Used 2018 FIAT 124 Spider Abarth

Pros & Cons

  • Nimble, lively handling
  • Excellent feel from brakes and steering
  • Fast and easy-to-use convertible top
  • Abarth trim's sporty experience punches above its weight class
  • Frustrating, underperforming automatic transmission
  • Cramped interior and limited cargo space
  • Loud, rough ride, especially on freeways
  • Problematic seating adjustments for taller drivers
Other years
2018
FIAT 124 Spider for Sale
2018
List Price Estimate
$15,564 - $17,411

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Used 2018 FIAT 124 Spider Abarth for Sale

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Which 124 Spider does Edmunds recommend?

The Abarth is truly the standout of the 124 lineup (especially with the optional Brembo brakes), dramatically improving handling for a moderate price increase over the midtier Lusso. However, for buyers who aren't interested in canyon carving or who prefer a slightly more forgiving ride, the Classica trim with the Technology Collection package should cover most of the bases, and the extra tire sidewall on the smaller wheels will help with ride quality. In either case, we highly recommend the manual transmission since the automatic is frustratingly ill-matched to the small engine.

Edmunds' Expert Review

Overall rating

6.4 / 10

When Fiat decided to revive its famous 124 Spider nameplate last year, the company chose a partner known for making great modern roadsters: Mazda. Indeed, much of the 124 Spider's underlying structure comes courtesy of the Mazda MX-5 Miata. But the 124 is more than just a Mazda MX-5 in a costume. Fiat uses its own engine, transmission and suspension tuning, which in turn give the 124 Spider a distinct character all its own.

Like the Miata, the 124's diminutive figure is both part of its appeal and the cause of many of its shortcomings. Similarly, the small, turbocharged engine is likewise a distinctive trait with its own appeals and pitfalls: It's punchy and eager high in the rev range, but it's distinctly underpowered at low to medium rpm.

The Lusso and Classica express these traits very differently from the hot Abarth. The former two are softer, and in some ways more relaxed, while the latter pairs exceptional handling with a ride that borders on harsh. Knowing what you want from the 124 Spider is important in choosing the right trim.

Other convertibles on the market ask for far fewer compromises. The Ford Mustang and Chevrolet Camaro convertibles offer more interior space, more usable trunks and back seats (small as they are), and they are available with significantly more power. The Mini Cooper convertible presents small-car aesthetics and is easier to drive while asking for fewer sacrifices than the 124. Buyers looking at the Abarth might consider the Toyota 86 and Ford Fiesta ST for driving enjoyment. Then there's the Mazda Miata, which has been the best distillation of the small-roadster ethos for almost 30 years.

None of these competitors, however, offer quite the same experience as the Fiat — especially the Abarth. The right buyer, one who knows what they're in for, might decide that there's simply no substitute for the 124.

2018 FIAT 124 Spider models

The 2018 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth is powered by a turbocharged 1.4-liter four-cylinder engine that makes 164 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque. Power goes to the rear wheels through either a standard six-speed manual transmission or an optional six-speed automatic.

Standard equipment includes 17-inch wheels, air-conditioning, a height-adjustable driver seat, cruise control, a manual tilt-adjustable steering wheel, a performance-tuned suspension, a limited-slip differential, selectable drive modes, automatic climate control, leather and microfiber-trimmed seats, a 7-inch screen, a rearview camera, voice controls, streaming music app integration, satellite radio, GPS capability (GPS navigation is a separate dealer add-on), and a four-speaker stereo system with a 3-inch display screen and two USB ports.

The Comfort and Convenience Group includes heated auto-dimming mirrors, rear parking sensors, a security alarm, universal garage door opener, blind-spot monitoring, and rear cross-traffic alert. Opting for the Navigation and Sound Group adds navigation and a nine-speaker Bose stereo system. The Visibility Group adds turn-adaptive LED headlights and headlight washers.

Brembo brakes and a hand-painted racing stripe are exclusive options for the Abarth.

Trim tested

Each vehicle typically comes in multiple versions that are fundamentally similar. The ratings in this review are based on our full test of the 2017 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth (turbo 1.4L inline-4 | 6-speed manual | RWD).

NOTE: Since this test was conducted, the current 124 Spider Abarth has received some revisions to the distribution of options in its packages. Our findings remain applicable to this year's 124 Spider Abarth.

