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Friday, August 17, 2012

The New 2013 Fiat 500 Turbo is Finally Here!

Fiat 500 Turbo

The highly anticipated 2013 Fiat 500T will be making its debut today during the Concorso Italiano automobile show held in Monterey, California. Called the Fiat 500 Turbo, the new car is based on the Fiat 500 Sport but uses a turbocharged version of the Sport's 1.4L MultiAir engine and a beefed up driveline, first seen on the Fiat 500 Abarth.

Fiat 500 Turbo

The Facts
The twin intercooled 1.4-liter MultiAir® Turbo engine puts out 135 horsepower and 150 lb.-ft. of torque, up from the 101 horsepower and 98 lb.-ft of torque the regular 500’s naturally aspirated 1.4-liter MultiAir engine produced. This 34 percent gain of power and 53 percent gain in torque go through an upgraded driveline utilizing the heavy duty C510 5 speed transmission and features equal length driveshafts. To eliminate torque steer, the driveshaft's diameter were increased 23 percent (28.1 mm vs. 22.8 mm) compared with Fiat 500 half shafts. An interesting fact is the 1972 Lancia Beta pioneered the use equal length driveshafts in a transverse engined, front wheel drive application and it was latter adapted for use on the 1978 Fiat Ritmo / Strada.

Fiat 500 Turbo

To cope with the substantial increase in power, larger constant velocity (CV) joints are also used and offer 53 percent greater torsional strength than the standard Fiat 500's (2600 N•m vs. 1700 N•m in the Fiat 500).

Fuel economy is said to be 34 MPG on the highway.

Fiat 500 Turbo rear bumper

A dual ringed , single exhaust tip highlights a performance tuned exhaust, specifically engineered for the 500 Turbo. It differs from the 500 Sport's and the unmuffled 500 Abarth's.

Brakes in the Fiat 500 Turbo are the same as the 500 Abarth's and are upgraded to 11.1 inch front discs, up 1 inch over the 500 Sport's.

The Fiat 500 Turbo inherits the uprated suspension calibrations used in the Fiat 500 Sport, meaning the springs and dampers are more aggressive than in the 500 Pop and Lounge models, but still offer a comfortable ride. This is in keeping with the 500 Turbo's role of being a daily driver but with a healthy dose of attitude.

Tim Kuniskis, Head of Fiat Brand North America says:
“We listened to our customers. The new Fiat 500 Turbo is the answer to all the fans that loved the style of our Cinquecento but wanted more power and performance for their daily drive. With 135 horsepower and 150 lb.-ft. of torque, the Fiat 500 Turbo hits the sweet spot between the regular Cinquecento and the high-performance Fiat 500 Abarth. The Fiat 500 Turbo balances and blends the best Italian flavors that our portfolio has to offer, becoming the perfect canvas for customization.”

Fiat 500 Turbo

The front fascia from the Fiat 500 Abarth will be recognized, but with the Fiat logo added. The rear fascia is also reminiscent of the 500 Abarth's, but with a single exhaust outlet and  different diffuser styling.  Headlights, turn signals and taillights with  black bezels replace chromed units from the normal  Fiat 500.  Look to see them available as an accessory later this year.

Bold sideskirts are also borrowed from the 500 Abarth and replace the smaller ones that are standard on the 500 Sport. Wheels are 16x6.5 aluminum alloys with black painted pockets and wear  195/45R16XL low profile tires.

Exterior colors for the 2013 Fiat 500 Turbo include Argento (silver), Bianco (white), Grigio (gray), Nero (black), Rame (copper), Rosso (red) and all-new Verde Azzurro (green & blue.)

Fiat 500 Turbo with Beats Audio

Inside, the new Fiat 500 Turbo features sport-styled seating, sport-designed leather-wrapped shift knob and steering wheel accented with Argento (silver) stitching, and a Grigio/Nero (gray/black)seating and interior environment. For an even more upscale look, heated leather seating in Nero/Nero (black/black) or vivid Rosso/Nero (red/black) is available.

New Beats by Dr. Dre audio system
New for 2013, the segment-exclusive – and first-time-ever in a small car and FIAT automobile – Beats by Dr. Dre audio system offers passengers of the Fiat 500 Turbo a high-definition music experience the way the artist intended. The available Beats Audio studio-quality sound system includes six premium speakers, an 8-inch dual-voice coil (DVC) subwoofer with trunk-mounted enclosure and eight-channel 368-watt amplifier with Beats Audio digital sound processing (DSP) algorithm.

The 2013 Fiat 500 Turbo arrives to FIAT Studios this fall with a Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of $19,500 excluding $700 destination charge.

Join the discussion on the Fiat 500 USA Forum. Get the answers to your questions about the new Fiat 500 Turbo.


Anonymous said...

What fuel grade does it require?

John G. said...

Very nice report, Chris.

The car looks great.

Me, I am waiting for the Abarth convertible. said...

The MultiAir turbo can use regular gas. Premium is not required but recommended for maximum performance.

x19Chris said...

I wonder if the Abarth's optional wheel package will be available on the 500 Turbo. I'm just not digging the standard Sport model's wheels. It needs the 17" wheels to set it off.

Anonymous said...

I hope they bring the esseesse kit to north america so everyone who has a 500T can make it a "500 Abarth".
Sneaky fiat calling it a 500T, its just a euro spec 500 abarth, you can't fool us fanboys!
Or just put the abarth ecu in and give everyone the extra 40hp and 20tq back said...

One thing you need to remember is that this is not the equivalent to the Euro Abarth or a detuned US Abarth. This uses the nimble Sport's chassis - which is comfortable, has great handling but not as "hard core" as the Abarth's - and gives it a healthy dose of power. This car promises to be a blast to drive, yet will be relaxing, quiet and comfy when you want it to be.

Anonymous said...

The Standard Abarth, but in 16" would work for me just fine if ever an option....They are nice wheels for sure...sells the car. When is the 500T coming to market, next spring or?

Anonymous said...

Hope a auto trans is available. Us San Fran drivers need it.