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....
And I think Fiat's hold their value better than Jags. I know, that isn't saying much.
kind of like saying ‘do you want one hard gut punch or two maybe not so hard punches?’
 

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Maybe something from the PSA parts bin, then?

How many 124s per year did Fiat sell in the car's prime? I imagine the number isn't far off Miata's sales.

And I think Fiat's hold their value better than Jags. I know, that isn't saying much.
I highly doubt any 31 year old Fiat has a better value than my 31 year old Jag... But that is besides the point ;) They are different classes of car.

The 124 sales are A LOT lower than those of the Miata. Fiat intended on using the base for a new Alfa. After consilidating their losses, Fiat opted to get out of the Mazda contract as soon as possible and as cheaply. So the 124 was "thrown" on the market but not advertised in order to keep the sales numbers down... Making it easier to leave the contract with Mazda. No European state, not even Italy, offers the 124 new anymore.

And PSA's engines aren't certified for the USA. So the main market would require yet again new emissions testing and validation for a niche market for a niche car. The largest PSA petrol engine is a 1.6l which is prone to issues... Even BMW moved away from their engines. The only engines they could probably get which were bigger (I THINK you can still get a 2.0l non turbo from Opel), are the ones Opel fits but they are all GM engines and I doubt GM would allow Opel to sell the engines to their rival company... And in the end, it would simply be easier to ask Mazda to let them fit their 2.0l engines instead...

Fiat has NO interest in the 124. It is a loss maker, was intended at first as a halo car (kind of like the Bugattis are for VW's group or Ferrari used to be for the Fiat group). Never would they and will they invest in newer engines.
 

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Pardon me to jump in at this stage of the discussion, maybe I might offer a different point of view. Also excuse me for the length of the message, I promise is not boring to read and might offer useful insights.

So far the topic has split into two different arguments, the first being the need for a new engine and, the second, the reason why the 124 Spider's production has been discontinued and, more in general, what is FCA' strategy for the future.

About the engine, think that Fiat will most probably replace the 1.4 with the 1.3 or - rumors say - even with a smaller engine, mainly for environmental reasons. In fact as you may know, starting from 2025, Europe will officially start the Euro 7 standard for CO2 emissions which will impose a maximum of 80g/km of CO2 produced by cars. To put this into perspective, think that currently the ONLY non fully electric vehicle coming close to this figure is the Toyota Yaris Hybrid. The Fiat 124 Spider is at 140 g/km and the Abarth is at 148g/km. The 1.3 Firefly is at 136g/km and the 1.0 Turbo is at 130g/km. Last but not least, think that here in Italy Fiat has just released the 500 and Panda* with Hybrid engines. And they will be the first of a long series of hybrid engine updates. The 1.4 is still the go-to engine for most of the 'sporty' production line, but as it cannot be updated to be more 'green', it is destined to be discontinued.

Regarding the sales of the 124, other than the image which Fiat has in the USA*, aside from having to deal with the car being perceived as a 'MX-5 mutt' by the general public, think also that the car is produced in Japan, completed in Italy and then shipped all over the globe. And this is a big production cost. Add the pitiful sales and you obtain a very small margin for Fiat. On top of all this, as you may know, Mazda shares the Hiroshima production line across all cars manufactured. We might speculate that Mazda raised the production cost for Fiat and that they backed off from the partnership, seeing not enough margins. Remember that the only parts of the car entirely made in Italy are the engine, the exhaust, the headlights and the optional Brembo brakes. Everything else is made in Japan by Mazda.

That said, it might also be, but this is just my theory, that they are 'freezing' the project. They will retain the platform for future projects, having to come up with a 100% Italian version for the future. Who knows? It is up to us owners to make the 124 a car they want to make again, with our love and passion for the project.

*Panda : The Fiat Panda is the most sold car in Italy. It is currently at its third version. Famous models have been the first gen 4x4 and the second gen 100hp (which has been the base for the current 500 Abarth).

