Allpar Forums banner

1 - 20 of 45 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
607 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I'm surprised there is no thread about this (unless my search skills have failed me), but Fiat had a test driving event where members of the press were able to drive various versions of the new 124 Spider. Here is what Allpar's own Patrick Rall had to say.

I've now read a bunch of different articles from all kinds of automotive press, and I am happy to say that the car seems to have met my high expectations. Frankly, I always thought that an Abarth engine in a Mazda chassis (with Fiat styling) would be a killer combination, and reviewers are now confirming it. The Miata has always been appreciated as a fun little roadster, but in typical Japanese fashion, it did not bring the torque. When I first heard that the 124 would be using the 1.4t from the Abarth, I knew it would be a perfect fit, because the torque puts the Mazda 2.0 to shame.

Another thing that few reviews have mentioned is how insanely moddable this engine is. Not just by Mopar, but the aftermarket -- there will be chips available for this car on day one.

Anyone else excited/interested about this car? Yes it's a niche segment, but I'm just gratified to see that Fiat did a good job on it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
809 Posts
That Abarth looks terrible IMO, and to pay all that money and only get four more HP seems kind of silly.......yes, yes I know there is more to the Abarth package than 4 hp but they needed more than that. Makes me wonder about the reliability issue with the 1.4 with the boost turned up.

I like the styling from the back and side but the front looks like a Chevy Cruze from last year. I would get the base model with cloth seats (leather in a convertible can be a scorching experience).

I saw these tests last week and was glad to see they were fairly positive from the reviewers but the comments on the articles were something else. We all know that most of the comments are probably fake but a huge % of them were predicting terrible reliability from the Fiat engine....they were happy the car was built in Japan but the Italian engine (not exactly proven to be a winner in other applications) scares a lot of people, including me.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
37,239 Posts
I'd love to have a new convertible car, but to be honest based on prior experiences, I won't own another Fiat.
I know that makes no sense as this shares little with either of the two Fiats I had - but the experience was that bad (and the lack of a dealer network plays a role too).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
607 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Well if you needed to get the engine serviced, then you could always take it to a Dodge shop. But in terms of overall reliability, I haven't heard any shocking horror stories. This engine has been used in various applications around the world for years, so I would hope it's pretty dialed-in by now. Haven't had any issues with mine (500L) in the year-plus that I've had it, but my car has very low miles.

Regarding the styling -- subjective as always, but I really don't get where people are coming from when they say the 124 is ugly or plain or whatever. I think it's really nice.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,363 Posts
No no, i have the non-multiair turbojet 1.4, amped-up/modded too, on the Fiat Linea, here in India, a far heavier and bigger car than the 124 Spider: the engine's a beauty and has been for the last 3+ years. The 1.4 turbo multiair engine's a very fine small-capacity turbo, refined and super reliable too, and widely used in other Fiat and Alfa+now Jeep models. Better by a distance to say the 1 litre Ecoboost from Ford, or Chevy's 1.4 turbo, if not also VW's 1.2 and 1.4 TSi engines.

As has the car as a whole, and my previous Fiats too. i.e., there is rank, and everso dated, prejudice and bias at work. The same as the prejudice and bias (though in the usa home-market) against Chrysler and Dodge vehicles. The dealers, as ever, are the only real issue for FIAT, and for all of FCA's now-thriving/growing brands in europe, the usa and globally, however, admittedly.

So be it. THAT's the whole point of a shared project with another car firm and a single, export-based manufacturing location: lower costs, lower risks in the face of such a gradient of indifference, ignorance and/or 'risk-averse' prejudice ...er...'preference' in some markets. Of course, some errors in Fiat's usa brand introduction were made: notably the poor usa-market implementation of the excellent and reliable ddct gearbox, etc.

Mefeels they need, just like Mazda, to follow this great retro-authentic spider with a hardtop, coupe avatar (like the original and famous 124 range of models). My dad used to own a 124 sedan: what velvety ride quality that car had! They will then be able to sell massive numbers in non-Euro-America as well: latam, and asia-pac. Fiat and Italian marques-in-general are, along with a few now-dead british brands, the original patent-owners, as it were, of this now-diminished genre of beautiful, functional, diminutive and specialised-fun cars.

