Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has launched a new, expanded Abarth 595 hot hatch range. The line-up absorbs the old Abarth 500 models and brings 5bhp increases in power, a new mechanical limited-slip differential and a raft of visual updates.
On sale now for £15,090, the entry-level 595 uses a turbocharged 1.4-litre T-Jet engine that produces 143bhp and 152lb ft of torque. Above this sits the 595 Turismo, which starts at £18,290 and produces 163bhp and 170lb ft, while at the top of the range is the 595 Competizione, which features the most potent, 178bhp 1.4 T-Jet engine and costs £20,290.
This range-topper uses a freer-flowing Record Monza exhaust to put out an impressive 130bhp per litre. It can accelerate from 0-62mph in 6.7sec, making it two-tenths quicker off the line than the rival Ford Fiesta ST.
All 595 models come as standard with a five-speed manual gearbox, with a robotised sequential gearbox with shift paddles optional. All are also available in convertible guise for a £2000 premium over the figures for the hatchback models.
Buyers of the manual Abarth 595 Competizione can specify a mechanical limited-slip differential on their car, as part of a new Performance Pack, which adds 17in Supersport alloys, Sabelt leather and Alcantara seats with carbonfibre shells, 595 badging in the interior and a red, white or gloss black finish for exterior and interior trim.
Also standard on the 595 Turismo and 595 Competizione are Koni frequency-selective dampers, which adjust to driving conditions to offer a softer ride at low speeds and a firmer one at pace. They’re fitted to the rear end only on the Turismo and to all four corners on the Competizione.