A newcomer to Fiat‘s 500 family, the 2013 Fiat 500 Turbo will occupy the middle space between the standard 500 and the top-tier Abarth. Features include a turbocharged 1.4-liter four-cylinder engine, sport-tuned suspension, larger brakes and a muscular body kit. While the U.S.-market Abarth puts out 160 horsepower and 170 lb-ft of torque, the 500 Turbo is good for 135 horsepower and 150 lb-ft of torque — essentially the same as the non-Essesse version of the Euro Abarth. A five-speed manual gearbox borrowed from the Abarth drives the front wheels, and the driveline is bolstered by larger CV joints, while larger-diameter half-shafts reduce the effects of torque steer. There are also stiffer spring rates, shock tuning and steering calibration, all borrowed from the 500 Sport. The brakes, meanwhile, have upgraded sportier pads, and the front rotors are upsized by one inch in diameter. The car rolls on 16-inch aluminum wheels, identical to the 500 Sport’s, modified with black painted inserts in between the spokes. In terms of styling the 500 Turbo gets a unique aero kit and gloss black headlamps. Inside, one finds sport seats, leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, plus optional heated leather seats. Sound comes courtesy of Chrysler Group’s Beats by Dr. Dre audio system.
The 2013 FIAT 500 Turbo arrives this fall with a manufacturer’s suggested retail price of $19,500 excluding $700 destination charge.