The new Abarth & C Company will be lead by Managing Director Luca De Meo and will operate both in the racing world – with rallies, single-brand trophies and cars prepared for private customers – and in the commercial field, with tuning kits and merchandising activities.
Fiat Grande Punto Abarth Preview
The Grande Punto Abarth gives a preview of the production model that will be marketed in September, to enhance the sporty, youthful positioning of the Grande Punto.
The car on show in Geneva is equipped with a 1.4 Turbo gasoline engine that delivers 150 bhp at 5500 rpm, boosted to 155 bhp by the adoption of 98 RON petrol.
This is a revival of a tradition from the past: for example, the Fiat 500 of 1958 delivered 13 bhp at 4000 rpm with a top speed of 85 km/h, while the Fiat 500 Abarth of the same year delivered 26 bhp at 5000 rpm and a top speed of 118 km/h.
The Grande Punto Abarth aims to revive the feats of these entertaining performance cars, offering young drivers in particular an opportunity to enter the racing world in complete safety and at an accessible price.
Fiat Grande Punto Abarth S2000
It was designed for racing stables, which the Fiat Racing Department will be entering in the 2007 Italian Rally Championship.
Powered by a 2000 cc aspirated engine that delivers 270 bhp, with 4-wheel drive, the new Grande Punto Abarth S2000 is heir to the version that took the 2006 Italian Rally Championship title with Paolo Andreucci and Anna Andreussi, winning 7 of the 11 races on the programme.
On the international scene, the Grande Punto Abarth S2000 will compete in the IRC (Intercontinental Rally Challenge).
Abarth & C. was founded in 1949 by Carlo Abarth, born in Vienna in 1908, who had became an Italian citizen in 1945 when he moved to Merano.
Abarth had the brilliant idea of combining racing activities with products for the mass market, and he began to build his famous conversion kits for standard production cars.
The success of the brand in the minds of motoring fans was constant, and became almost overwhelming as time passed, reaching its peak in the late 1950s and throughout the 1960s.
In 1958 Abarth achieved a masterpiece on the new Fiat 500, completely transforming the small runabout, and highlighting its potential.
That same year the partnership with Fiat was stepped up, and Fiat undertook to reward Abarth financially on the basis of the number of victories and records that the stable notched up.
This agreement was behind the amazing list of victories in the coming years: 10 world records, 133 international records and over 10,000 victories on the track.
From 1971 Abarth became part of Fiat Auto, and the last car on whose development the founder of the brand collaborated actively was the A112 Abarth.
During the 1980s, the story continued with other famous cars such as the Fiat 131 Abarth which won the world rally championship, and the Ritmo Abarth.
Carlo Abarth died on October 24, 1979, under his birth sign: Scorpion, of course.
The new Scorpion logo
|Above: the former Abarth logo (left) and the revised one (right)|
As part of the modernization process
which saw the facelift of Fiat’s and – more recently – Lancia’s logos, and to underline the rebirth of the brand, the original Abarth logo was revised.
The new logo is more aggressive with new black colouring and the addition of very clear, well defined graphic elements, with a tridimensional look.
The lettering remains very close to the original typeface, but is more distinctive, while the small tricolour strip (tag) telling that the brand is ‘Made in Italy’, without weighing down the overall impression.
The shield structure, a symbol linked to the concept of victory, and the positioning of the red/yellow colours have also been modified to modernise the identity while respecting the values of tradition.