In the past when i asked people what kind of car they had I would be annoyed, for no, good reason, by a response similar to, I have a ZX2 or a SRT4 instead of saying Escort or Neon. But i recently caught myself referring to the car as the Abarth. maybe it is because in my mind i am differentiating it from the first 124 as i referred to that as the Fiat but maybe not, guess i have to watch that before lest i be a hypocrite. In the US it is a trim level where others have it as a separate model.
I say it's an ABARTH spider. Automatically the values goes above $100k if I tell them a Fiat 124 spider, the values goes under $30k so to their faces. LOL
Last year while gazing at a Costco, I had all the employees quit their post to come and see it and some even went saying this must be above $150k Can. I smiled let them enjoy the look, sat in and drove with a big smile.
I go with 'Abarth' '124 Abarth' or sometimes 'Fiat Abarth'. This is for two reasons, one we own two 124's ('75) and the Abarth. We have to have a way to differentiate them. The second is that I paid the premium price for a reason. For the same reason, I don't call it an MX-5 or Miata, it does not make sense to me to not call it what it is. The Classico (iMHO) would be called a '124 [Spider]' or add in 'Fiat' like I do with the 'Abarth'. The Lusso is the same with 'and I got the Lusso packag' to say it is the upgraded package and not the base model. These are all based on the 124 platform, which is itself based on the Miata. It annoys me if somebody says it's just a 'Miata'. I acknowledge it is based on that platform but then point out the differences. In the same way, it's more than just the base model.
I've always referred to my friends Abarth 500 as Abarth 500, so I found myself just saying Abarth 124. Kind of like I would say a Shelby Mustang, or Z06 Corvette. I have enough car friends that we refer to things by the final designation first.
Depends where you are. Outside North America, the Abarth version is a Abarth 124 Spider but in North America it's a Fiat 124 Spider Abarth simply because they decided Abarth wasn't going to be the brand in North America.
I tell them its the Alfa Romeo Spider they have been hearing about for the last few years. Seriously, a few weeks ago, a guy came up to me in the Lowe's parking lot asked me if that's what it was. I told him it was a Fiat Spider, since that seems to be the most informative answer in the fewest syllables.
I guess if I had the Abarth, I would call it an Abarth Spider.
I love this forum. I just picked my Abarth up last night and pondered this very question on the LONG drive home. I've already been asked a few times what it is. Since the front and rear badges say Abarth, I think I'm going to go with Abarth 124 Spider. Being Italian, it's nice saying I drive an Italian sports car. If they want more info, I agree with the previous poster who said "let them Google it".
Personally, calling it an Abarth seems confusing and obtuse: when people ask 'what is it', they want information. I don't think there's anything hugely different between the Abarth and the Lusso or Classica to warrant the differentiation from a Fiat (would you call your car a Classica Spider when asked?).
Fiat Spider, Fiat 124 or just 'a Fiat' is the information that people are after.