SOURCE Chrysler Group LLC
AUBURN HILLS, Mich., June 23, 2014 /PRNewswire/ --
The high-performance 2015 Fiat 500 Abarth and Abarth Cabrio, now offering an optional six-speed automatic transmission, begins production today at Toluca Assembly Plant in Toluca, Mexico.
The Abarth's optional six-speed automatic transmission, new for 2015, is mated to the track-proven 1.4-liter MultiAir Turbo engine to deliver up to 183 ft.-lb. of torque and 157 horsepower.
To ensure the 2015 Fiat 500 Abarth and Abarth Cabrio remain true to their high-performance and track-ready heritage, the six-speed automatic transmission has been reinforced with more clutch plates and a more robust heat treatment to allow for higher torque capability. The Sport mode calibration allows for an even more engaged driving experience with special features such as fuel-cut upshifts, rev-matching downshifts, brake-assist downshifts, corner gear hold and fast-off gear hold, as well as a more aggressive pedal map.
"Accessible performance has always been a hallmark of the Abarth name," said Jason Stoicevich, Head of FIAT Brand for North America, Chrysler Group LLC. "Now, with the addition of an optional automatic transmission, an entirely new group of customers will be able to experience the thrill of driving the Fiat 500 Abarth lineup. Fiat 500 Abarth sales increased more than 16 percent during this year, and we expect this sales success to continue with the launch of this new automatic transmission."
Production also begins today for the 2015 Fiat 500 Turbo, which features an optional automatic transmission for this model year. The full 2015 Fiat 500 lineup, with interior updates such as an innovative instrument panel with a 7-inch high-definition color display, will arrive at FIAT studios later this summer.
FIAT brand sales were up 18 percent in May, its best ever monthly sales since the brand returned to the U.S. market in 2011. It was the brand's sixth-consecutive month of year-over-year sales gains. The Fiat 500 Abarth Cabrio, with its 66 percent year-over-year increase, recorded the largest percentage sales gain of any Fiat 500 model in May.
About FIAT Brand
The FIAT brand stands for discovery through passionate self-expression. It encourages people to be in charge of their lives, live confidently and celebrate the smallest of things with infectious excitement. That philosophy is embodied by the North American introduction of the iconic Fiat 500 or Cinquecento – a small car that lives big. Italian at heart and rooted in a rich heritage, the 500 is synonymous with modern, simple design blending form, function and a pride of ownership that is genuine.
Reminiscent of the original 1957 Cinquecento, the Fiat 500 and Fiat 500c (Cabrio) build on the vehicle's global popularity. Since its launch in 2007, more than 1,000,000 Fiat 500 vehicles have been sold in more than 100 countries around the world. In addition to success on the sales front, the Fiat 500 has earned more than 80 international awards.
In North America, the FIAT brand portfolio continues to expand with the introduction of the high-performance Fiat 500 Abarth and Abarth Cabrio, the fully electric Fiat 500e and the Fiat 500L, an all-new five-passenger model that expands FIAT's brand style and efficiency into the growing B-segment.
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