THEY'LL hear you coming if you choose one of the new versions of the latest Abarth 595 - the hotter spin-off from the little Fiat 500.
Push the Sport button on the 595 Competizione and Trofeo versions of the newly revised Abarth 595 range and it opens a valve in the exhaust allowing the driver to choose, says the car's maker "a more composed engine sound or a tougher, sportier - and more traditionally Abarth - roar."
Available in a choice of hatchback or convertible, the new 595 range features four versions - 595, 595 Trofeo, 595 Turismo and 595 Competizione. All Abarth 595 models come with a 1.4 litre petrol engine with power levels ranging from 145hp to 180hp.
The Abarth 595 stands out as a sporting miniature with features such as front end with large air scoop, pronounced diffusor on the rear bumper, 16-inch alloy wheels and a performance feel to the dashboard.
All versions of the 1.4 T-jet engine in the 595 range are Euro 6D-TEMP compliant. As standard, all variants are paired with a mechanical five-speed gearbox but they can be optionally fitted with an Abarth robotised sequential gearbox with shift paddles.
The 595 is Abarth's entry-level model - priced from £15,980 - and has a flat-bottom steering wheel with a satin chrome centre stripe. A Sport button adjusts maximum torque output, the power steering and accelerator pedal settings. The braking system is specific to Abarth, with disc brakes all round.
The 595 Trofeo is the special series filled with plenty of performance-oriented equipment, such as Abarth Telemetry to monitor performance at all times and Koni rear suspension with Frequency Selective Damping (FSD) technology to optimise the driving experience and ensure greater road-holding, handling and stability.
The Abarth 595 range then moves up through Trofeo and Tourismo versons to the 595 Competizione, topping out with the £24,630 180hp model.
It now comes fitted with the new Active Record Monza exhaust as standard, which can also be equipped with an optional mechanical self-locking differential to improve the traction in fast driving conditions.
The Abarth 595 Competizione accelerates from zero to 62mph in 6.7 seconds and uses a Brembo braking system with four-piston aluminium monobloc fixed callipers.