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Discussion Starter #1
Here is a picture. Same kind of armrest you will find in many econoboxes (though with panache).
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
it is not a literal ashtray

In the picture, you see three red objects. Two of them are seats, and the third is the passenger side armrest, below the door handle.

Now imagine you are sitting in the passenger seat, and the car is traveling around a hairpin turn, to the left. What would you grab onto? The door handle is probably not a good option.

My point is that the only way you could grip the door, is to stick four fingers into the "ashtray-shaped" hole in the armrest. Hopefully if you did that, someone has not been using it as an ashtray!

This is okay, I still want the car, but I am comparing this feature to my current VW, which has a handle molded into the ends of the armrests, which is even more important for the driver.
 

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I am not too concerned with the arm rests, I bet there are some holy **** handles to hold on to when I tear through the turns with the 500. Even the crappiest cars have them, so I am sure the 500 will too.
 

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In the picture, you see three red objects. Two of them are seats, and the third is the passenger side armrest, below the door handle.

Now imagine you are sitting in the passenger seat, and the car is traveling around a hairpin turn, to the left. What would you grab onto? The door handle is probably not a good option.

My point is that the only way you could grip the door, is to stick four fingers into the "ashtray-shaped" hole in the armrest. Hopefully if you did that, someone has not been using it as an ashtray!

This is okay, I still want the car, but I am comparing this feature to my current VW, which has a handle molded into the ends of the armrests, which is even more important for the driver.
Coming from experience, the "oh ****" bars are way better in keeping you steady than the armrest. I think the armrest should only be there for comfort and not a means to keep you in place. Some cars have the bar built into the door.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Glad we have that settled

Click to see the armrest...
Thanks for the help. I think possibly some people were resisting what seemed like a negative comment about the 500. Not so- I am a big fan already, and I have never actually seen one in the sheet metal. I just hope we don't overestimate what we are going to get, that has happened before (remember the Dodge Neon?).

As it stands now, I would not be willing to shell out extra dollars for an Abarth version. I am not wealthy, and I don't believe *yet* that it is really a high performance car. So I look at certain features to decide what is the design narrative of a car. Like when the Lexus IS300 first came out, they did not offer a manual transmission. That was case closed, I don't believe it's a serious sports car.
 

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The armrest does fit the overall design pretty good. I was expecting a better center console though. Like another armrest on the center console. Instead theres just a gap there.
 

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As it stands now, I would not be willing to shell out extra dollars for an Abarth version. I am not wealthy, and I don't believe *yet* that it is really a high performance car. So I look at certain features to decide what is the design narrative of a car. Like when the Lexus IS300 first came out, they did not offer a manual transmission. That was case closed, I don't believe it's a serious sports car.
Let me add my 2¢...

I am holding out for an Abarth because I want this cute car in the most powerful form it comes in, and it is the only model I will accept.

Even the Abarth is going to be only a $20k car, and from my point of view, that makes it one extremely non-expensive cars!

Not today, not tomorrow, not ever will an Abarth version of a Fiat 500 be a serious sportscar. A sportscar is much more than just additional power, it's a hot 2-seater. Ferrari makes sportscars, Porsche makes sportscars, the Corvette is a sportscar, the Fiat 500 is not a sportscar regardless of the Abarth additions and should not be critiqued against true sportscars.

What the Abarth is though, is an extra dose of sporty and fun to an already good econobox 3-door hatchback. A MINI John Cooper Works is in the same class, if Honda would make the CR-Z in Si or Type-R form with a decent engine it too could be in the same class. These types of cars are meant to be functional and practical, and have a bit more power for the people who like that kind of thing. And I'm one of those people!

It's totally fine you don't want an Abarth! It's totally fine there are lots and lots of people out there who are going to be 100% happy with their non Abarth versions, but, what makes this car awesome is because Fiat has had the vision to make a really sporty version, because that is exactly what lots of other people want.

Seriously, these Abarth numbers are not bad at all

FIAT 500 ABARTH
170 HP @ 6,750
170 FT-LBS @3,000
2,363
13.90 lbs per hp
13.90 lbs per ft-lb

MINI JCW
208 HP @ 6,000
192 FT-LBS @ 1,850
2,701
12.98 lbs per hp
14.06 lbs per ft-lb

S2000
240 HP @ 8,300
153 FT-LBS @ 7,500 rpm
2,733
11.38 lbs per hp
17.86 lbs per ft-lb

CR-Z
122 HP @ 6000
128 FT-LBS @ 1,750
2,650
21.72 lbs per hp
20.70 lbs per ft-lb

1990 CRX
108 HP @ 6,000
100 FT-LBS @ 5,000
2,108
19.52 lbs per hp
21.08 lbs per ft-lb
 

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Back to topic....

To me the arm rest is the thing on top of the center console that lies between the two front seat backs. For me this is going to be a critical must have, even if I have to get some kind of universal kind and make it fit somehow, although I hope Fiat makes it as an option someday.

For me the arm rest is less about having a place to rest my elbow, it is more about creating some extra storage space within an already small little cabin.
 

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Abarth is more than likely to be closer to $30000us than $20000us by the time it gets here. It is close to that now in some parts of Europe.
 

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Well we shall see, for me though $25k would be as high as I would go
If it was more than that I would buy the Honda CR-Z as they are planning a 1.6 turbo version and if that is done right, it would be worth $30k
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Now that they added a center armrest, makes me feel like Fiat responded to my comment! It will do.

Although it won't be as good for gripping like my VW. I just love punking those SUV's that tailgate me into the 25 mph exit, when I already have the cruise set for 42!
 
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