Abarth 595 Scorpioneoro is a limited edition gem!

Abarth 595 Scorpioneoro is a limited edition gem!

Iconic is a very overused word in many arenas but particularly in regard to cars. However, there are a few cars that can genuinely claim to be iconic and the Fiat 500 is certainly one of them. In its modern incarnation, like BMW’s MINI, it is heritage reborn and continues to be a huge success for Fiat.

It is hard to believe it has been around since 2008 and in Abarth form is a particularly fun drive. It’s not especially fast but really emphasises that cars don’t need to be fast to be fun.

Priced from €20,488 (£17,760) the Abarth 595 line-up is all powered by a 1.4-litre turbocharged petrol engine driving the front wheels through either a manual or CVT automatic gearbox. There’s a firm but still comfortable ride with the benefit of confident cornering across more twisting roads. The engine is in various states of tune from 145 hp to 180 hp.

The Abarths come in five trim levels with each having distinctive paint finishes and badging depending on the particular edition. There are hatchback and cabio models along with a limited edition Scorpioneoro which was my test model. The limited edition run is just 2,000 and it certainly looks distinctive with black paintwork, gold detailing wheels.

Priced at €25,777 (£22,345) the 165 hp Scorpioneoro offers standard fare such as navigation, Bluetooth, climate, power mirrors, automatic lights, rear parking sensors, special Scorpioneoro carpet floor mats and headrest stitching plus a numbered plaque.

Where the 595 shows its age is on items such as seating which offers little adjustment, a steering wheel only adjustable for height not reach and a design that means the interior is cosy. What seat height adjustment there is comes via a lever adjacent the handbrake – not ideal – because the door side of the seats are so close it is not possible to fit it on that side. That said this is a car that was originally launched back in 2008.

Apart from looking the part the Abarth sounds gorgeous at tickover, not in a broken exhaust kind of way but there’s a lovely burble from the exhaust and once on the road pushing the revs the sounds continue to impress. It has such character compared to many modern cars and also broad appeal. My young supermarket delivery chap went into verbal overdrive when he saw it. This was one I was VERY sorry to hand back.

Facts at a Glance

  • Model: Abarth 595 Scorpioneoro
  • Engine: 1.4 T-Jet turbocharged 4-cylinder petrol developing 165 hp
  • Gears: 5-speed manual
  • Performance: 0-100 kph (62 mph) Petrol 7.3 secs
  • Maximum Speed: Petrol 217 kph (135 mph)
  • Economy: Petrol 7.5 l/100km (37.7 mpg) WLTP
  • Emissions: 167 g/km WLTP

Model tested was UK-specification and equipment levels and prices may vary in other markets.

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Written by

Mark Reynolds