Driving

7.0
This convertible is a delight on winding roads, where its small size and light weight come together with excellent handling, an easy-shifting gearbox and communicative steering to make for a distinctive driving experience. The small engine is less thrilling in day-to-day driving, however.

Acceleration

7.0
The tiny motor is lively and feels strong high in the rev range, but doesn't make much power down low. You'll be caught flat-footed if you're not paying attention. In Sport mode the throttle response is delightfully sharp. Our 7-second time to 60 mph shows it's acceptably quick but no muscle car.

Braking

8.0
The optional Brembo brakes are worth it for their feel alone. The pedal is firm and communicative; the braking force is easy to modulate. Hard stops bring on ABS early, but the car stays straight and stable. Our measured 111-foot panic-stop distance from 60 mph is unexceptional for a sports car.

Steering

8.5
The steering is quick and very precise and offers useful road feel. Weighting is lighter than many sports cars, but good for something so small and maneuverable. On the downside, the Abarth gets darty at freeway speeds.

Handling

7.0
This is a poised little car that's a blast to put through twists and turns. It stays flat, taking a set almost immediately and changes directions without hesitation. Traction control isn't intrusive, and with it turned off, the car is communicative about its limits and recovers smartly.

Drivability

6.0
The manual transmission's shifter is light and accurate. Pedal placement and clutch feel are good, with clear engagement that makes smooth shifts easy. Unfortunately, the small engine bogs down readily, so quick starts can be difficult to manage smoothly.

Comfort

6.5
Comfort isn't the 124 Abarth's strength. The cramped confines and tight seats won't fit everyone, the cabin is noisy with the top up, and the ride is tuned for handling, not comfort. Fortunately the climate control is up to the task of regulating the 124's interior, even on hot days.

Seat comfort

6.0
These seats are quite narrow. For larger drivers, the bolsters are prominent enough to be uncomfortable, but they're not big enough to effectively hold you in place. There's no lumbar support to speak of, and the headrests with integrated speakers are uncomfortably hard.

Ride comfort

6.5
The Abarth's handling comes at the cost of compliance; the ride borders on harsh. It's more forgiving than the ride some high-performance cars, but expect to feel every imperfection and be jarred by larger bumps. Stretches of uneven freeway can start to feel like an endurance test.

Noise & vibration

6.0
Wind noise with the top down is well-controlled below 50 mph. With the top up, engine noise is almost always intrusive. It's fun during spirited driving, but it never goes away. There's engine drone at freeway speeds, but at least it helps mask the high level of wind and tire noise.

Climate control

7.0
The knob controls are straightforward, and make switching between automatic and manual modes easy, though temperature selection isn't really graduated. The system can combat even high heat but works hard to do it. Having only three vents can add frustration to driving with a passenger on hot days.

Interior

6.5
Some buyers will value the 124's diminutive stature, but there's no getting around the fact that being such a small car forces compromises in seat adjustability and ingress/egress. Being a convertible, it also has some visibility issues, but the manual top is exceptionally easy to use.

Ease of use

7.5
This car's small size brings all of the controls within easy reach. Drivers with long arms will find the infotainment control knob's placement awkward, especially when drinks are in the removable cupholders. Its few controls are clearly marked and easy to understand.

Getting in/getting out

6.5
The door is long enough, but the tall, wide sill and low roof with the top up create some problems. Taller drivers and passengers will just about fold themselves in half to get in or out. The experience is about average for such a low-slung convertible sports car.

Driving position

6.5
The seatback must be upright for the seat to slide fully aft, so tall drivers must choose between legroom or reclining. Beyond that frustration, the driving position is appropriate, with the seat set low in the car. More adjustments might be nice, but there's no room for them in the cramped space.

Roominess

5.0
The 124 is tiny, and it feels tiny on the inside. Not much lateral leg space or elbow and shoulder room. The low and thick windscreen frame adds to the claustrophobic feeling, even with the top down. The transmission tunnel takes up passenger-side floor space, making for a cramped experience.

Visibility

7.0
Forward visibility is good, and rearview mirror visibility is better than average for this type of car thanks to the low, sloping rear deck. Rear three-quarter visibility is laughably bad with the top up, and the side mirrors are quite small, so blind-spot monitoring is a helpful extra.

