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Author Topic: A ROUGH GUIDE TO BUYING / OWNING AN ABARTH 124 SPIDER  (Read 1258 times)

Offline A

  • Abarth Wannabe
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  • Posts: 28
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    • South Oxfordshire
« on: March 19, 2020, 08:30:53 pm »
Hello and welcome


I thought over the years ahead many people will come to our virtual group exploring the 124 and wanting to check out if it’s a good idea. So here is a personal view point that might help. Feel free to add your own views as owners or questions if you are visiting.

Let’s be clear the Abarth 124 is something unique. It’s not another BMW, Audi or Mercedes. Only about 1700 were sold in the UK. Big picture is that this is an MX5, winner of so many car awards where do you start. Fiat take it and restyle it. Then Abarth add a bit of magic.
There are two versions, Scorpione which has for example no heated seats, plastic dash etc. The Full fat Abarth has these features and a few more. I don’t have a list of the full differences and it’s a personal choice to decide what is key to you.

Let’s get to the elephant in the room, this is a special car which is just so much fun. It’s rare to see another and you drive along just enjoying the experience. I’ve smiled every mile I’ve done to date.

Thinking of buying well there are not many and it will come down to budget. However the decision you need to make is manual or auto. For me I had an auto and will never go back to manual. The auto on this car is not quite as good as my previous VW. But with paddle shift and manual gear shift mode I’ve still got that manual option should I wish. I fully understand and respect that some will just want manual, especially if this is a summer weekend car. The shifting between auto and manual is easy, simply hold the right paddle shift for about a second and it’s back into auto.

Any issues with the car. I don’t drive it enough ;) yep, I just look forward to the drive when before I hated driving. Seriously I’ve not found any issues. Remember this is an MX5 that’s had its engineering tweeted and refined over decades. The handling etc. Look at Richard Hammond’s video online review.

The truth is this is not the fastest car. Personally it’s fast enough, we are not on a race track and it’s faster than 99% of other cars on the road and that’s quite sufficient. Need 0 to 60 in 4 seconds, this is not the car for you. Compared to other sports cars this has its own niche. You just have to decide if you fit the niche.

Here are a few videos to watch.

It’s loud, yep loud, fact, but that’s brilliant and part of its charm / character.

What options?
Well this is a unique car and it’s a personal choice that reflects you. For me an Italian car should be red, but the silver, blue etc all look great too. The seats had I think 3 options and again it’s up to you. Take your time and decide what you want.

Navigation as an option was about £500. But £32 on eBay buys you the SIM card, so every car therefore has NAV.

Bose adds a few speakers and well sounds  good to me but I’ve not been able to compare a car without. A little silver BOSE on the seat tells you.... dealers often take photos that either show this or just miss off this area of the seat. Buyer beware.

Visibility pack. Only about 14% of cars have this and so is rare. It adds auto head lights, brighter LEDs and self levelling, so no dial on the right of the steering wheel plus the for me the massive REAR PARKING SENSORS. However with few cars available I guess it’s a balance of price, age, mileage and then features and you may not have the choice.

The black bonnet, know as heritage, is on about 50% of cars and is again a personal choice. Some will love it, some will hate it. However I look on it like this, diversity is good. These cars are individual and all owners could meet and we will have our own preferences, but the more variety the better. After all when I wave at another A124 on the road that’s their car and mine is mine. We are unique and so are our cars. Want a Porsche, that’s easy, spend lots, a friend has and that’s fine. But for me you sort of select an Abarth 124.

So in essence this car is simply awesome, unique, fun and special. If you have specific questions ask, we are a friendly bunch and we will try and help. But don’t expect a quick reply as we are a small group ;)


P.S. obviously this is just my best effort at helping others, if I’ve got something clearly wrong tell me and I’ll edit. I have put forward opinions, they are just mine and don’t be offended. I’m not trying to shock or annoy, more convey the emotion that goes with owning and selecting an Abarth 124. Want to say something, then add your thoughts.

This car is a hidden gem that over time people will come to realise it’s magic.


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    Offline 124Abarthreplica

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      • Southampton
    « Reply #1 on: March 20, 2020, 09:37:45 am »
    Thank you for taking the time and writing down your thoughts on the Abarth 124 :thumb: