If I could describe this car in one word: fun.
It’s the perfect roadtrip car for Fuerteventura (more details on the actual roadtrip in a seperate post). It’s a joyful roadster made for a sexy, wind–in–your-hair ride.
It’s a revival of the 1960s/70s model, redesigned using elements of the very popular Mazda MX-5 Miata.
This car does a fantastic job if you want to add a bit of edge to your sunny roadtrip. It’s very tempting to push down the accelerator, especially in the Abarth version. Though I'm personally a big fan of hovering around 60km/h with the top off, so I can take in the views.
On that note, I did a test-race on the local motorway, with the roof down, and the Abarth is a smooth operator, especially considering it’s price range. No, it’s not as finessed as a Porsche. The accelerator lacks the responsiveness of higher end sports cars. But I’d still give it 8/10 for the exhaust sound effects.
This car is comfortable, cosy and fairly basic on the inside. But it does the job. After all, you’re driving it for the sun-bathing, not for the extra infotainment on board.
As for the surfing board… you just gotta figure out how to hold it outside ;) There's a small place for a bag or two at the back, but don’t overpack.
If you fancy a easy cruise, I think it’s an experience worth the 220euro (roughly £200) price tag for a long weekend hire , 4 days (that’s for the basic Classica version, add another 100euro for the Abarth). I bet prices will go steeply up once the Covid pandemic is over.. either way, decide for yourself if you want to pay the price for a fancy hair-dryer. The rental still works out cheaper than a day of a kite-surfing course.
Some numbers : the car comes standard with a 1.4-litre MultiAir Turbo four-cylinder, giving you 138 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque, while the Abarth gets you 164 hp (though feels more than that in real life !) and 184 lb-ft of torque. Goes to a 100km/h in just under 7 seconds in the Abarth, around 7.5 for the other models.
If you’ve had too many sangrias and are thinking of buying one, the Abarth version will set you back at least £30,000, while the Classica version costs just under £24,000 (unless 2021 pricing has changed dramatically).
I’d say instead of splurging your deposit money for a flat in Fuerte, I recommend simply renting it out for a few days. ‘Cicar’ in Corralejo is great, they are located just in the port.
Overall a great holiday roadster, that is just a step down from the good, old classic Miata ;-) I’d still take a battered 1980s Toyota for some proper racing, but the Fiat 124 Spider is a solid holiday car and I’m giving it a 8/10 (9/10 for the Abarth)