RE: Abarth 124 Spider | Spotted

RE: Abarth 124 Spider | Spotted

Wednesday 10th July

Abarth 124 Spider | Spotted

The Abarth is no more in the UK, so maybe now's the time to buy a secondhand one...



Abarth isn't bringing any more 124 Spiders to the UK, not for the foreseeable future at least. FCA's UK boss, Arnaud Leclerc, told Top Gear earlier this year that, despite the country being the world's number one market for Abarth as a whole, there was no profit in bringing the cars here. There won't have been any profit for the previous owner of today's Spotted either, who would have bought the car for around £30,000 when new, only to find it worth over £11,000 less just 8,000 miles later.

That makes it a steal for its next custodian, though, who'll get themselves a cracking little roadster for a very reasonable price. A roadster which is based, of course, on the universally adored Mazda MX-5, sharing as it does that car's chassis, interior and open-top appeal.


With the Abarth carrying an additional 60kg than the Mazda and offering 630cc less, initial comparisons between the two don't look great for the 124. But its four-pot motor is turbocharged, meaning it boasts 184lb ft to the MX-5's 148 and bestowing it with more easily accessible real world performance. Its firmer suspension can mean it rides more harshly over bumpy surfaces, but also enables drivers to take full advantage of its limited-slip diff, cornering harder and faster than the slightly squishier Japanese machine.

Back in 2017 we took the chance to put our long-term Abarth head to head with its 2.0-litre MX-5 sibling. The 124 lost, but not because it was the lesser of the two cars. In fact, Matt called it "the more satisfying and enjoyable car to drive, thanks to its torque and more focused suspension", but adjudged the difference between the two to not be worth the £7,000 premium which the Italian commanded as tested.


Now, though, with this nearly new car listed at just £18,950, the equation is somewhat different. The Mazda will have depreciated too, of course, but with the only comparable 2018 MX-5 in the classifieds priced at £17,500, the difference between them is not what it once was.

With its slightly larger proportions, more conservative styling and fabulously roarty exhaust, then, the Abarth provides a solid alternative to the world's best-selling roadster. Of course, those who prefer the Mazda will likely find their allegiance unswayed, but for buyers who previously considered going in a different direction, there may never have been a better time to take the plunge.




SPECIFICATION - ABARTH 124 SPIDER
Engine:
1,368cc, four-cyl turbocharged
Transmission: 6-speed manual, rear-wheel drive
Power (hp): 170@6,500rpm
Torque (lb ft): 184@2,500rpm
0-62mph: 6.8sec
Top speed: 144mph
First registered: 2018
Recorded mileage: 8,000
Price new: ~ £30,000
Price now: £18,950

See the full ad here.

Author
Discussion

retrosonic

Original Poster:

7 posts

61 months

Wednesday 10th July
quotequote all
so 1st owner probablly weighed it in for £17+k ....Ouch !

Nerdherder

860 posts

40 months

Wednesday 10th July
quotequote all
Depreciation like this was to be expected.. Still good to point out PH.

Luke.

7,895 posts

193 months

Wednesday 10th July
quotequote all
Love ours and the lease deals at the time were silly cheap. We're paying just £140 a month. Can't think of anything better for the money.

je777

289 posts

47 months

Wednesday 10th July
quotequote all
I'd suggest being the 3rd or 4th owner - once someone else has lost yet another enormous bundle of cash.
I'm not a fan of its looks, but give it another three years and this thing could be dirt cheap.

Vocht

1,333 posts

107 months

Wednesday 10th July
quotequote all
These can be tuned to 200PS/290Nm pretty cheaply/easily... As mentioned, they're also a lot nicer as a daily compared to an MX5 thanks to the torquey 4pot.

They're a genuinely rare car on the roads to with just circa 1,700 in the UK. Mk4 MX5's are possibly even 10x this number.

I'm waiting until they drop that little bit more to around £15k before I buy. From there I think they'll continue to drop very slowly but it'll be the perfect time to get a nice, unabused low miles example and one which isn't too old either!
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Integroo

4,997 posts

28 months

Wednesday 10th July
quotequote all
Characterful things, but far too expensive new.

Integroo

4,997 posts

28 months

Wednesday 10th July
quotequote all
retrosonic said:
so 1st owner probablly weighed it in for £17+k ....Ouch !
First owner probably paid £250 a month on a lease deal.

