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The two roadsters keep getting compared to each other, or more specifically, the Fiat 124 Spider to the Mazda MX-5 but the Spider can teach its Japanese sibling a thing or two.

Badge-engineering isn’t a new concept in the auto industry, automakers can save a lot of money as designing and engineering a new model comes with a high cost and customers benefits from this by getting more options to choose from. Unfortunately, sometimes badge-engineering doesn’t produce the best results but, Fiat has put in a lot of effort to develop a distinct image for the 124 Spider.

Sitting on the platform of one of the most raced cars in the world, Fiat improved the suspension setup to give it a distinct drive experience. The 124 Spider’s suspension instills trust in the driver when it’s getting thrown into the bends because the whole car turns into the corner as one, it won’t get tail happy like the Miata. There may be a bit of terminal understeer but that can be fixed with mid corner braking and power.

A more composed suspension system along with the small turbocharged 160hp 1.4-litre makes the 124 Spider faster than the Miata on back roads.

Check out Motor Trend’s video for a closer look at both the 124 Spider and Miata.

 

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could this be an indication we can expect the 124 spider to not depreciate as much as the Miata will?

if they both depreciate at a rate very similar to each other then buying the 124 used will be a no brainer.
 

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The differences so are significant that I'd say it's closer to platform sharing than badge engineering.
That's exactly right. I can't stand that fact that these journalists say they are the same car with minor differences. They are two DIFFERENT cars. They do share the basic chassis, but if that makes them the same then the following cars are also the same:

Dodge Challenger and Dodge Charger

Lamborghini Gallardo and Audi R8

Toyota Supra and Toyota Cressida

Chrysler 300 and E class Mercedes

Mitsubishi Eclipse and Dodge Stratus

Ford Mustang Fox body and Ford LTD sedan

Jeep Compass and Mitsubishi Lancer EVO 10

The differences between the 124 and MX-5 are at least as great as most or all of those examples, yet EVERY SINGLE article on the 124 starts off talking about it's relations to the MX-5, I can't think of any other car where that's the case.

Greg
 

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Different drive train, different suspension, completely different body.... sounds like a different car to me. As pointed out above lots of cars use the same platform...why waste a good platform on just one car. Plus it saves design and build cost that can be used somewhere else.
 

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HE Should have taken the Abarth instead of the Classica. It would have made a difference in the straight and exhaust sound, mind you the Abarth while inside don't hear much.
 

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That's exactly right. I can't stand that fact that these journalists say they are the same car with minor differences. They are two DIFFERENT cars. They do share the basic chassis, but if that makes them the same then the following cars are also the same:

Dodge Challenger and Dodge Charger

Lamborghini Gallardo and Audi R8

Toyota Supra and Toyota Cressida

Chrysler 300 and E class Mercedes

Mitsubishi Eclipse and Dodge Stratus

Ford Mustang Fox body and Ford LTD sedan

Jeep Compass and Mitsubishi Lancer EVO 10

The differences between the 124 and MX-5 are at least as great as most or all of those examples, yet EVERY SINGLE article on the 124 starts off talking about it's relations to the MX-5, I can't think of any other car where that's the case.

Greg

So according to the Journos my wife's Jeep Cherokee is a rebadged Alfa Giulietta.
Here in Australia we have a bit of a history with badge engineering. Back in the 80's the Button Plan named after the Government minister tried to rationalise the local car industry to just six models. We had Toyota/Holdens, Ford/Nissans and Nissan/Holdens where the only difference was literally the badge on the car. Having owned a VAG car for the last 8 years I'm quite familiar with the concept of platform sharing. Unfortunately once Journos hop on their Hobby Horse they tend tend to stick to it.
 

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It is an ideal situation for the customers. Previously all we had were those (crappy) GM roadsters. And I think a BMW Z-series car would be a poor substitute, not to mention being more expensive.
 

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That's exactly right. I can't stand that fact that these journalists say they are the same car with minor differences. They are two DIFFERENT cars. They do share the basic chassis, but if that makes them the same then the following cars are also the same:
SNIP!
The differences between the 124 and MX-5 are at least as great as most or all of those examples, yet EVERY SINGLE article on the 124 starts off talking about it's relations to the MX-5, I can't think of any other car where that's the case.

Greg
I think you're right. The owners of these cars would disagree, some perhaps violently! My Dad had a Cressida, and the engine was the only common element with the Supra. It was the only thing worth using off that (obsolete) car. I have driven a number of Supras and they are definitely not my Dad's kind of car!
I think car journalists come up with this drek when they're out of ideas or drunk. Maybe both!

Pete
 

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It's a trend with journalists, they tend to compare models with similarities even though buyers consider them completely different vehicles. Same applies to engines, chassis, older vs newer models, etc.
 

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Interesting! The Abarth Spider was nominated as the best drivers car of the year here in Australia. 🤔 And! The Abarth Spider is a FIAT! It says so on my registration papers. I get the feel that some people like to piggie back on to the Fiat some what because Fiat turned it into a better car. That is just my take on it rightly or wrongly.
 
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