2017 Fiat 124 Spider Set For 2016 Showroom Arrival

Cameron Aubernon
by Cameron Aubernon

For those who want their 2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata to have a more Italian flair, the 2017 Fiat 124 Spider will hit showrooms in 2016.

Prior to being unloaded from many a container, the 124 Spider will make its global debut at either Frankfurt or Los Angeles later this year, reports Edmunds.

According to Fiat Brand for North America boss Jason Stoicevich, the roadster would not be a rebadge of the Miata, proclaiming Fiat would put its own style on the model once offered to Alfa Romeo. Parent company FCA later decreed that all Alfas would be designed and engineered in the brand’s native Italy, shuffling the 124 Spider off to Fiat in so doing.

Power is expected to come from Fiat’s 1.4-liter four-cylinder, while pricing and passenger configuration — 2+2 or two-passenger — are among the mysteries left unsolved for now. Both the Spider and the Miata will be assembled at Mazda’s facility in Hiroshima, Japan.

Once stateside, it will be the crown jewel for Fiat’s U.S. lineup — currently consisting of the 500, 500e, 500L and 500X — while competing against the MINI Cooper Roadster, Porsche Boxster, and the aforementioned Miata.

[Photo credit: Rex Gray/ Flickr]

Cameron Aubernon
Cameron Aubernon

Seattle-based writer, blogger, and photographer for many a publication. Born in Louisville. Raised in Kansas. Where I lay my head is home.

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  • Bd2 Bd2 on Apr 28, 2015

    While I can appreciate the return of the Spider (even if it basically ends up as a rebadge), not sure how Fiat is going to thrive in the US offering niche after niche model. And trying to establish AR as a competitor to the Germans is going to be a tough, tough road. Marchionne really has to thank the gods for letting Chrysler (and more specifically Jeep) fall into his lap.

    • Vulpine Vulpine on Apr 28, 2015

      You might be surprised, bd2. The Fiat 500 itself is a surprising little car and the 124 will probably be pretty good too. However, like Mini for BMW, the Fiat brand itself won't be their mainstream brand except maybe in densely urban areas. Chrysler, Dodge and especially Jeep and Ram are doing very well in supporting the Fiat brand both here in the States and apparently also in Europe. The Jeep Cherokee has proven surprisingly popular, despite riding on essentially a Fiat platform and the Jeep Renegade already looks headed the same way. Meanwhile, Jeeps other models don't seem to be hurting either. So who cares now if Fiat isn't a runaway success? They get exposure and they are proving to be a more capable and more reliable car than their 40-year-old predecessors so far. And for a single or childless couple, they're almost perfect with its low price and 30mpg in-town fuel mileage while still offering peppy performance.

  • Jerome10 Jerome10 on Apr 28, 2015

    I am quite sure I would never buy a Fiat. I am a Miata lover and would see zero reason to buy the Fiat over the Miata. With 1 exception... If they do nothing but put the Abarth motor and that exhaust on the car, I will head to whatever Fiat dealer is in my area and put that in the garage instead. I am continually blown away by how unbelievably good that 500 Abarth sounds. That's how I want my Miata to sound. Just incredible, especially for a puny 4 cyl.

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    • Power6 Power6 on Apr 28, 2015

      @GeneralMalaise I recall reading the Chrysler SRT engineers that tuned the Abarth for the US market, generally making it better than the original, specd the exhaust, clearly inspired by the muffler-less SRT-4. I never tired of that exhaust sound and scared the crap out of pedestrians in parking garages lol.

  • Chan Chan on Apr 28, 2015

    The modern 500 seems to be holding up quite well in reliability. The interiors aren't great, but they sure have some cute quirks and ergonomic niggles that would not pass in, say, a Corolla. The Abarth is probably the best fun-per-dollar bargain available in the States, partly due to the steep discounts available at US dealers. No tiny little city car has the right to sound that naughty, and the fact that it's Italian (at least in concept) somehow makes it all acceptable!

  • Tjh8402 Tjh8402 on May 01, 2015

    While I think the NA 1.4 would be adequate for Europe, I don't see it flying in the US. The standard 500 is adequate, but no more. A 2 seat sports car will have to turn in more than adequate performance, so I would imagine the 1.4 Abarth spec motor will be the engine of choice. It will at least allow the Fiat to match the Miata's performance. As others have said, I just hope it sounds as good as my Abarth. That is a proper sports car noise. Would be awesome if it offers the same great warranties that the rest of the Fiat line up offers. Can't be a lifetime unlimited mileage bumper to bumper one.

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    • Vulpine Vulpine on May 02, 2015

      @Vulpine We will see, my friend. Too many here are insisting it needs massive power, but I think that goes against what the car was in its heyday. There will always be those who consider speed as king, but for me, an open car means a relaxing ride. A roadster is to people on four wheels what a Harley or Gold Wing is to bikers; a comfortable open cruiser for enjoying the ride.