What is it like on the inside?
If you thought the driving experience was a bit of a throwback, this is where the 595 really starts to feel its age. The interior has barely been updated since its launch in 2008 and it severely lags behind rivals.
The Competizione starts at just over £23,000 – meaning it’s remarkably similar in price to the fully-digital Hyundai i20N. All 595s make do with an ancient-feeling seven-inch touchscreen for infotainment and nav duties. It’s slow to react and fiddly to use – the touchscreen game has moved on and Abarth hasn’t kept up. Thankfully you do get Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
The dials are also housed in a seven-inch screen although this one is much more successful. They’re easy to read and there’s a more focussed view in sport mode.
Sports seats are standard on the base-spec 595 and the Turismo, whilst the Competizione gets lovely Sabelt bucket seats and loads of Alcantara (the esseesse ups the ante further with carbon Sabelt seats and red belts). Sadly there’s no height adjustment, meaning you sit on top of the 595 rather than in it. Taller drivers will be left with cramped knees while still reaching for the wheel.
This is still an old combustion-engined Fiat 500 at heart too, so you get two very cramped back seats and a teeny 185-litre boot. Not the most practical.