*Fiat's reliability : According to the document "Vehicle Dependability Study 2019" conducted by J.D. Power, Fiat is effectively the least reliable in USA (Lexus is considered the most reliable), but the same study on the European market shows the brand to be on par of Audi and BMW.
 

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I highly doubt any 31 year old Fiat has a better value than my 31 year old Jag... But that is besides the point ;) They are different classes of car.

The 124 sales are A LOT lower than those of the Miata. Fiat intended on using the base for a new Alfa. After consilidating their losses, Fiat opted to get out of the Mazda contract as soon as possible and as cheaply. So the 124 was "thrown" on the market but not advertised in order to keep the sales numbers down... Making it easier to leave the contract with Mazda. No European state, not even Italy, offers the 124 new anymore.

And PSA's engines aren't certified for the USA. So the main market would require yet again new emissions testing and validation for a niche market for a niche car. The largest PSA petrol engine is a 1.6l which is prone to issues... Even BMW moved away from their engines. The only engines they could probably get which were bigger (I THINK you can still get a 2.0l non turbo from Opel), are the ones Opel fits but they are all GM engines and I doubt GM would allow Opel to sell the engines to their rival company... And in the end, it would simply be easier to ask Mazda to let them fit their 2.0l engines instead...

Fiat has NO interest in the 124. It is a loss maker, was intended at first as a halo car (kind of like the Bugattis are for VW's group or Ferrari used to be for the Fiat group). Never would they and will they invest in newer engines.
Got to say......Jaguar SS100 was one of my Favorite old Sports cars, I never liked the big heavy stuff but when the 3.4 1960's getaway car Jag came out followed be the late 1960's 2.8 and 4.2 original versions I lusted for ownership of a 4.2 ! The E Type stands out, not the expensive early stuff but the last one 1973 ish ? and I love the F pace and F type looks. I have to agree that old Fiats do not have much pull apart from the 131 Rally car and I did like the late 1960s-80s 124 looks. Mercedes to me where probably the Best post war vehicles that only went wrong (for a while) post 190 2-5 Cosworth era....I think 1994 on the Mercedes had problems with build quality, the 230, 250 and 280 sports saloons looked the part but that 2.5 190 Cosworth in it's day shone ! Cheers
ron
 

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Got to say......Jaguar SS100 was one of my Favorite old Sports cars, I never liked the big heavy stuff but when the 3.4 1960's getaway car Jag came out followed be the late 1960's 2.8 and 4.2 original versions I lusted for ownership of a 4.2 ! The E Type stands out, not the expensive early stuff but the last one 1973 ish ? and I love the F pace and F type looks. I have to agree that old Fiats do not have much pull apart from the 131 Rally car and I did like the late 1960s-80s 124 looks. Mercedes to me where probably the Best post war vehicles that only went wrong (for a while) post 190 2-5 Cosworth era....I think 1994 on the Mercedes had problems with build quality, the 230, 250 and 280 sports saloons looked the part but that 2.5 190 Cosworth in it's day shone ! Cheers
ron
If we are talking about heritage and future value, based on my experience in the field, usually the rarest the car the more likely will it become a classic.

Fiat has always mass produced cars and only a few models are considered a true classic with a notable heritage and a high resale value. If the 124 Spider manages to survive the test of time it might not become a classic in its own right, but it will surely be a unicorn.
 

