We've long known the Fiat 500 Abarth was coming to the U.S. We've also known it would be on sale in the first quarter of 2012. What we didn't know, until today, was when it would first make its official debut in the U.S. Answer? The 2011 Los Angeles Auto Show.

According to FiatAmerica's official Twitter account, "From our friends FIAT USA - The FIAT 500 Abarth will be officially unveiled at this year's LA Auto Show. Get excited, get very excited!!" While we might not require two exclamation points and needless repetition, we're pretty stoked about the Abarth 500's arrival.

Why? Because it's expected to come packing a 135-horsepower turbocharged 1.4-liter T-Jet engine under its tiny little hood. With just 2,350 pounds or so of curb weight to drag around and some pretty sporty handling--if not steering, which feels a bit like a dumptruck operated by a voice-activated relay system--we expect the pint-sized sport hatch to be pretty darned fun.

What do you think of the Abarth 500? Would you drop your coin--presumably something north of the $15,500 price of the standard Prima Edizione model? Or would you rather hold out for a 180-horsepower Fiesta ST?