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Fiat 124 Spider not just a “badge-engineered” MX-5

The upcoming Fiat 124 Spider is not merely a badge-engineered Mazda MX-5, according to the boss. Speaking at the launch of the new Fiat 500X in Sydney yesterday, Pat Dougherty said the perception that the 124 Spider is just an MX-5 in a different guise is not true.

“I think the story is just a little bit different,” Dougherty said.

“The story was that Mazda wanted to come to market with an MX-5 and we wanted to come to market with a 124 Spider and what happened was we were talking with Mazda, and we obviously have a decent relationship with them and have done things in the past with them, and the opportunity was there and we said ok let’s do something together.”

According to Dougherty the deal was beneficial for both companies to satisfy volume requirements.

“I don’t think as a single product out of their plant, it necessarily said they have enough volume to make it make sense so we did a joint development and our development has different sheet metal, different powertrains, different look and feel and it’s not like we just badge-engineered the vehicle. When they designed that car, they hadn’t seen the Mazda, every panel on the outside is different.”

Published: Wednesday, December 2, 2015

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