2016 FIAT 500 Abarth Allentown PA

2016 FIAT 500 Abarth

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New 2016 FIAT 500 Abarth at Brown Daub Fiat for Easton, PA

FIAT has unveiled its latest refresh for the 500, giving the diminutive hatch a tweaked exterior style, a much improved interior appointment, and an updated drivetrain, all with that characteristic 500 flair. For the 2016 model year, the 500 Abarth isn't a dramatic departure over the outgoing model, but it does well to keep the iconic model feeling new. Keeping the 500 from going stale is critical for Fiat, as the automaker has been inconsistent when it comes to moving units as of late. After all, the 500 is one of the brand's most visible products, with a history of offering the masses style, self-expression and mobility.

Under the 500 Abarth's Hood

Fiat's performance-oriented Abarth model comes in 500 hatchback and 500c soft-top form, and it competes with sporty models like the Mini Cooper S. Its turbocharged 1.4-liter four-cylinder engine makes 160 hp. Especially in its first three gears, the Abarth's raucous exhaust note and ample front-wheel power make it sheer fun to drive, assisted by a more firmly tuned suspension that manages not to damage the comfort much. It's still not the car we'd pick for long highway trips, but the ride quality is quite good for a lightweight, short-wheelbase car. Our driving time has exclusively been spent in manual versions, so far; but the 500 Turbo, Abarth, and Abarth Cabrio models all now offer the option of a six-speed automatic transmission as well as their standard five-speed manual gearboxes.

Design of FIAT 500 Abarth

Within its tiny footprint, the Fiat 500 maxes out the interior space--but it's still very short on passenger space compared to, say, a Ford Fiesta, a Chevy Spark, even a MINI Cooper. And occupants will suffer from truly minuscule rear-seat space, as well as the odd ergonomics of the driver's seat. Seats are well-formed, but they're a bit on the short and firm side and we wish they didn't push up so high, limiting headroom. If you truly need a rear seat, try the Fiat 500L tall wagon, which has surprising interior space--but shares very little except a model name with the three-door 500.

For 2016, the latest Uconnect 5.0 provides a 5.0-inch touchscreen for controlling the AM/FM radio, an integrated CD player, and optional satellite radio and navigation systems. Last year, the instrument cluster was replaced with a 7.0-inch LCD display on all models except the base Pop 500. There's also a new trim level, the 500 Easy, which falls above the Pop but below the Sport and Lounge versions.

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The Abarth is its own trim level, in effect, but given the number of powertrains, body styles, and trim levels, there are a lot of ways to customize a Fiat 500. Given the lengthy list of exterior colors, seat color and material options, and engines, transmissions, trim levels, and accessories, the chances of seeing an identical 500 to yours in the wild is vanishingly low. Give us a call today for more information on the 2016 FIAT 500 Abarth!

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