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In-depth reviews

Fiat 124 Spider convertible (2016-2019) - Reliability & safety

Italian design flair and Japanese dependability should make the Fiat 124 Spider a safe and reliable car

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Reliability & safety Rating

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It’s too soon to say how reliable the Fiat 124 Spider will be, as it’s so new. The signs, however, are promising: Because it’s built in Japan under Mazda’s stewardship, the 124 Spider is likely to benefit from the reliability and build quality Mazda has developed a reputation for over the years.

Fiat 124 Spider reliability

While there’s limited information about how reliable the 124 Spider will be, if history’s anything to go by, it should be dependable. The previous generation of the Mazda MX-5 built up a reputation for being a reliable car that was economical to repair when it did go wrong, and it’s likely that as the 124 Spider is based on the new MX-5, it should share those characteristics.

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While Fiat’s 23rd place out of 26 manufacturers in our 2018 Driver Power customer satisfaction survey was underwhelming, Mazda’s ninth-place finish was more reassuring. The new MX-5 on which the 124 Spider is based came 13th out of 75 cars too, scoring well in the reliability and build quality category.

Safety

Again, it’s necessary to turn to the Mazda MX-5 to gauge the Fiat 124 Spider’s safety, but the signs are encouraging. While the latest MX-5’s four out of five stars in its Euro NCAP safety tests may seem to lag behind rivals, these tests were upgraded and made stricter last year

The MX-5’s 84% score for adult-occupant protection and 80% for child-occupant protection are encouraging. A 93% pedestrian-protection score is even more impressive; this was partly due to a clever ‘active’ bonnet that rises up in an accident, protecting pedestrians from hitting the engine underneath. All 124 Spiders come with electronic stability control, traction control and rollover protection as standard.

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Richard is a former editor of Carbuyer, as well as sister site DrivingElectric.com, and he's now Deputy Editor at Auto Express. Having spent a decade working in the automotive industry, he understands exactly what makes new car buyers tick.

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