2013 Fiat 500c Abarth Cabrio Preview

Jeff Youngs | Dec 11, 2012
FAST FACTS
  • Power roll-top convertible roof
  • Turbocharged, 160-horsepower engine
  • Sport-tuned suspension, steering and exhaust
  • Larger wheels, tires and brakes
  • Three-mode stability control system
  • Optional 17-inch forged aluminum wheels
  • Optional performance tires
  • Optional premium sound system
  • Optional portable navigation system
  • Standard 1-day driving school instruction

Introduction

The 2013 Fiat 500c Abarth Cabrio is a performance-tuned version of the Fiat 500c convertible. The car is equipped with a power roll-top convertible roof that slides between the outer roof rails. It can be opened as a sunroof, a panoramic sunroof, or completely (with the top stacked above the trunk). Fiat says the top is operable at speeds up to 60 mph.

Exterior Features

In creating the new Fiat 500c Abarth Cabrio, designers applied the same redesigned front end, the same new rear bumper, the same dual exhaust outlets, the same wheels, the same red-painted brake calipers, the same graphics, and the same color combinations that are offered on the standard 500 Abarth model. The difference is the 500c Abarth Cabrio's convertible roof, and because it is a roll-top design that retains the outer roof rails, Fiat says the new Abarth Cabrio retains more of its structural rigidity than it would if a traditional convertible top design were employed. It also includes side curtain air bags that are often eliminated in traditional convertibles.

Interior Features

Inside, the 2013 Fiat 500c Abarth Cabrio is equipped with one-piece performance seats for the front-seat occupants, providing a 5-point racing harness pass-through in the seatbacks. The dashboard is equipped with a 160-mph speedometer, turbo boost gauge, flat-bottom leather-wrapped steering wheel, and leather on the gauge hood and shift knob. Additional standard equipment includes aluminum pedals, air conditioning, Bluetooth hands-free connectivity, and an Alpine-brand stereo with an iPod connection and a USB port.

Optional Features

Fiat offers an optional Beats by Dr. Dre premium sound system for the 2013 500c Abarth Cabrio, along with satellite radio, a portable navigation system, automatic climate control system, leather seats, heated front seats, rear park-assist sensors, and a wind-stop to reduce cabin buffeting. Buyers can also upgrade to a performance-oriented wheel-and-tire combination.

Under the Hood

A turbocharged, 1.4-liter 4-cylinder engine is standard for the 2013 Fiat 500c Abarth Cabrio, generating 160 horsepower at 5,500 rpm and 170 lb.-ft. of torque between 2,500 and 4,000 rpm.

A 5-speed manual gearbox is the only transmission offered, and it is strengthened for duty in the Abarth. To quell torque steer, the 500c Abarth Cabrio is equipped with Torque Transfer Control and equal-length drivetrain half-shafts.

Additional hardware changes include a performance-tuned suspension, performance-tuned electric steering, performance exhaust system, and performance brakes. A three-mode traction and stability control system help to ensure that the 500c Abarth Cabrio is "track-ready," according to Fiat.

The standard wheel-and-tire combination wraps P195/45R16 all-season performance tires around 16-inch aluminum wheels. Optionally, the 500c Abarth Cabrio can be upgraded with 17-inch forged aluminum wheels with 205/40 summer performance tires.

To help 500c Abarth Cabrio buyers exploit the car's performance potential, 1 free day of instruction at the Abarth Driving Experience School is included in the purchase price.

Safety

The new Fiat 500c Abarth Cabrio is equipped with 6 air bags, including side-impact curtain air bags for the front and rear seats. A blind-spot mirror is installed on the driver's side of the car, and the Abarth Cabrio is equipped with 4-wheel ventilated disc anti-lock brakes with brake assist, a 3-stage traction and stability control system, and a hill-start assist system. Rear park-assist sensors are optional for the 500c Cabrio.

In crash tests conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), the 2013 Fiat 500 was named a "Top Safety Pick." However, the IIHS tested the standard 500 model, not the 500c, which could differ in terms of crash performance due to its modified roof structure. As this preview is written, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has not crash tested the 2013 Fiat 500c.

2013 Fiat 500c Summary, Photos & Specs
2012 Fiat 500 Ratings
Fiat Car Ratings

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