrong. However, 124 Spider sales have already come to an end in the UK.

Question is, how much longer will the little roadster stick around in markets where it's still sold? Hard to say, though the Fiat brand, as a whole, has not succeeded as hoped for in North America.

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2017-2020 Fiat 124 Spider Convertible Dashboard Layout FCA
2017-2020 FIAT 124 Spider Abarth Dashboard Layout FCA
2017-2020 FIAT 124 Spider Abarth Center Console FCA

The Fiat 500 city car is being retired in all markets, at least the current generation. An all-electric replacement is due in the near future. It appears that as long as Fiat can make a business case, the 124 Spider lineup will remain available for at least the 2020 model year. Beyond that is impossible to know at this time.

2017-2020 FIAT 124 Spider Abarth Front Three-Quarter Left Side View FCA
2017-2020 FIAT 124 Spider Abarth Rear Three-Quarter Right Side View FCA
2017-2020 Fiat 124 Spider Convertible Front Side in Motion FCA

Gallery

2017-2020 FIAT 124 Spider Abarth Center Console
2017-2020 FIAT 124 Spider Abarth Dashboard Layout
2017-2020 FIAT 124 Spider Abarth Front Three-Quarter Left Side View
2017-2020 FIAT 124 Spider Abarth Rear Three-Quarter Right Side View
2017-2020 Fiat 124 Spider Convertible Rear Three-Quarter Left Side View
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