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Will the 2017 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth be slower than Mazda Miata?

Many people like the idea of a Fiat 124 with more power, but what if it isn’t faster than a Miata?

Fiat's Abarth has shown off its new Fiat 124 Spider Abarth in Geneva, and it has a turbocharged 1.4-liter engine with more peak horsepower than the U.S.-Spec Miata. In Europe, Abarth is a sort of sub-brand of Fiat, and it was Abarth that showed off the vehicle. Abarth’s media page also has specifications on the car, and that is what piqued our interest. According to Abarth, the turbocharged 124 Spider with 170 hp will be slower than the U.S.-Spec Miata is. The Fiat 124 is, of course, based on Mazda's design.

In the U.S., our 2016 Miata has a 155 hp, normally-aspirated (non-turbo) engine. Multiple outlets have tested the new Miata from 0-60 MPH and 5.9 seconds is what the car can do.
- Click here for a surprising list of cars the 2016 Miata can beat to sixty.
This is an improvement over the outgoing NC-generation Miata, which was needed an additional half-second or so to make the run to sixty. Maybe Abarth is being overly-conservative in its estimates, but according to its own specifications, the new 124 Spider Abarth takes 6.8 seconds to get to 62 MPH(100km/hour). That is about the same as the NC Miata and almost a full second slower than the U.S.-spec Miata takes.

We are not one of the automotive outlets that harps on single tenths of a second in zero to sixty times. However, 9/10ths of a second is noticeable in cars in this class. It will be interesting to see if the Abarth 124 Spider really is slower than the Miata if we get that car here in the U.S.

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Todd (not verified)    March 15, 2016 - 8:38AM

0 - 62mph requires an additional shift. Look at HP Torque and gearing, this will be quicker than a MX-5.