2013 Fiat 500 Abarth 1.4 turbo from North America
Fun car in a poorly executed package
Intermittent unidentifiable electrical issues i.e.
- ABS failing
- ESC failing
- TPMS malfunction
- Power locks acting up
- Engine failing to start or misfiring
Poor build quality.
The Fiat 500 Abarth is a strange little car. As a performance machine, it's brilliant. The car feels light and nimble, it grips well and is fairly predictable. As to be expected, the engine suffers from a fair amount of turbo lag, but the 1.4 liter 4 cylinder produces plenty of satisfying punch. The brakes are sufficient if not slightly underwhelming, but tend not to fade except with prolonged abuse. All of this in a car that averages better than 30 MPG. Sounds great, right!?
Well... not exactly. Aside from the aforementioned mechanical foibles, this car has hilariously poor build quality. Many of the interior pieces are held together by friction alone and rattle like a tambourine. The driver's armrest was clearly an afterthought; it cracked within weeks of purchase. The base stereo has the sound quality of a turn of the century gramophone. The horrendously refined gearbox is as sloppy as kissing a basset hound, and reverse tends to grind while shifting, even while stationary. Although the fuel economy is good, the tank is so small that I now know the local gas attendant on a first name basis. Finally, the driving the driving position is akin to that of a school bus, sitting high and away from the controls.
All in all, the Fiat is a fun to drive hot hatch with several unfortunate drawbacks that make it not the perfect everyday pocket rocket that I had imagined.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No
Review Date: 28th October, 2015
1st Nov 2015, 03:14
Excellent review of Fiat ownership - the good and the bad - a must read for future owners :)
1st Nov 2015, 13:56
Anyone who reads this review is unlikely to ever be a "future owner". Care to guess which brand is at the bottom of Consumer Reports list of 2016 models projected reliability?
2nd Nov 2015, 00:00
Would that be (F)ix (I)t (A)gain (T)ony? °v°