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I currently own an NC MX 5, and I am hoping (planning) on buying the 124 Abarth, but I haven't been able to drive a 124 manual yet -- my dealer only has autos. I drove the ND MX 5 today, and I was shocked by the electrically powered automatic steering. In my NC, there is a good feel to the wheel. When you turn the car you feel a little resistance and feedback. In the ND today, it was like you were activating a switch -- turn the wheel a little and the car turns but no feel, no feedback. I'm worried that the 124 has the ND steering, and I haven't found any real discussion about it online. Can anyone help?
 

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Yes, the steering is the same. You can drive an automatic and see for yourself.
Yes, and no. Both cars use the same electric power steering system. However, FIAT hoped to improve on the 124's "feel" by adjusting its EPS programming. Many journalists have commented that the 124's steering is a definite improvement over the ND's dead feel, and that the 124's feels weightier and less nervous (with other suspension and weight factors at play, also).

Electric power steering is here to stay, with both pros and cons. It will likely improve over the years. Until then, if you want the best EPS, you'll need to buy a Porsche.
 

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I think the steering was slightly better on our MY08 NC, but it's been gone for 2 years so it's hard to recall. My BRZ'S steering is better than the Abarth's though. Not by a huge amount, but it's better.
 

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I currently own an NC MX 5, and I am hoping (planning) on buying the 124 Abarth, but I haven't been able to drive a 124 manual yet -- my dealer only has autos. I drove the ND MX 5 today, and I was shocked by the electrically powered automatic steering. In my NC, there is a good feel to the wheel. When you turn the car you feel a little resistance and feedback. In the ND today, it was like you were activating a switch -- turn the wheel a little and the car turns but no feel, no feedback. I'm worried that the 124 has the ND steering, and I haven't found any real discussion about it online. Can anyone help?
With time every customer we have seen in ND likes the steering...and if they later go drive an NC it seems suddenly heavy by comparison. I still have several of our very FAST NC parked right next to our ND and our Fiat 124. At recent annual big Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca event I was jumping back and forth between our fast NC choices and our ND... and going around the track over 100 mph while giving interviews on camera to members of the Mazda Press Department. That constant jumping back and forth between NC steering and ND steering was no big deal. So trust me, if you got the ND you would get accustomed to the steering in just a few days and forget that you ever had any question about it, same with every ND owner I see in our shop daily who had the NC before. The Fiat 124 steering is a bit heavier calibration than ND, though not as heavy as NC. The part I notice more in comparison to the ND is that the Fiat has slightly thicker steering wheel which my big hands appreciate for better grip.

Laguna Pics of our 318 HP Supercharged NC top of the famous Corkscrew, and driving our ND same event back to back....and quick video snip of our Supercharged NC eating the Laguna front straight in just 10 seconds. When going this fast you want to feel confident in the steering and whether in our various NC or ND the steering is no issue after you have a few days to get the feel of it.


 
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