Fiat 500T, Abarth Convertible Coming In 2013?
Car and Driver is reporting yet another model for the Fiat 500 lineup, using a detuned version of the Abarth 1.4L turbo engine in more discreet packaging. The model, dubbed the 500T, will also arrive in tandem with a 500C Abarth.
The C/D folks uncovered government documents showing evidence of both a coming 500T Sport, as well as a 500C Abarth. The 500T Sport will likely use the European-spec Abarth motor, rated at 133 horsepower (ours gets 160, while the rest of the world can buy modification kits to boost output), as well as the Abarth’s elongated front bumper, to accommodate the larger turbo and intercooler setup. Photos of the 500T Sport surfaced at a Fiat fan site earlier this year, and the visual changes appear minimal. The Abarth 500C is pretty self-explanatory. A slower, heavier, wind-in-your-hair version of the Abarth that few of us will get excited about.
Having test-driven a 500, Fiat is crazy to offer a weaker engine than the Abarth's 160 HP. The base engine is gutless; the 500T should really be the base engine.
Only Fiat would try to sell a small stylish car in the USA and the best part about it is that they do not seem to be failing. Not massive sales but enough.
So they're de-tuning the engine and making the car heavier? Shouldn't they be... giving it a little more power to deal with the weight?
My convertible rule: if the top is down, and you can't tell the car is a convertible from a profile view, the car is NOT a convertible. You can call it any tacky, trademarked thing you want, but it isn't a convertible. Big sunroo? Sure.. Sky view canvas top? Why not. Convertible? Hell to the no.