The Fiat 500 has been a triumph for the manufacturer. Bursting with retro chic, well-equipped and a joy to drive, it has proved wildly popular throughout the UK and continental Europe. Now the manufacturer's partners at Abarth have ramped up the style and speed with a high-powered version of the celebrated supermini.
The new Abarth 595 and 595C is the natural heir of the original model launched in 2008. Performance, technology and iconic Italian style are the key factors of a very successful line-up. Available as a hatchback or convertible, the new Abarth 595 is offered with three trim levels: 595, 595 Turismo and 595 Competizione, and three power levels to satisfy the requirements of increasingly demanding and competent customers.
Many of the upgrades introduced are the result of experience gained with the development of the 695 Biposto, dubbed the "smallest supercar", which implements real racing thrills and technology on a street-legal car.
The distinctive yet affordable 595 version is the Abarth entry level model and offers all the standard equipment needed to ensure typical Scorpion enjoyment and driving pleasure. The 595 is the ideal base for drivers who want to tune their car over time and make it unique.
The 595 Competizione and 595 Turismo versions express other two distinctive souls of Abarth. The first, more "purist", model is designed for those who love performance and no-compromise sportiness. The second makes reference to the typical values of the Italian GTs in a compact size perfect for use in cities.
Engine and gearbox
One of the biggest innovations is the increased power of the 1.4 T-jet engine installed on the 595 and 595 Turismo versions. The first delivers 145 HP and 206 Nm of peak torque, while the second reaches 165 HP and 230 Nm. The latter is fitted with a Garrett turbine. On the other hand, the 595 Competizione with its 180 HP is the car for drivers who crave racing adrenaline in terms of both performance and technical features.
Accelerating from 0-62 mph in 6.7 seconds and then braking safely with the oversize Brembo braking system with four-piston fixed aluminium callipers will be a pleasure in the anatomical “Abarth Corsa by Sabelt” shell seats. The engine also achieves a specific power of 132 HP/litre as a result of the high-performance Record Monza exhaust with dual mode system.
As standard, all variants of the 1.4 T-jet engine are paired with a mechanical five-speed gearbox but they can be fitted with an Abarth robotised sequential gearbox with shift paddles.
Abarth mechanical limited-slip differential
The new Abarth 595 is the only car in its segment to fit a truly exclusive mechanical limited-slip differential, for outstanding performance. Available on demand, the Abarth mechanical limited-slip differential features on the 595 Competizione with manual transmission and derives directly from the experience acquired on the 695 Biposto.
The Abarth mechanical limited-slip differential exploits the full potential of the 595 Competizione to the utmost and improves traction in extreme conditions. The mechanical limited-slip differential ensures adequate torque transfer between the front wheels when either has less grip (a typical example is the different speed coming out of curves taken with high lateral load). This equipment allows the driver to close the line and eliminates understeer.
Abarth D.A.M. is contained in the new Performance Pack – available on the new Abarth 595 Competizione with manual gearbox only – which includes 17” Supersport rims and Sabelt leather/Alcantara® seats with carbon shell, carved aluminium 595 badge and the red, white or glossy black customisation pack to personalise the look of the car.
Brakes, suspension and Sport button
Standard on 595 Turismo and 595 Competizione are the Koni FSD (Frequency Selective Damping) rear shock absorbers that optimise the driving experience and safety by improving road-hold, handling and stability. And now, the same shocks are fitted as standard on 595 Competizione on the front suspension, with a considerable increase in dynamic performance.
Also on the top-of-the-range version is the Brembo braking system with four-piston aluminium monoblock fixed callipers – standard red or optionally black or yellow – combined with 305 mm ventilated and perforated discs. The standard callipers are instead black on the 595 Turismo, with red or yellow offered as alternatives.
Finally, the new Abarth 595 also fits a Sport button to change different parameters of the car: from maximum torque output to power steering calibration to get a more direct and less invasive feel. Furthermore, the system adjusts the accelerator pedal calibration to guarantee prompter response and the TFT instrument panel switches to racing configuration, in perfect Abarth style.
