Fiat 124 Spider - best sports cars
The Italian firm is back in the small sports car business, courtesy of Mazda
Sports cars don't come much purer than the front-engined, rear-wheel drive, open-top, two-seater, and Fiat has a history of building these kind of models. So when it came time to produce a spiritual successor to the classic 124 Spider, it turned to another car maker that's already building its own fun two-seater.
The Mazda MX-5 is a modern-day classic, and its layout perfectly suits the 124 Spider philosophy. So, Fiat took the MX-5, reprofiled the nose and tail, stuck its own 1.4-litre turbocharged engine under the bonnet, and off the new 124 Spider went.
The turbo engine gives the 124 Spider enough of a character change to separate it from the MX-5 - even if the visual changes don't, and the mid-range torque means the Spider feels muscular compared to the high-revving MX-5.
And if you want more power, there's always the Abarth version, which is tuned to 168bhp and gets some sporty visual updates and a rorty exhaust note.
Best sports cars
- 11. McLaren 570S'Entry level' McLaren is still a sensational piece of sports car engineering that entertains in spades
- 22. Mazda MX-5It's a modern-day classic that's had 25 years of development under its belt to make it one of the most fun cars on sale
- 33. Porsche 911 Carrera GTSThe Carrera GTS combines the best bits of the standard Carrera and the track-focused 911 GT3
- 44. BMW M4 Competition PackAdding the Competition Pack to the M4 Coupe transforms it into a focused sports machine
- 55. Mercedes-AMG C63 CoupeBig twin-turbo V8 and a rear-drive chassis turn elegant coupe into a total headbanger
- 66. Audi RS 5The latest RS 5 delivers all-weather performance in a subtly aggressive package
- 77. Porsche 718 Cayman/BoxsterMid-engined Porsche twins are driver's cars honed to perfection, whichever version you choose
- 88. Fiat 124 Spider - currently readingThe Italian firm is back in the small sports car business, courtesy of Mazda
- 99. Nissan GT-RJapanese coupe is a showcase for what can be done if you throw electronic wizardry at the sports car philosophy