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2016 Fiat 124 Spider and Fiat Abarth Spider - what we know

New Fiat sports car will launch in 2016, and is expected to be more powerful and more expensive than the Mazda MX-5 on which it's based

Words ByJim Holder

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The Fiat 124 Spider is a new sports car that will launch midway through 2016.

It is based on the same underpinnings as the hugely successful Mazda MX-5, and a faster, harder Abarth-badged version of the car will follow some time after its launch.

The original 124 Spider was on sale for 19 years, from 1966 until 1985, and was pivotal for Fiat's sales in the US market.

What engines will the Fiat 124 Spider have?
Although there is no official confirmation yet, the standard 124 Spider is expected to be powered by the 1.4-litre Multiair engine on sale across the Fiat range.

That should provide it with around 140bhp, which is slightly more power than the entry-level MX-5.

What about the Fiat 124 Spider Abarth?
Unusually, the harder, faster Abarth version of the car won't just be modified, but will also be styled completely differently.

Power will come from the same 1.4-litre Mutiair engine found in the Fiat version, but with power tuned to around 170bhp.

What will the Fiat 124 Spider cost?
Neither on-sale dates nor pricing have been announced yet, but reports suggest the Fiat will be priced at least £2000 above the Mazda because of its superior performance, and what company insiders claim is more evocative styling.

That should mean a starting price of around £21,000.

Although Fiat is well-known for offering substantial discounts, it is not certain the 124 Spider will follow that trend; the car's heritage and desirability, plus the small numbers it will be manufactured in, are likely to mean discounts are harder to come by.