On the outside, the new Abarth 595 has many new features which improve performance. The front end, for example, has been redesigned and now has an oversized air intake: this improves heat management in the engine compartment and increases cooling capacity by 18%.
Abarth engineers also worked on the rear bumper creating a more pronounced diffuser. Specific bumper inserts have also been created for each trim level. They are matte black for the 595, in matching body colour on the 595 Turismo and with the Anthracite grey finish on the 595 Competizione.
The new 17’’ Granturismo rims (standard on 595 Turismo) are 7% lighter and have over 50% more ventilating surface to the benefit of heat dissipation, and enhanced and more consistent braking system performance as a consequence. The distinctive features of the new Abarth 595 include new satin chrome trim on the 595 and Turismo versions, new mirror caps (satin chrome on 595 Turismo, matching body colour on 595 and Anthracite grey on 595 Competizione) and the side stripes (standard on 595 Competizione), now wider and longer to give greater emphasis to the Abarth brand.
Available in 15 body colours - including pastel, metallic and tri-coat paints and five bi-colour liveries - the exciting colour palette of the new Abarth 595 includes besides standard Circuit Grey the exclusive Modena Yellow, until now only available on the 695 Biposto Record, the sporty and bright new Abarth Red pastel and the new tri-coat Ghaccio White. Making their début are the three new two-colour combos: Scorpione Black/Podio Blue and Scorpione Black/Record Grey and Circuit Grey/Abarth Red.
Finally, three packs for customising the appearance of the car are available on demand with Abarth side sticker, mirror caps and front and rear bumper inserts in three colours: white, black or red.
The new Abarth 595 is completely new on the inside, too. New technical materials, like Alcantara® and carbon fibre cleverly reassert the sporty character of the model. Furthermore, new upholstery is available on the entire range.
In particular, the 595 version offers specific Abarth fabric seats characterised by extraordinary lateral support. The 595 Turismo version comes with black, natural or red leather seats, while standard on the 595 Competizione are the Corsa by Sabelt seats, among the best supporting seats available.
Furthermore, the new flat bottom steering wheel with centre detailing was designed to ensure effective sporty driving. In more detail, the standard steering wheel for the Competizione version is made of technical materials, such as carbon fibre and Alcantara®. The dashboard fascia, which has always been one of the most iconic features of the 595, is specifically characterised for each version: matching body colour on 595, matte grey on 595 Turismo and tar cold grey on 595 Competizione.
The innovations continue with a brand new sports instrument panel, which improves readability, especially with the new graphics that characterise the Sport mode. Moreover, the boost gauge lighting is white so as to make reading easier and more immediate.
All versions are equipped with Uconnect™ 5-inch DAB Radio with touchscreen and Uconnect Live services as standard equipment (also with built-in navigator on request). Uconnect™ 7” HD, a fast platform complete with high-def screen, navigation and DAB digital radio, also appears for the first time on the range. The Uconnect 7” HD system comes with high-def screen and Abarth Telemetry for gauging driving performance on preloaded circuits to study driving style and improve it.
It is also customisable, offering the possibility to record new tracks and store them for later retrieval to compare performance. With the preloaded points of interest (Officine Abarth and other significant places for the brand) each owner can now "collect" special badges. Results and progress can naturally be shared on the social pages.
Apple CarPlay and Google Android Auto (available September) – considered the best smartphone mirroring solutions for Apple iOS and Android – will become available upon request on Uconnect 7". This will allow quick and easy access to all the functions and contents of the smartphone on the touchscreen of the new Abarth 595s.
Finally, the refined and powerful BeatsAudio™ system with seven speakers is making its appearance on the new Abarth 595. It will certainly win over even the most demanding music lovers.
Contact our Abarth specialist Jon Crook today on 01536 268991 to arrange a test drive.