Used test: Abarth 595 vs Volkswagen Up GTI verdict

These two tiny tots both offer maximum bang for the buck, but which one makes more sense used? Read on to find out...

Used test: Abarth 595 vs Volkswagen Up GTI
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What Car? team
8 Oct 2019 08:40

Our verdict

The Abarth 595 has been well beaten here. It may be quicker than the Up GTI, but it has too many flaws to overlook. We’d forgive its cramped rear and suspect driving position if it handled amazingly, but the faster you go, the less composed it becomes. It’s a shame because a bit more front-end grip, less intrusive traction control and better steering feel would make a big difference.

The Up GTI’s victory is a convincing one. Its extra practicality, comfier ride and better driving position, while not the most important things for a hot hatch, make it far more pleasant. And it combines them with precise steering and composed handling. On top of that, it’s slightly cheaper to buy and to run at this age. Just bear in mind that it’s not as effervescent as you might expect.

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1st – Volkswagen Up GTI 1.0 TSI 115 3dr

New Volkswagen Up GTI vs Abarth 595

For Better handling; comfier ride; more practical; cheaper to buy and run 

Against Could be more exciting; intrusive traction control; contrived engine noise

What Car? rating 4 out of 5 stars

Read our full Volkswagen Up GTI used review >> 


2nd – Abarth 595 1.4 T-Jet 145

Abarth 595

For Faster acceleration; more tuneful engine

Against Driving position; numb steering; limited front-end grip; more cramped rear seats

What Car? rating 3 out of 5 stars

Read our full Abarth 595 used review >>


Specifications: Abarth 595 1.4 T-Jet 145

  • Engine size 1.4-litre petrol
  • Power 143bhp
  • Torque 152lb ft
  • 0-60mph 8.0sec
  • Top speed 130mph
  • Fuel economy 47.1mpg (Official average)
  • CO2 emissions 139g/km

Specifications: Volkswagen Up GTI 1.0 TSI 115 3dr

  • Engine size 1.0-litre petrol
  • Power 113bhp
  • Torque 147lb ft
  • 0-60mph 8.8sec
  • Top speed 122mph
  • Fuel economy 58.9mpg (Official average)
  • CO2 emissions 110g/km

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