It’s been a while since Abarth introduced a new model, but the wait was well worth it. The company has unveiled a prototype called 124 Rally that’s both a homage to the original Abarth-tuned 124 Spider, and a preview of an upcoming race car.
Shown as a close-to-production concept during the Geneva Auto Show, the 124 Rally is an evolution of the Abarth 124 Spider, which is a sportier version of the Mazda Miata-based Fiat 124 Spider. Still with us? In its transition from a street-legal model to a rally car it receives four LED fog lights up front, deeper bumpers on both ends, and eight-spoke alloy wheels. The cloth soft top has been replaced with a composite hard top, and the Rally adopts a heritage-laced two-tone red and yellow paint job.
While the Abarth 124 Spider is powered by a Fiat-sourced 1.4-liter turbo four, the Rally model is upgraded with a 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine that’s both turbocharged and direct-injected. It sends about 300 horsepower — 130 more than the Euro-spec Abarth 124 Spider — to the rear wheels via a six-speed sequential gearbox and a mechanical limited-slip differential. Performance specifications haven’t been published yet, and it’s difficult to provide an estimate because we don’t know how much the Rally weighs. Similarly, Abarth is tight-lipped about the engine’s origins.
The Abarth 124 Rally will go on sale in the coming months. It’s built to the FIA’s R-GT specifications, and it’s scheduled to make its competition debut in 2017.