Currently reading: Abarth 600 to arrive by 2025 as brand’s second hot EV
Electric hot hatch could adopt smaller 500e's 152bhp motor amid driver-focused chassis tweaks

The new Fiat 600 EV will be the brand's next model to receive the Abarth treatment as the Italian performance division expands its line-up.

The go-faster crossover will follow the 500e hatchback as Abarth’s second electric car and initiate its first new model line since the 124 Spider bowed out in 2019.

Fiat and Abarth CEO Olivier François revealed no details of the sporting crossover, but on the subject of the viability of an Abarth 600e, he said: “It’s logical.”

Expected to land in early 2025 (mirroring the gap between the arrivals of the Fiat 500 and its Abarth sibling), the 600e will no doubt bring a significant power boost over the standard Fiat model.

In the 500e, a more responsive motor ramps up power and torque to 152bhp and 173lb ft – increases of 35bhp and 11lb ft over the standard 500. If the 600e gets a similar treatment, it will be armed with around 190bhp and 200lb ft.

Abarth 500e rear quarter driving 2023

Although a crossover, the 600e can still be expected to offer a Scorpion Track driving mode, like its smaller sibling. In its quickest setting, the 600e is likely to be good for a 7.0sec 0-62mph time, which would mirror the lighter 500e.

Abarth has previously said blistering acceleration from rest – a hallmark of electric cars – isn’t the outright aim  of its new-era line-up and it’s instead focusing on better mid-range performance.

Power will be drawn from the same battery as in the regular 600: a 54kWh (51kWh usable) pack. It offers 249 miles of range in the 600, but given the added grunt of the 600e, a real-world range closer to 200 miles is more likely.

What remains to be seen is whether Abarth will add a second motor on the rear axle for improved traction and potency.

Jeep Avenger 4xe concept front driving

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Fellow Stellantis brand Jeep showed a dual-motor concept version of its closely related Avenger crossover at last year’s Paris motor show, suggesting the e-CMP platform can easily accommodate a four-wheel-drive powertrain, but has yet to reveal the performance implications.

Otherwise, the 600e will be marked out by a suite of sporty touches, such as bucket seats, an Alcantara-clad steering wheel, distinctive paint options and bespoke wheel designs.

It is even possible that the 600e will follow its smaller sibling by having a speaker underneath it, producing a faux engine note to accompany acceleration and make it more appealing to petrolheads.



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What's next from Fiat?

Fiat 124 front parked

There will be no more Fiat sports cars and nor will the brand target large or luxury car segments, boss Olivier François has confirmed.

“That is the beauty of [parent firm] Stellantis: we are a house of [14] brands,” he said. That means each brand must have a clear purpose and make money.

“For Fiat, we make money. We are simplicity. We are smaller cars. We are not sports cars. We are not luxury. We are not big cars.”

He added that Fiat won’t launch any cars longer than 4.5 metres – around the size of a Volvo XC40 – or shorter than 3.6 metres (excluding the new Topolino electric quadricycle).

These comments close the door on a successor to the Mazda MX-5-derived Fiat 124 Spider. However, when asked if Abarth could make its own bespoke sports car, François replied: “It may have a space.”

The performance brand, originally a Fiat tuning outfit, hasn’t launched an entirely bespoke model since coming under Fiat ownership in 1971.

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Will Rimell

Will Rimell
Title: Deputy news editor

Will is a journalist with more than eight years experience in roles that range from news reporter to editor. He joined Autocar in 2022 as deputy news editor, moving from a local news background where he cut his teeth.

In his current role, Will’s focus is with Autocar and Autocar Business; he also manages Haymarket's aftermarket publication CAT. Writing is, of course, a big part of his role too. Stories come in many forms, from interviewing top executives, reporting from car launches, and unearthing exclusives.

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catnip 21 August 2023

"It is even possible that the 600e will follow its smaller sibling by having a speaker underneath it, producing a faux engine note to accompany acceleration and make it more appealing to petrolheads".

I'd consider myself a lifelong petrolhead, but these artificial engine noises are just naff. If I was aged 14 they might appeal to me, but has anyone ever asked the adult car buying public if they want this sort of thing?  Embrace the future and just enjoy the alternative advantages a performance electric vehicle can offer such as the smooth, instant, quiet power delivery.

Anton motorhead 22 August 2023
Agree Catnip. Drop the idea of making combustion engine noises in an EV. We neither need nor want it. Sad to read there will never again be a Fiat sportscar. As a young man I was drooling over the 850 spider, the 124 coupe and not least the unobtainable and fashionable Dino Spider. I could not hope to afford one of them, but at least I could become a member of the sporty family by having the sweet 127
catnip 22 August 2023

I had a 128 four door for a number of years, an unremarkable car to the casual observer, but to drive it had that extra 'fizz' that Fiat engineered into their cars in those days to make them so enjoyable to drive.

Anton motorhead 22 August 2023
Oh yes, the 128 was far sportier than its boxy looks suggested. Narrow tyres allowed for squeals in every corner if you so wished without jepoardising fellow drivers, and the engine loved revs. I never drove one with a rev counter, but the engine always sounded up to the game no matter how hard you drove it. A lot of fun at sensible speeds. The 600e will never provide the same amount of thrills, but it sure does look sweet. A little bit more range and faster charging please. Are you listening Stellantis?
MrJ 22 August 2023

Agree completely about noise generators.

My view is that such devices just add weight and complexity to keep simpletons excited.

As for the car, I'll put the 600e on my list when the range goes up.

At present the car can only be a townie's runabout.