October 17, 2015, 5:00 AM
Fiat’s performance division, Abarth, is making a special edition of the 500 coupe/hatchback to commemorate its involvement as the Official Sponsor and Car Supplier to the Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme (FIM) MotoGP Championship.
Abarth’s version of the Fiat 500 is designated 595, and the Yamaha Factory Racing Edition adds unique cues such as 17-inch matte black alloy wheels, the requisite special edition badge, and a matching brake callipers/side stripe/mirror housings option package. The exterior comes in a choice of seven colours, distinctively set off by slightly darkened windows.
Inside, there are aluminum pedals and a flat-bottom leather-wrapped steering wheel, and can be enhanced with leather upholstery and dual-zone air conditioning options. Xenon headlights are also optional.
Power comes from an uprated turbocharged 1.4-litre T-Jet four-cylinder engine that is boosted to put out 160 horsepower and 169 lb.ft. of torque peaking at 3000 rpm (in Sport mode). Power is sent to the front wheels by a five-speed manual. Zero to 100 km/h reportedly takes 7.4 seconds and top speed is set at 210 km/h, with an attractive exhaust note provided by a Record Monza exhaust system.
Fuel economy is pegged at 7.9 litres per 100 km in the city and 4.9 on the highway, for a combined rating of 6.0 L/100km.
Handling prowess is entrusted to Abarth Koni struts front and rear, with Frequency Selective Damping (FSD) technology, and Eibach lowering springs providing a hunkered down feeling (and look) during higher-speed cornering manoeuvres.
“The new 595 Yamaha Factory Racing Edition adds a new dimension to the Abarth 595 line-up” says Gerry Southerington, brand manager for Abarth UK. “With an upgrade to 160 horsepower, lowered suspension, sporting looks and a great sounding exhaust system, we expect a lot of interest in this car from Abarth enthusiasts and new customers alike.”
The car is now on sale in the UK, starting at £17,420 (about $32,000 Canadian, though it likely won’t make it to Canada).
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