Used Abarth 595
The re-imagining of the classic Fiat 500 line has become one of the motor industries success stories. The 1957 original Fiat 500 featured a quirky rear engine design, which came into its own as a cheap city run-around for the cosmopolitan and affluent young generation of the late fifties and early sixties. By the time of its re-launch in 2007, the Fiat 500 had become a motoring legend and dream ride for many motorists. The public adored the classic Fiat 500, which made the development of a modern equivalent a priority for Fiat struggling to revitalise their flagging city car range. They began by developing a retro clone as a concept car in 2004, which was well received by the motor industry. Capitalising on this popularity, Fiat began production at their Polish and Mexican factories and released their new 500 in 2007. The new Fiat 500 would be one of the first cars to offer customers a truly bespoke experience. It was available in four levels of trim; Naked, Pop, Lounge and Sport. In addition, 15 interior trims, 12 body colours and 19 decal options were given to allow customers to create their own custom look. It has been estimated that over 500,000 different combinations were possible. The 1 millionth Fiat 500 rolled off the production line in 2012.
Bang for your buck
The Turismo and Competizione 595 models are a variation on the successful Fiat 500 which have been professionally tweaked and tuned by Fiat's official motor-sport arm Abarth. Its aims were to introduce engine and trim tweaks to the already successful range to appeal to the performance car enthusiast. Released in 2012 as a limited edition, the 595 would introduce further individuality and comfort combined with legendary racing car speed poise and prowess.
The 2007 Fiat 500 was a quality car. However, the Abarth 595 concept introduces a level of trim not seen on even the top range of the 500 line. The emphasis is on elegance and detail. Outside the Abarth 595 has a custom paint job featuring two tone detail in either Racing Grey or Officina Red. This is complemented by titanium grey details which set off imaginative custom front and rear grilles. The interior is equally eye catching with luxurious two tone leather seats, complimented with custom designed Alutex accelerator pedals and matching footrest and running boards.
What you'll pay
The Abarth 595 is a custom variant of a very popular car, making it highly sought after and relatively expensive. A used 1.4 litre T-Jet 2012 model will set you back around £16,000. As it is still a forecourt car many 'delivery miles' models will exist that have been used as demonstration vehicles and offer considerable discount on the original purchase price. As you might expect from a performance car, insurance can be a little expensive as the Abarth 595 attracts group 28 insurance.
What to check
As a 2012 model, the Abarth 595 should still be under warranty which means that most major repairs will be covered. However, as a design in development for over 50 years and with a recent re-release bringing modernisation to the design, we can be fairly confident that Fiat have got it right.
As its sister car the Fiat 500 is a current forecourt model, parts for the Abarth 595 should not prove difficult to find. Fuel and oil filters can be purchased for around £15 each; brake pads are around £40 a set and a starter motor is around the £50 mark.
How it drives
Engine options are limited to one variation, with the focus in quality rather than quantity. Both the Turismo and Competizione ranges feature a 1.4 litre T-Jet engine which has been tweaked and tuned to provide the very best performance and driving capability. The 1.4 litre, four cylinder, petrol engine produces 160bhp at 5750rpm and a maximum torque of 230Nm at 3000rpm when Sport mode is engaged. This enables the Abarth to reach potent levels of performance, including reaching 60mph in around 7.4 seconds and reaching a top speed of 127mph.
The Abarth 595 is available with a standard manual gearbox or the option to take a steering wheel mounted paddle gear change which enables racing style gear changes. Suspension is smooth and responsive, being controlled by a MacPherson configuration and anti-roll bar in the front position and a rear torsion beam and anti-roll bar to the rear. The package is finished with a shiny set of 17" alloy wheels; cross drilled and ventilated brake disks; and the option to fit colour coded callipers.