The 124 Spider is the newest kid on the roadster block. Underneath it’s a Mazda MX-5 but on the outside it gets new styling from Fiat.
This is a good thing, because the Japanese are very good at mechanicals and the Italians are very good at making cars look pretty. If it were the other way around you might be forgiven for being wary, but here there’s little cause for concern.
Dynamic differences between this and the MX-5 are few and far between. The 124 is more about taking a leisurely drive along a coastal road than attacking your favourite back road, and is therefore a little softer on its springs.
Unlike the MX-5, there’s only one engine option here. It’s Fiat’s 1.4-litre MultiAir petrol engine, which makes 140bhp and is more than enough in a car so light – remarkably for a modern car, it tips the scales at a little over a tonne.
Fancy an affordable Italian roadster? We’ve looked at the three trim levels available to help make the choice even easier…
The smart choice for saving money – Classica
Go for the entry-level model and you won’t feel like you’re missing out on too much luxury. The black fabric seats are comfortable, while a leather steering wheel and gear knob add to the premium feel.
A three-inch screen plays host to a radio and has Bluetooth, USB and aux-in connectivity. There’s also air conditioning, keyless go and cruise control with speed limiter to make mile-munching even more effortless.
The smart-looking exterior gets 16-inch alloy wheels, electrically adjustable body-coloured door mirrors and a double exhaust pipe, while the LED rear lights look fantastic at night.
Prices start at £19,545 OTR for the Fiat 124 Spider Classica.
The smart choice for value – Lusso
The Lusso trim is next up. The interior gets leather-heated seats here and silver roll bar covers.
The infotainment system is also upgraded to a seven-inch touchscreen. Extra features include digital radio, Wi-Fi and a second USB port, as well as an integrated navigation system.
The air conditioning is upgraded to an automatic climate control system to help keep you comfortable on chillier days with the roof down. There’s also keyless entry, a rear parking camera and rear parking sensors.
On the outside, 17-inch wheels are fitted, while the double-exit exhaust pipe gets a chrome cover. Fog lights and a silver windscreen frame are also added.
The Fiat 124 Spider Lusso starts at £22,295 OTR.
The smart choice for technophiles – Lusso Plus
The top-of-the-range Lusso Plus trim level adds a little extra luxury that’ll keep technophiles happy.
The four-speaker system is replaced with a nine-speaker set-up from Bose, four of which reside in the seat headrests. This ensures that audio quality is top-notch even with the roof down.
The Lusso Plus also gets LED headlights and daytime running lights, which help light the road ahead with excellent clarity, while rain and dusk sensors allow the headlights to come on automatically when necessary.
For the Fiat 124 Spider Lusso Plus, prices start from £23,295 OTR.
After completing his university studies in English and Creative Writing in Cardiff, Jack is now a full time motoring writer at Blackball Media. His love of cars stems from his childhood years when he began to live and breathe all-things automotive.
October 7, 2016