Due to Fiat's aspirations of going worldwide, the new 500 performance hatchback from Abarth might be headed to the United States.
Abarth has announced that they are producing a new hot hatch, at least in Europe, just one week after the Fiat 500e was unveiled in the United States at the 2022 LA Auto Show. We're here to disappoint you, at least temporarily, if any of you were hoped that the Abarth 500 manufactured from 2008 to 2019 will be released again. It's not disappointing that this brand-new Abarth all-electric hatchback gets a significant power boost to go along with that outrageous paint job, and given Fiat's new business strategies, it may also be released in the United States soon.
According to the specs, the new Fiat 500e will be a highly pricey but also extremely entertaining little hatchback for cruising about town. The chassis is itself bigger and longer than the previous 500, and because the battery pack is a part of the floor, all of its weight is distributed relatively low. This means that even though it is heavier, the conventional 500e will move considerably more quickly because to how stable it is, offering faster entry and exit speeds into and out of corners and a far more sensitive chassis than its ICE cousin.
That is all, though, until Abarth gets its hands on it and actually turns it into the hot hatch that the company is most renowned for. First, it shares the same 42 kWh battery pack with the standard 500e, but the Abarth 500e increases its power output from the 500e's around 117 hp to approximately 152 hp. With that bump, the time from 0 to 62 mph is reduced from 9.0 seconds to 7.0 seconds, which is a significant improvement. That also implies that the Abarth 500e is nearly a second quicker than the ICE version.
The good news is that the Abarth has a true pedestrian mode called Turismo if you don't want to drive erratically all the time. This results in smooth acceleration and effective driving while reducing the power to just 134 hp, which is still more than the standard 500e. Both modes allow for one-pedal driving with the same sense of deceleration as a manual gearbox car, except without the clutch and downshifting. The next mode up is Scorpion Street, which increases motor performance and maximises regenerative braking. The Abarth 500e performs best in the full-throttle, all-out Scorpion track mode, though.
The Abarth 500e will produce noise you are familiar with and are unfamiliar with when it comes to your driving experience, which is fantastic news for those who enjoy noise. However, the concept is consistent with Fiat's history of giving its tuned cars a distinctive sound from the stock Fiats on which they are based.
The Key On-Off mechanism is used in their first sound prank. Every time you switch the Abarth 500e on or off, a guitar sound may be heard within the cabin. The Acoustic Vehicle Alert System (AVAS), which is exclusive to the Abarth 500e and any other EV on the road, plays a "jingle" outside. When you initially go over 12, you'll hear a guitar being played back inside.
The Abarth 500e has a Sound Generator, emulating its larger American counterpart. As you move around in the Abarth 500e, this mimics the recognisable sound of the ICE engine from the Abarth 500. It is provided as an alternative to the 500e's default sound, which includes the AVAS sound. The Sound Generator may really be turned off (or back on when you want it) while you're at a stop if you prefer a silent electric vehicle ride. The Borla Active Sound system we saw at the 2022 SEMA Show sounds quite similar to this as well, but it appears that Abarth's version won't attempt to vibrate the car with the sound at the same time.
Of course, this hotter 500e can't simply look like every other 500e on the road because it's an Abarth. The front bumper has a considerably sportier appearance, and to mirror the treatment given to the rear diffuser inserts, the front dam on the valence is painted white. The normal 500e's body colour mirror covers are replaced with titanium grey equivalents, and the Abarth 500e receives a special set of wheels and a new, "electrified" Abarth scorpion insignia. Finally, the cabriolet has a sharper spoiler and uses a black fabric to conceal your head when necessary, whereas the hardtop hatchback comes with a rear privacy glass. You may find all the Abarth information you need within.
Owners will sit in more athletic versions of the 500e's seats, now upholstered in Alcantara and engraved with the Abarth scorpion insignia utilising acid green stitching on the integrated headrests. The seats also have heating. The driver's seat is also height-adjustable, while the back seats are a bench with a 50/50 split.
The word "Abarth" is carved on the lower part of the steering wheel, which is made of leather and Alcantara and has the new scorpion motif in Acid Green on the airbag cover. The materials are brought together with an Acid Green contrasting stitching and a Poison Blue centred ring at the 12 o'clock position. While the door cards and central console are made of leather, the dashboard insert is made of Alcantara with an embossed design.
Only 1,949 of the Scorpionissima launch editions, which refers to the year the Abarth brand was founded, will be produced for the new Abarth 500e in Europe. The Scorpionissima will be offered in Poison Blue or Acid Green, depending on whether you want a hatchback or a cabriolet.
The launch edition Abarth 500e is the only one with the side graphics along the lower body sides and the 18-inch diamond-cut Titanium Gray wheels. Steel pedals, an engraved kick plate bearing the Abarth insignia, a Titanium Gray dashboard ring, and steel door sill plates bearing the word "Abarth" are all included inside.
Additionally, the Scorpionissima has a 10.25-inch Uconnect Radio with navigation and Performance Pages, a feature that lets drivers monitor their performance. Additionally compatible with wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, the Uconnect Radio. However, the seven-inch digital cluster, which uses Poison Blue and Acid Green colouring featured throughout the Abarth 500e's interior, is the screen that the driver will primarily focus on. It gives all the driving information they will need.
The new Abarth also includes a comprehensive automatic driver assistance system (ADAS) suite, which includes traffic sign information, autonomous emergency braking, auto-dimming mirrors, a wireless device charging, a 360-degree vision system, and JBL premium music.
Only European customers may currently purchase the Abarth 500e and the Scorpionissima Edition online utilising the new system, which went live on November 22. This enables customers to have a paperless, online purchasing experience, which, according to Fiat, is a key component of its goal of "simplicity and consumer happiness."
Only participants in Abarth's "Performance Creators" programme are eligible for the one-month pre-booking period for the Scorpionissima Edition. By influencing their ideas about what these upcoming cars should look like, these 160,000 Abarth enthusiasts contributed to the creation of the Abarth 500e and other future Abarths.
Although the Abarth 500e and the Scorpionissima Edition are now exclusively available in Europe, there is yet hope. The press statement makes clues about the Abarth 500e's international goals, thus it appears that both the Abarth 500e and the regular Fiat 500e will be imported to the US. It's unclear when that will occur; the conventional 500e isn't anticipated to go on sale until early 2024.