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Fiat 500 Abarth Becomes a Watercraft

The Italian automaker makes a splash at the 2013 Vans US Open of Surfing in Huntington Beach, CA.

Toni Avery
Jul 24, 2013
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The Fiat brand is known for unique and creative commercials aimed towards fun loving customers who want a lot of bang for their Italian buck. The Italian automaker recently followed in the tradition of imaginative marketing during a surf competition of all places.

At the 2013 Vans US Open of Surfing in Huntington Beach, CA three Fiat models were presented a-top of high-powered personal watercraft before a sun soaked audience. As stated by Motor Trend's coverage of the spectacle, "Genuine Fiat 500 bodies were grafted on to the watercraft, with all the mechanicals necessary for travel on land removed. Exterior gaps were sealed by foam and the wheels were remounted once the body was water-tight and prepped for ocean duty. Fiberglass pontoons were added for stability, while fins help keep the vehicle agile in the water. The craft's hull is constructed from fiberglass, and Fiat tells us much of the modification work focused on adapting the body to the watercraft, not making it float."

The three models shot through the water in variants that included a 500 Abarth in red, a 500 in orange, and a 500 Cabrio in pearl white.

From live ocean demonstrations to TV ads, 'The Italians are coming' catch phrase is out to make waves:

Fiat 500:

MSRP: $16,000 base

Engine: 1.4-liter MultiAir engine

Performance: 101hp and 98 lb-ft of torque

Fiat 500 Cabrio:

MSRP: $19,500

Engine: 1.4-liter MultiAir engine

Performance: 101hp and 98 lb-ft of torque

Fiat 500 Abarth:

MSRP: $22,700 base

Engine: 1.4-liter 16V Turbocharged MultiAir engine

Performance: 160hp and 170 lb-ft of torque

*Specs provided by Fiat and Motor Trend

2013 Fiat 500 Abarth Front Three Quarters View In Motion 02 Photo 8/11   |   2013 Fiat 500 Abarth
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By Toni Avery
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