My great regret here in india is that neither FIAT nor Abarth will foreseeably offer the 124 Spider 1.4 turbo multiair here. The car seems to be another good'un from Fiat (following on from the 500, the Punto, the Panda, the 500L and 500X, the Tipo trio) and should do well, if more for the brand than in sheer sales numbers (given the lack of demand anymore of such small, affordable, specialist drivers' cars.)
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
37,239 Posts
Well if you needed to get the engine serviced, then you could always take it to a Dodge shop. But in terms of overall reliability, I haven't heard any shocking horror stories. This engine has been used in various applications around the world for years, so I would hope it's pretty dialed-in by now. Haven't had any issues with mine (500L) in the year-plus that I've had it, but my car has very low miles.

Regarding the styling -- subjective as always, but I really don't get where people are coming from when they say the 124 is ugly or plain or whatever. I think it's really nice.
No, most Dodge places don't work on Fiats unless they've changed that rule along with the rule on separate showrooms.
The waning number of dealerships (even back 2 years ago) was why I refused to take the deal for a longer warranty if I'd keep the 500L. What good does a warranty do when it's 100 miles to the nearest dealer?
The engine was the least of my worries. The transmission and the electronics were the problem areas.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Robert Johnson

·
Registered
Joined
·
809 Posts
No no, i have the non-multiair turbojet 1.4, amped-up/modded too, on the Fiat Linea, here in India, a far heavier and bigger car than the 124 Spider: the engine's a beauty and has been for the last 3+ years. The 1.4 turbo multiair engine's a very fine small-capacity turbo, refined and super reliable too, and widely used in other Fiat and Alfa+now Jeep models. Better by a distance to say the 1 litre Ecoboost from Ford, or Chevy's 1.4 turbo, if not also VW's 1.2 and 1.4 TSi engines.

As has the car as a whole, and my previous Fiats too. i.e., there is rank, and everso dated, prejudice and bias at work. The same as the prejudice and bias (though in the usa home-market) against Chrysler and Dodge vehicles. The dealers, as ever, are the only real issue for FIAT, and for all of FCA's now-thriving/growing brands in europe, the usa and globally, however, admittedly.

So be it. THAT's the whole point of a shared project with another car firm and a single, export-based manufacturing location: lower costs, lower risks in the face of such a gradient of indifference, ignorance and/or 'risk-averse' prejudice ...er...'preference' in some markets. Of course, some errors in Fiat's usa brand introduction were made: notably the poor usa-market implementation of the excellent and reliable ddct gearbox, etc.

Mefeels they need, just like Mazda, to follow this great retro-authentic spider with a hardtop, coupe avatar (like the original and famous 124 range of models). My dad used to own a 124 sedan: what velvety ride quality that car had! They will then be able to sell massive numbers in non-Euro-America as well: latam, and asia-pac. Fiat and Italian marques-in-general are, along with a few now-dead british brands, the original patent-owners, as it were, of this now-diminished genre of beautiful, functional, diminutive and specialised-fun cars.

My great regret here in india is that neither FIAT nor Abarth will foreseeably offer the 124 Spider 1.4 turbo multiair here. The car seems to be another good'un from Fiat (following on from the 500, the Punto, the Panda, the 500L and 500X, the Tipo trio) and should do well, if more for the brand than in sheer sales numbers (given the lack of demand anymore of such small, affordable, specialist drivers' cars.)

Ummmm there was a HECK of a lot more "errors" in the Fiat roll out than just transmission choices. Car and Driver just tested a 500L and trashed it (and rightfully so on every count). One of the worst things said about the L was that it was bult in the old Yugo plant in Serbia. The L is also the worst of the worst; the least reliable model in the least reliable brand. When the Dart first came out Edmunds.com got a long term 1.4T model and it crapped out on them several times and finally FCA took it back and did not give them another one, so they could not even finish the test. If you read any test of a US based site or mag, the 1.4 gets only fair reviews at best.


