The Fiat 124 Spider may have just made its debut at the 2015 L.A. Auto Show, but the Italian automaker already has plans to take it racing.
According to a report from PistonHeads, Abarth will ready a race version of the 124 to compete in a new sports car category in World Rally Championship (WRC) around 2017, the same time the 124 Abarth model will go on sale.
Rumor has it that the Abarth version of the 124 Spider will actually use different sheetmetal rather than just more aggressive styling to set it apart from its Fiat counterpart. Considering the Fiat 124 Spider packs 160 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque, don’t be surprised if the hotter Abarth version nears the 200-hp mark when it debuts.
Abarth will also reportedly offer a 124 Spider variant with a matte black hood and hardtop, paying homage to the Abarth-tuned 124 Stradale homologation car built in the early 1970s to satisfy entry requirements for the 124 rally car.
Fiat hasn’t competed in world rallying since the late 1970s and early 1980s, when it won WRC three times with the iconic 131 Abarth.
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