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I am Certain that the "124 Spider, Abarth" model at least WILL become a Classic Hit as it has the "Abarth" name and in the UK market at least was sold "Fully Loaded" with all the quality kit. The Lusso model will always find Owners who want luxury whilst the Classica will be The Most "Played With" (Modded) model as it is basic and a blank canvass, even down to the basic cloth seat covers.
I also read the JD Power USA & UK Dependability reports showing the Fiat brand sitting between Audi and BMW at the foot of the table for the USA and UK, the 500 model at 18 out of 25 in small car reliability in "Whatcar" Reliability 2019 Survey with no Fiat listed in family car section but I don't think anybody here is knocking the 500 or the Panda as they both sell well on looks alone.
The 124 Spider is now doomed worldwide it seems from everything I read here, including the Chairman's statement, and that is a shame as it is one Brilliant piece of kit and should have been sold with Full Advertising, especially pushing the Famous "Abarth" name. Hardly anybody here knows what my Spider is (though they mostly love it) and as for "Abarth"................What ? they say !
I see your reference to future Fiat participation in the Sports Car sector and I would not be surprised to see the Mazda MX5 E when it is born looking very much like an updated 124 Spider......It ruined the MG name when that Eastern company bought it then produced crap cars using that famous name. In Mazda's case it could be another thumping success as the earlier MX 5's have been......leaving our little 124 Spider as a Very Rare and Reliable Sports Car that captured the Heart and Brain of the Clever Enthusiasts who invested in it, who knows...some could be reading this rant right now............😊 Cheers
ron
 

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I agree with your rant 😊.
 

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<edited for brevity>

*Fiat's reliability : According to the document "Vehicle Dependability Study 2019" conducted by J.D. Power, Fiat is effectively the least reliable in USA (Lexus is considered the most reliable), but the same study on the European market shows the brand to be on par of Audi and BMW.
I place little value in what JDPower reports in their studies, as I, like a lot of others consider them as an outfit that pimps their reviews to whoever pays them the most. I don't think they have much credibility, but sadly, there are folks who believe JDPower speaks the gospel. I've never owned an older generation Fiat, but I can state that my 2013 500 Abarth and my current 2017 124 Spider Abarth have been rock solid vehicles for me. The only real issue I experienced was something quirky going on with my USB ports, but I think that's likely a self-inflicted injury from applying hacks to the system.

Time may proove me wrong regarding my feelings about Fitat, but I would also say you can spend a lot more money for "higher end" vehicles that have significant issues. I think Fiat is just fine. :)
 

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Pardon me to jump in at this stage of the discussion, maybe I might offer a different point of view. Also excuse me for the length of the message, I promise is not boring to read and might offer useful insights.

So far the topic has split into two different arguments, the first being the need for a new engine and, the second, the reason why the 124 Spider's production has been discontinued and, more in general, what is FCA' strategy for the future.

About the engine, think that Fiat will most probably replace the 1.4 with the 1.3 or - rumors say - even with a smaller engine, mainly for environmental reasons. In fact as you may know, starting from 2025, Europe will officially start the Euro 7 standard for CO2 emissions which will impose a maximum of 80g/km of CO2 produced by cars. To put this into perspective, think that currently the ONLY non fully electric vehicle coming close to this figure is the Toyota Yaris Hybrid. The Fiat 124 Spider is at 140 g/km and the Abarth is at 148g/km. The 1.3 Firefly is at 136g/km and the 1.0 Turbo is at 130g/km. Last but not least, think that here in Italy Fiat has just released the 500 and Panda* with Hybrid engines. And they will be the first of a long series of hybrid engine updates. The 1.4 is still the go-to engine for most of the 'sporty' production line, but as it cannot be updated to be more 'green', it is destined to be discontinued.

Regarding the sales of the 124, other than the image which Fiat has in the USA*, aside from having to deal with the car being perceived as a 'MX-5 mutt' by the general public, think also that the car is produced in Japan, completed in Italy and then shipped all over the globe. And this is a big production cost. Add the pitiful sales and you obtain a very small margin for Fiat. On top of all this, as you may know, Mazda shares the Hiroshima production line across all cars manufactured. We might speculate that Mazda raised the production cost for Fiat and that they backed off from the partnership, seeing not enough margins. Remember that the only parts of the car entirely made in Italy are the engine, the exhaust, the headlights and the optional Brembo brakes. Everything else is made in Japan by Mazda.

