It is not even on sale in Britain or Ireland yet, but the eagerly-awaited 500 Abarth is already picking up top industry awards.
The 135bhp turbocharged supermini has just roared off with Top Gear magazine’s Best Hot Hatch prize.
Due in Ireland in the first half of next year, the potent 500 Abarth has already stirred up excitement among British and Irish customers with 200 examples of the car, which were set aside for sale exclusively via the internet, having been snapped up, three months ahead of plan.
Described by Top Gear as frisky and fun and an irresistible piece of Italian tailoring, the 500 Abarth is praised by the magazine’s judges for its retro styling, sports looks, turbocharged acceleration, grip, and handling.
There has already been considerable success throughout Europe with the Grande Punto Abarth and endorsements from important and influential media such as Top Gear magazine are further proof that Abarth are doing things absolutely right with their exciting new products.
Powered by a 1.4-litre 16-valve turbocharged engine similar to the one in the Punto Grande Abarth, the 500 Abarth delivers a maximum 135bhp at 5500rpm and has a peak torque of 206Nm (15 lb ft ) at 3000rpm, when sport mode is deployed.
Built to Euro 5 environmental standards, the 500 Abarth returns 5.4l/100km on the combined cycle and has CO2 emissions of just 155g/km.