Integroo

4,997 posts

28 months

Wednesday 10th July
quotequote all
Luke. said:
Love ours and the lease deals at the time were silly cheap. We're paying just £140 a month. Can't think of anything better for the money.
Presumably not £140 amortised? Best I saw was £199 with a small deposit, for an auto only - manuals were more expensive.

Gary29

2,291 posts

42 months

Wednesday 10th July
quotequote all
Integroo said:
First owner probably paid £250 a month on a lease deal.
Genuinely, this is what I don't understand about lease deals?

Finance company pays Fiat £30000 for the car. Sells it to punter for £250/month (£3000 for the 12 months) + deposit (~5% = £1500?)

Car is now worth £19000, £11K less than original price after 12 months.

£11000 - 3000 - 1500 = £6500 shortfall.

Who pays the £6500 difference?

Forgive me if I'm being stupid, not intentional.

cerb4.5lee

11,838 posts

123 months

Wednesday 10th July
quotequote all
I'm torn with these because I prefer the Turbo engine in these to the N/A engine in the MX5, but this is one of the worst looking cars on the road for me. Whereas I really like the looks of the current MX5.

It doesn't surprise me one bit that they've been dropped and that they depreciate like a stone. A shame really because I did like the idea of them before they were first released.

Andrew-396pl

7 posts

9 months

Wednesday 10th July
quotequote all
I owned an original 124 Abarth spider.......wonderful thing.

This is just so ugly - how did the maker of such great designs - Panda - 500 - coupe - Barchetta - Fiat Dino - sign off this mutt?

I would of loved one if the design brief was decent - but i couldn't drive this.

Italian two seater sports car = looks / style

golfer19

1,242 posts

76 months

Wednesday 10th July
quotequote all
Gary29 said:
Integroo said:
First owner probably paid £250 a month on a lease deal.
Genuinely, this is what I don't understand about lease deals?

Finance company pays Fiat £30000 for the car. Sells it to punter for £250/month (£3000 for the 12 months) + deposit (~5% = £1500?)

Car is now worth £19000, £11K less than original price after 12 months.

£11000 - 3000 - 1500 = £6500 shortfall.

Who pays the £6500 difference?

Forgive me if I'm being stupid, not intentional.
The finance company would not be paying £30k.
They will be getting a very hefty discount.

Earthdweller

1,995 posts

69 months

Wednesday 10th July
quotequote all
retrosonic said:
so 1st owner probablly weighed it in for £17+k ....Ouch !
They were/are available for about £23k new on the road through the affinity scheme

Luke.

7,895 posts

193 months

Wednesday 10th July
quotequote all
Integroo said:
Luke. said:
Love ours and the lease deals at the time were silly cheap. We're paying just £140 a month. Can't think of anything better for the money.
Presumably not £140 amortised? Best I saw was £199 with a small deposit, for an auto only - manuals were more expensive.
No. I put £1900 down.

Demonix

94 posts

155 months

Wednesday 10th July
quotequote all
Do the BBR tuning kits fit the Abarth - am assuming the Spyder is so closely related to the MX 5 so it should be possible? - anyone able to confirm

Hifiman2007

3 posts

Wednesday 10th July
quotequote all
I have one. It may have a list of 30k but no one paid this. I managed a 7k price reduction. So owner may not lose what you expect. Dealer told me fiat had plenty of mark up on these. Brilliant car though

HorribleGit

14 posts

129 months

Wednesday 10th July
quotequote all
Neighbour has one, horrible exhaust note that ruins the car.

carinaman

13,641 posts

115 months

Wednesday 10th July
quotequote all
The colour mismatch of the front bumper reminds me of an Alfa Mito. I thought Porsche managed to colour match flexible plastic parts on the 928 and 944 in the 70s and 80s respectively. Waterbased paints make colour matching designed to flex plastic parts more difficult?

I wasn't aware of the tempting PCP pricing on these. While I like Fiats, I also like MX5s which seem purer and not aping some Mazda from the 60s, not obviously harvesting the back catalogue.

Edited by carinaman on Wednesday 10th July 16:19

kcalculates

26 posts

31 months

Wednesday 10th July
quotequote all
Demonix said:
Do the BBR tuning kits fit the Abarth - am assuming the Spyder is so closely related to the MX 5 so it should be possible? - anyone able to confirm
No, the engines/drivetrain used in the 124 are Fiat units.

carinaman

13,641 posts

115 months

Wednesday 10th July
quotequote all
Two 1.4 MAs with 15K or less on the Odos for £12K on AT.