That said, it might also be, but this is just my theory, that they are 'freezing' the project. They will retain the platform for future projects, having to come up with a 100% Italian version for the future. Who knows? It is up to us owners to make the 124 a car they want to make again, with our love and passion for the project.

*Panda : The Fiat Panda is the most sold car in Italy. It is currently at its third version. Famous models have been the first gen 4x4 and the second gen 100hp (which has been the base for the current 500 Abarth).

*Fiat's reliability : According to the document "Vehicle Dependability Study 2019" conducted by J.D. Power, Fiat is effectively the least reliable in USA (Lexus is considered the most reliable), but the same study on the European market shows the brand to be on par of Audi and BMW.
Well, both, be it engine as well as sales are related. Why offer a different engine choice if the sales are there to justify it...
 

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I am happy with the engine as is. Could it use more horsepower? Sure. But it doesn’t feel inadequate as it is.

I have a stock Abarth with manual transmission. The only mods it has are a Goodwin RoadsterSport complete exhaust, and the GFB DV+ thingy.

When the warranty runs out in another three years, perhaps I’ll get a larger turbo. That’s it.
 

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I am happy with the engine as is. Could it use more horsepower? Sure. But it doesn’t feel inadequate as it is.

I have a stock Abarth with manual transmission. The only mods it has are a Goodwin RoadsterSport complete exhaust, and the GFB DV+ thingy.

When the warranty runs out in another three years, perhaps I’ll get a larger turbo. That’s it.
I read up on the weight to power ratio not long ago and because the Spider is so light and has a turbo, it rated very good, in fact, so good i calculated it all, wrote it down on a scrap of paper...then lost it !
The Bigger Turbo idea " I Think" may involve a bigger air induction system, maybe exhaust center pipe should be larger bore and some tuning may be an idea so...I would suggest studying the threads here and hoping one of our experts who have completed the "Stuffed Turbo" Mod sees this and gives us all the full story on what it takes to turn an "Abarth" into a "Monster Abarth" including gains and losses, if any .......
The warranty is only affected to claims on the Modded items or if they caused further damage elsewhere so again. The Experts" here should put you right. I "Abarthised" my Classica withing the first 6 months of ownership, without going silly so I think my own warranty may be void, or at least "dodgy", but.....God, am I enjoying the results......😆
Cheers
ron
 

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I don’t know how FCA dealers are where you are, but around here they range from terrible to atrocious. So I ain’t going to risk giving them an excuse to void my warranty.

The stuffed turbo idea is appealing. Hopefully there are more data points by the time ready to do it.
 

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I don’t know how FCA dealers are where you are, but around here they range from terrible to atrocious. So I ain’t going to risk giving them an excuse to void my warranty.

The stuffed turbo idea is appealing. Hopefully there are more data points by the time ready to do it.
My dealership's sales team were beyond pathetic, but thankfully, the dealership's Service Manager, and the technician that does my work for me there are extremely good and very knowledgable. Using an example, when they installed my EC intercooler for me, they chopped the work hours in half because "it was our first, and a learning experience, so we thought this was the right thing to do". Can't beat that kind of support. They also have no issues with me doing my own oil and filter changes. I go there, they load the supplies in my trunk... I go home, do the changes, and bring the used supplied back to them. They unload the used materials from me, and then record the service being done in their system.
 

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I don’t know how FCA dealers are where you are, but around here they range from terrible to atrocious. So I ain’t going to risk giving them an excuse to void my warranty.