Quality

7.0
There's a mishmash of Mazda and Fiat bits in the cabin, so it doesn't feel all that cohesive. The sense of quality is a bit hit-or-miss: Soft-touch surfaces mix with flimsy-feeling plastics, and some pieces (notably in our tester, the rearview mirror) felt looser than we'd like.

Convertible top

8.0
The manual top is easy and straightforward to operate. It can be opened and closed very quickly, and it requires only mild contortions to reach. Sound insulation is minimal. Taller drivers should exercise caution; if they lean too far outboard, they'll find their skulls in the path of the frame.

Utility

5.0
You can't expect much utility from a tiny, two-seat convertible, and the 124 certainly doesn't deliver much. A weekend trip for two is about the most this car can handle. Other convertibles might offer more practicality, but that typically comes at the cost of size, weight and nimbleness.

Small-item storage

5.0
The tiny armrest box is just enough for a wallet and keys, and there's a cubby for a phone in the center console. The "glovebox" behind and between the seats, while big enough for a purse, is difficult to access, and it's blocked if you're keeping something in the removable cupholders.

Cargo space

5.0
The trunk is minuscule, with a small opening that's flat in the rear deck. Fortunately, the car is low to the ground, which keeps the liftover height from feeling overly problematic. Two soft overnight bags will fit, but don't plan on packing for much more than a weekend.

Technology

7.0
The 124's infotainment system — borrowed from Mazda — is an easy-to-use unit with a good knob-based interface. It offers the features you expect, with the biggest omission being Android Auto and Apple CarPlay compatibility. Driver aids are optional, and there are only a few.

Audio & navigation

7.0
Navigation is easy to use, although it's not the easiest system to navigate points of interest with. Audio quality is middling, and the system has to be turned up quite a bit to compete with all the background noise. The tinny in-headrest speakers feel more like a gimmick than a necessary addition.

Smartphone integration

6.5
Bluetooth is easy to connect and works well, including displaying incoming messages — although it will only recognize one message and one email app, at least with an Android phone. There's no Apple CarPlay or Android Auto, but two USB ports mean passenger and driver can each charge a device.

Driver aids

7.0
Optional blind-spot monitoring is a welcome addition with the small side mirrors, as is rear cross-traffic alert thanks to poor top-up visibility. The rearview camera makes it easy to take advantage of the 124's small size in tight spaces.

Voice control

8.0
The Mazda-sourced system does a reasonable job of interpreting commands, and offers prompts to help you along. It's capable of entering navigation destinations and finding points of interest. Still, only a limited set of functions is available, and there's no Google or Siri compatibility.

EdmundsScorecard

Overall6.4 / 10
Driving7.0
Comfort6.5
Interior6.5
Utility5.0
Technology7.0

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2018 FIAT 124 Spider.

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Most helpful consumer reviews

