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Discussion Starter #1
Hello 124 fans from Springfield, Virginia, USA. I'm in the market for a new convertible or targa to replace my 2005 Lotus Elise that a Mercedes driver decided to make a left turn in front of, causing it to be a total loss. As much as I loved the Elise, I need something softer (slushbox for wife and kids, local dealers, etc.) moving forward. The MX-5 and 124 top the list at the moment with a budget of about $35K. I few ideas/questions I'd like to bounce off anyone interested in discussing:

1) Are the FIAT tops having the same strap breaking problems that the MX-5s are?

2) Out of all of the 124s and MX-5s, I like the Abarth most. I prefer a unique badge and prefer to keep my cars stock. Any word on when they'll be delivered to dealers? I'm looking to buy in the next 3 months.

3) My reservation on the Abarth is the plastic lower front fascia. It just looks cheap to me compared to the other model's painted lower fascia. Is it functional (engine/brake cooling)? Any thoughts on how hard it would be to swap with a Lusso's lower front fascia?

4) Perhaps the wrong forum to ask, but I'm also interested in the MX-5 RF. Any word on deliveries of those?

Thanks all. I was fairly active in the forums for my previous cars, so I look forward to the same here if I buy a 124.
 

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I haven't heard of any strap breaking issues.

We hear that the Abarths will show up this month.

I doubt they are functional, but as I haven't seen an Abarth in person, I can't say for sure.

I don't know anything about the MX-5 RF.

Greg
 

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Hello 124 fans from Springfield, Virginia, USA. I'm in the market for a new convertible or targa to replace my 2005 Lotus Elise that a Mercedes driver decided to make a left turn in front of, causing it to be a total loss. As much as I loved the Elise, I need something softer (slushbox for wife and kids, local dealers, etc.) moving forward. The MX-5 and 124 top the list at the moment with a budget of about $35K. I few ideas/questions I'd like to bounce off anyone interested in discussing:

1) Are the FIAT tops having the same strap breaking problems that the MX-5s are?

2) Out of all of the 124s and MX-5s, I like the Abarth most. I prefer a unique badge and prefer to keep my cars stock. Any word on when they'll be delivered to dealers? I'm looking to buy in the next 3 months.

3) My reservation on the Abarth is the plastic lower front fascia. It just looks cheap to me compared to the other model's painted lower fascia. Is it functional (engine/brake cooling)? Any thoughts on how hard it would be to swap with a Lusso's lower front fascia?

4) Perhaps the wrong forum to ask, but I'm also interested in the MX-5 RF. Any word on deliveries of those?

Thanks all. I was fairly active in the forums for my previous cars, so I look forward to the same here if I buy a 124.
1) I have not heard of any strap issues.
2) If you want unique badge and smoother ride, consider the Prima Edizione.
3) I'm with you on the Abarth front facia. I don't like it. Again, Prima Edizione may be your answer.
4) No idea.
 

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If you checks cars.com some dealers in Pennsylvania & Texas now have them on their lot too.

It shouldn't be long before there's a few more throughout the country.

Surprised you don't like the lower fascia on the abarth, that's kind of the appeal to me for its looks.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks all,

By unique badge I meant the Abarth badge instead of the FIAT badge. Fewer badges are better for me, so I will likely remove the rear 124spider badge if it doesn't have posts. Anyone know?

The lower front fascia looks ok to me on the black and red versions online. I should probably reserve opinion until I see them in person. It should prevent the curb rash I've experienced in other cars. Auto styling to me has always been down to individual taste; to each their own. Mine would be red because I like the historic racing colors.

Thanks for the search tip on cars.com! I'd been using dealer and FIAT sites.
 

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I Don't have specifics on the RF edition of the Mazda, but I got an e-mail from Mazda offering me one of the launch editions of the RF's last week, limited run of 1000. Looks like it's close to hitting the streets.
 

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I pre-ordered the RF last week, although I have no intention of going through with it. Thought it would be good to save a place in line until having a look at it, however. The first RFs (pre-ordered) will arrive in February, followed by regular production RFs.
 

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I imagine broken straps would be more difficult to detect with the lined roof.

I'm also not a fan of the Abarth's lower front fascia, though I think adding a red lip would help.

Sorry about your Elise's demise. I hope it protected you well.

Cav and Hokie? Oh, my.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
The Elise did keep me safe, just paid the price in the process. I agree on the red lip; in fact I found a youtube review of a European prototype 124 Abarth which had a red lip on the lower front fascia, so perhaps the aftermarket will fill that void. The prototype also had an Abarth badge on the steering wheel, which I would prefer over the FIAT badge I see in pictures of new US stock. I wonder if any of the first batch for sale will have just the Safety and Comfort option group instead of the Luxury option group? I use my phone for tunes and navigation, so the XM and built-in Nav don't appeal to me.
 

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Actually, the bottom part of the abarth's front is painted black, so no aftermarket parts are needed. Just needs to be painted.
 
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