Europe’s version of the all-new Mazda MX-5 now has a name, with confirmation the Fiat 124 Spider badge will adorn the new model.
This could be welcome news to fans of the original Fiat 124 Sport Spider, meaning it gets the retro nod rather than Fiat’s Barchetta, and more good news could come in the form of an Abarth version down the track.
Conflicting reports have suggested the roadster may have been an Abarth model only, or that both Fiat and Abarth versions will be available.
Mr Marchionne reportedly confirmed the new name during an interview at the Geneva Motor Show, telling the UK’s Auto Express “there you go, a world class premiere right in this room!”.
While both the Mazda and Fiat versions will be built in Japan, the latter will use its own turbocharged engines in place of Mazda’s naturally-aspirated 1.5 and 2.0 litre units (for the Australian market).
In this respect, FCA’s 1.4 litre MultiAir engine from the Abarth 595, the 1.7 litre turbocharged engine from the Alfa Romeo Giulietta or even the 900cc TwinAir from the Fiat 500 are all possibilities.
The MX-5 was revealed midway through last year, showing an evolved look from Mazda’s ‘Kodo’ design language.
Rumours suggest the Fiat version will adopt a more retro look in honour of its newly-confirmed name, taking styling cues from the original Fiat 124 which dates back to the mid-1960s.
An official launch is pencilled in for early 2016, before sales in European markets begin midway through the year.
Rendering, top of page, by Theophilus Chin
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