great car
larry kritzell,04/12/2019
Abarth 2dr Convertible (1.4L 4cyl Turbo 6M)
if you like sports cars and high performance vehicles you will love this little spider . its very quick , great handling , great response , beautiful ,top notch quality and no problems in the 29 months and 21k miles . solid as a convertible can be . no squeeks or rattles or shimme or shakes . the driving dynamics are excellent . even the ride is decent . what it needs is better cup holders and more interior storage space . a couple of cubby holes in the doors would help . service is low cost . every 10k . oil , filter , tire rotation , inspection , 70 - 75 $. great gas mileage also 32 - 37 mpg .
Very impressed!
Tony,01/08/2019
Abarth 2dr Convertible (1.4L 4cyl Turbo 6M)
Update after 12 months per request from Edmunds- The car continues to break in and now is much different and better than when I bought it. The exhaust sounds keeps getting better and engine performance has improved. Professional Reviewers would have a better viewpoint if they drove one that is broken in. Still is rock solid, not a single issue. The Recaro seats are very comfortable but it is still a tight cabin. I’m 5;8’ so it is fits me perfectly. I keep my cars in an air conditioned garage so that makes them better so that may help how this performs. I love this thing. My local Fiat dealer just closed so we have to wonder how long Fiat is for the USA. Thus, I’m glad I got this car while it is available. I also see some fully loaded Abarth versios that are very depreciated with very low miles so they are a steal for anyone. But because it seems Fiat in the USA is going away perhaps these will be harder to come by in the future so I’m glad I have one. This version is still very rare to see so it is nice to be driving something that is very different. Original review- I’ve now owned and driven this car for 6 months. First of all this car is a blast to drive. I’ve owned a variety of sports cars and this car is a fun as any of them but more beautiful than almost anything out there. I have to pause every time I walk up to it. What a design job! Pictures of it don’t do it justice. It is odd how in person the nose looks much longer, bolder and sexier than any photos-I don’t know how that happens. Also, this car is rock solid. I didn’t expect that but I’ve also owned a Tacoma and this car feels as solid as that, which doesn’t seem to make sense. Absolutely nothing has failed on it so build quality seems very high which I wasn’t sure of when I bought it. I rate the comfort high given what it is- a roadster. The top level trim seats are very comfortable. However, I don’t think the car is made for 4 hour drives. It is made for shorter drives or mountain foothills (l live on a curvy foothill) but I use it whenever I can for around town because it is simply so much fun to drive. I rated performance a 4/5 because it is true it could have more power but it is plenty for my needs. You can probably pass almost anyone if you want. The engine sound is fantastic. It took 2-3000 miles to break in but now broken in it it even more fun. It seems this car is a secret because it took me 6 months to see another one on the road and I live close to a Fiat dealer.
So far so good!
In-Lyk-Flynn,02/13/2019
Abarth 2dr Convertible (1.4L 4cyl Turbo 6M)
Heard a lot of reliability issues with the Fiat brand. With 6000 miles in..it's been flawless. Super fun to drive for the money. If you are looking for a weekend/2nd car..then this is it! Wish it had 200+hp and hardtop roof option, other than that, I love the car!
2nd car to my Maserati
Bill D.,04/24/2019
Abarth 2dr Convertible (1.4L 4cyl Turbo 6M)
I have an older Maserati 2 seater convertible and have always had exotic 2 seaters, the first a Facel Vega HK 500. I was considering a used Ferrari but the things have gotten to be like Ford Mustangs, they just keep getting bigger and bigger...now they're huge and just too way too much electronics. I wanted a simple sports car that was fun to drive and had a decent clutch and 5 or 6 speed transmission with recaro seats and bun-warmers for starting out on cold days. A good stereo was also on my list as well as bright headlights. This thing met all those requirements and was available with adaptive headlights + a Bose 7 speaker stereo. It has a good cruise control and I use it for a daily driver. Will keep it, like all my cars, until I tire of looking at it - that is usually about 25 years. I still have by '93 Toyota Tacoma extend-cab. The Maserati is an '87. Wish I hadn't sold my '71 Triumph Daytona a few years ago, didn't ride anymore - but still miss just looking at it.

Features & Specs

MPG
26 city / 35 hwy
Seats 2
6-speed manual
Gas
164 hp @ 5500 rpm
See all Used 2018 FIAT 124 Spider Abarth features & specs

Safety

Our experts like the 124 Spider models:

Enhanced Accident Response System
Cuts off fuel to the engine, unlocks doors, blinks hazard lights and turns on interior lights in the event of an accident.
Blind-Spot Monitoring
Alerts the driver to other vehicles in blind spots.
Rear Cross-Traffic Alert
Warns the driver of oncoming perpendicular traffic when reversing out of a parking space or driveway.

More about the 2018 FIAT 124 Spider

Used 2018 FIAT 124 Spider Abarth Overview

The Used 2018 FIAT 124 Spider Abarth is offered in the following styles: Abarth 2dr Convertible (1.4L 4cyl Turbo 6M).

What's a good price on a Used 2018 FIAT 124 Spider Abarth?

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Which used 2018 FIAT 124 Spider Abarths are available in my area?

Used 2018 FIAT 124 Spider Abarth Listings and Inventory

Simply research the type of used car you're interested in and then select a prew-owned vehicle from our massive database to find cheap used cars for sale near you. Once you have identified a used or CPO vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the Used 2018 FIAT 124 Spider Abarth.

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2018 FIAT 124 Spider Abarth for sale near you.

Can't find a used 2018 FIAT 124 Spider 124 Spider Abarth you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used FIAT 124 Spider for sale - 10 great deals out of 16 listings starting at $15,246.

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Should I lease or buy a 2018 FIAT 124 Spider?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

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