2016 Fiat 500L 1.4T Automatic - Instrumented Test

"Meanwhile, chintzy interior materials, misaligned pieces, and numerous rattles are constant reminders that the 500L is built in Serbia at the same factory that birthed the infamous Yugo GV."

"But like a bar patron who’s had one too many, the 500L ultimately is more irritating than charming—even with this better-behaved automatic transmission. Which may explain why American consumers are flocking to Fiat’s own 500X crossover and the comparably quirky Kia Soul instead."
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
607 Posts
Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
Ugh, you're regurgitating the worst kind of anti-FCA propaganda -- the old "Yugo factory" bit. I probably should not even dignify this with a response, but the Kragujevac plant is a state-of-the-art facility that shares nothing with the old Yugo plant except that it sits within the same property boundaries. At least Valiant67 can speak from first-hand experience with his car, but if fit-and-finish were so bad, then he (like me) would probably have not bought it in the first place. There are no such issues on my car... but if any come up, then I will come over to Allpar and complain about them. Americans don't like MPVs in general, but the amount of vitriol leveled against such a simple car is mystifying to me.

Back to the TOPIC, I am curious to see if anybody slams the manual transmission in the 124 as being typical Fiat garbage...which would be funny, considering it is a Mazda unit.

EDIT: The above came across as pretty snappish. My harsh tone is mainly directed at Car & Driver, who really need to come up with some new material. But if you're on Allpar, then you probably know more about cars than most C&D writers.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
37,239 Posts
The 500L was a great idea. The paint was nice and the car was well put together. The form factor was very nice.
The quality of some of the parts chosen was lacking. I'd want an extended warranty to cover the electronics. And a realistic dealer network to service it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,111 Posts
That Abarth looks terrible IMO, and to pay all that money and only get four more HP seems kind of silly.......yes, yes I know there is more to the Abarth package than 4 hp but they needed more than that. Makes me wonder about the reliability issue with the 1.4 with the boost turned up.

I like the styling from the back and side but the front looks like a Chevy Cruze from last year. I would get the base model with cloth seats (leather in a convertible can be a scorching experience).

I saw these tests last week and was glad to see they were fairly positive from the reviewers but the comments on the articles were something else. We all know that most of the comments are probably fake but a huge % of them were predicting terrible reliability from the Fiat engine....they were happy the car was built in Japan but the Italian engine (not exactly proven to be a winner in other applications) scares a lot of people, including me.
Then go pay more money for a Miata Cup with no added HP at all.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
386 Posts
I still can't believe that people actually thought the FIATA was going to get a bump in horsepower over the MIATA.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
809 Posts
Then go pay more money for a Miata Cup with no added HP at all.
I would probably get the Mazda anyway but not the Cup since I prefer cloth seats and smaller wheels. I have driven a ton of Miatas and they are simply one of the most fun cars one can drive. Part of the fun is having a higher revving engine that one can wring out without going that fast. I like turbo engines, I have one now, but some cars are more fun with NA units. The 124 is probably better with an automatic than the Miata is however because of the torque curve. I would have to drive both to decide.
 

·
Mopar-nac The Moderator
Joined
·
26,427 Posts
I still can't believe that people actually thought the FIATA was going to get a bump in horsepower over the MIATA.
I don't understand your comment...

Fiat 124 Spider - 1.4L MultiAir® Turbo Engine Delivers 160 HP and 184 LB-FT of Torque

Fiat 124 Spider ABARTH - 1.4L MultiAir® Turbo Engine Delivers 164 HP and 184 LB-FT of Torque

2016 Mazda MX5 Miata - SKYACTIV-G 2.0L DOHC 16-valve 4-cylinder with VVT, 155 hp and 148 lb-ft of torque

The Fiat 124 Spider does have a bump in horsepower and torque over the Miata.

Mike
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
386 Posts
Mike,

People were hoping for 200 horsepower!!!!
 

·
Mopar-nac The Moderator
Joined
·
26,427 Posts
Mike,

People were hoping for 200 horsepower!!!!
Why would anyone expect 200 hp???

The base numbers for the 1.4T have been pretty much set in stone for several years.

The torque increase over the Mazda engine is what really matters.

Mike
 
1 - 20 of 45 Posts
Top