The stuffed turbo idea is appealing. Hopefully there are more data points by the time ready to do it.
Yes...Terrible service reviews here as well sadly, Great whilst selling, but the test is when you need them........
The Power to Weight ratio thing, if you just Google that title (without thing) and insert your cars power and weight then compare it with some other car that you think is suitable you will see the result instantly. I compared my Classica against my old 2006 R 53 Mini Cooper S and was very pleased as the Cooper S was 170 hp whilst my Classica was only 140 hp yet results showed ......for R53- 0.063 hp/lbs, Classica 0.057 FOR EVERY POUND OF CAR
following my "Brexit Mods" I calculated that I now had some 152 hp so added that in and found that I now had a PWR of 0.062.
Most Enthusiasts know that the R53 2004-06 Mini Cooper S was one sharp tool and had a Supercharger so because of the Spiders lighter body weight my Spider is almost as sharp now, so....with your Stuffed Turbo you will need goggles and oxygen !
The figures are as follows to save scratching about for you........
Classica & Lusso Curb weight 2436 Gross 2941, Abarth 2477 - 2941.
The R53 I used........................2678 ........ 3461 and the power was 170 hp.

So....The Higher your PWR the Faster your car Accelerates.

Now my Brain hurts again so I must go and put the kettle on, Cheers Now !
ron
 

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My dealership's sales team were beyond pathetic, but thankfully, the dealership's Service Manager, and the technician that does my work for me there are extremely good and very knowledgable. Using an example, when they installed my EC intercooler for me, they chopped the work hours in half because "it was our first, and a learning experience, so we thought this was the right thing to do". Can't beat that kind of support. They also have no issues with me doing my own oil and filter changes. I go there, they load the supplies in my trunk... I go home, do the changes, and bring the used supplied back to them. They unload the used materials from me, and then record the service being done in their system.

Jeez - I may start driving up to you for servicing. Last time I went for warranty work, they waited until I'd made the appointment, driven out there, stood in line to sign in, explained the issues (again), and only then decided to tell me they didn't have anyone qualified to work on the 124.
 

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Jeez - I may start driving up to you for servicing. Last time I went for warranty work, they waited until I'd made the appointment, driven out there, stood in line to sign in, explained the issues (again), and only then decided to tell me they didn't have anyone qualified to work on the 124.
Graeme, you know, if you had bought a Jeep, you wouldn’t be having these issues.

Dan
 

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I think the Abarth will eventually be a desired variant, more from the MX5/Miata segment of the enthusiast community. Its Italian connection won't be relevant as much as its MX5 heritage, its relative obscurity and rareness, combined with its looks, and the turbo. It will be a case of "Did you know Mazda actually made a Turbo MX5?"
 

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Graeme, you know, if you had bought a Jeep, you wouldn’t be having these issues.

Dan
Not necessarily. I have a Jeep dealer 5 miles away. But I drive to one 62 miles away for service because I think the one near me is incompetent.
 

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I am still convinced, just like the OP, that the 1.4 needs a refresh (but not necessarily on this car), particularly because I find it quite 'empty' in the low end, whereas more modern turbo engines already manage to do better.

The said, producing more power is not actually very easy on the 1.4 Turbo, and the difference between the stock Fiat and the Abarth is actually just the ECU map and the Record Monza exhaust. Nothing else. The only other significant difference would be the lsd, but it does not affect the power itself, rather the delivery of it.

Adapting the power of the Fiat to the one of the Abarth it is really just a matter of remapping the ECU and maybe adding a less constricted exhaust. The two engines are the same. Same components, same turbo, same intercooler, same clutch, same gearbox. And the stock engine is built to withstand power up to 200hp without upgrading any of the components, except the exhaust - which is known to be quite 'closed' in modern cars.

Honestly I still fail to understand the American tuning tradition, which has a fixation for bigger components, bigger turbo, bigger intercooler, modified air-intake and so on and so forth, when instead the stock parts nowadays have such a great tolerance.

Here in Italy (yes we are good, but not always the best) we have tuners successfully and safely extracting around 220hp from this engine with just the full exhaust and a remap, with everything else stock. Of course this type of 'build' would be for street use only. I, myself, would surely add a bigger intercooler if I had to go around the track.

Of course the choice is always yours, and if you think that having upgraded components it is better then so be it, but why spending generous amounts of money when you can achieve similar results with standard components?
 
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