A few weeks ago, we brought you the sad news that Mazda has no need for a “Speed” version of its new Miata. (Cue sad horns). All is not lost, however: If what Fiat COO Alfredo Altavilla said to AutoExpress is true, the Italian version, the Fiat 124 Spider expected to make its debut later this year (and rendered above), appears poised to be offered in a more, um, hairy-chested form. “You want performance? There will be an Abarth version,” Altavilla said, at the same time characterizing the base car as a “comfortable” model.
Fiat’s U.S. PR team would not confirm the accuracy of either the quotes or the very compelling renderings of the car attendant to them, but we hope they all are spot on.
Just as encouraging are Altavilla’s comments about the purpose of Abarth as a performance brand, not a purveyor of wheels and stickers. “Abarth is all about performance, and so I’ve told my team to stop working on colors and trims,” he said. “Any new version of an Abarth car should deliver some sort of a performance enhancement, otherwise it is useless.” Well, we can certainly all agree on that.