Should You Buy A Fiat 124 Spider Or A Mazda MX-5?

Comparison / Comments

To sum up: same platform, different engines.

Fiat has just released official pricing for its new, Mazda MX-5-based 124 Spider, and here's what we're wondering: which one to buy? Let's take a look at those official Fiat numbers, shall we. The base 'Classica' 124 Spider begins at $25,990 (including destination), which Fiat claims is the cheapest turbocharged convertible in America. That's only $255 more than the base MX-5 Sport, which is powered by a standard naturally aspirated 2.0 four banger with 155 hp and 148 lb-ft of torque. The 124 Spider features a turbo 1.4-liter with 160 hp and 184 lb-ft.

What both roadsters have in common (aside from that platform) are standard 16-inch wheels, black cloth seats, and LED taillights. The Mazda, however, has LED headlights, which cost extra on the Fiat. The mid-range 124 Spider is dubbed 'Lusso,' and with destination factored, costs about $930 less than the MX-5 Club. Items like 17-inch alloys, heated leather seats, dual-zone climate control, and a 7-inch touchscreen with nav are all included. Now here's where that $30k mark comes into play. The 124 Abarth lists for $29,190, again with destination. That's $875 less than an MX-5 Grand Touring. Upgrades here include a front and rear Bilstein sport suspension, mechanical limited-slip differential, 17-inch alloy wheels, and quad-tip exhaust.

You can even tack on Brembo brakes and Recaro sport seats. The first 124 examples of the 124 Spider will be offered as a limited-edition Prima Edizione Lusso. For $35,995, you'll get an individually numbered car with a commemorate badge and blue exterior paint and premium leather seats. Buyers will also get a matching blue bag, journal with pen, and a poster, but here's why you don't want this edition: it's automatic only. So which of the two roadsters would you prefer to take home, considering they cost nearly the same.

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