FIAT Brand Heritage | The Saga of a Scorpion

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Throughout its history, the Abarth® and FIAT® brand collaboration has produced more than 10,000 race victories, 10 world records and 133 international titles. 1956 FIAT ABARTH Racing Inspired by the racing traditions that made Karl Abarth a success on international racetracks, the 2014 FIAT® 500 Abarth and Abarth Cabrio provide one of the most visceral driving experiences in the industry. ABARTH AND ABARTH CABRIO Learn about the milestones that led to the success of the Scorpion in the timeline below.
  • 1929 – Karl Abarth gets his start racing motorcycles. By 1929, he builds his first motorcycle to bear the Abarth name. In his competitive days, he becomes a five-time European champion.
  • 1930 – A serious accident in Linz, Austria, causes Abarth to abandon solo motorcycle racing. However, he continues to race and build motorcycle sidecars until 1939.
  • 1946 – Abarth is contracted to build his first car, a revolutionary new single-seater named Cisitalia D46. Two models place first and second in the 1946 Brezzi Cup in Turin.
  • 1949 – Karl Abarth starts Abarth & Co., producing aftermarket products for production cars, as well as performance exhaust systems. He wins the Italian 1100 and Formula 2 championships with the first racecar he ever builds – the 204 A Roadster, derived from the FIAT 1100.
  • 1955 – The FIAT Abarth 750, with a body by Bertone, debuts and immediately sets a number of endurance and speed records.
Abarth 750

The FIAT Abarth 750

  • 1958 – Karl Abarth creates the FIAT 500 Abarth at Monza. The car covers a distance of 11,300 miles at an average speed of 30 meters per second, breaking six international records, nearly one every day.
  • 1965 – The ‘60s are a golden age for the Scorpion and the FIAT 595. During this time, the Abarth tallied nearly 900 victories over a seven-year run.

Testing the FIAT 695 Abarth at Monza in race trim, 1966

  • 1979 – Karl Abarth passes away on October 24. The Abarth name continues into the ‘80s with the success of the FIAT Strada Abarth 130TC.
  • 2007 – The Abarth brand is relaunched in Europe.
  • 2011 – The FIAT 500 Abarth is introduced in the U.S. and North American markets. As unique and determined as its creator, the modern Abarth packs a powerful sting.
Staying faithful to the performance principles that made the Abarth name a success, the 2014 FIAT 500 Abarth and Abarth Cabrio continue to embody the brand’s motorsport traditions, including world-class performance and aggressive styling. Make it your race. Build your own FIAT 500 Abarth or Abarth Cabrio at
  • I am as much a fan of FIAT & Abarth heritage as I am the beautiful machines they produce. The announcements of the Abarth involvement with the new FIA F4 Racing, they’re already involved in other racing & rally activities, and the 695 Biposto LE/SE excite me to no end. These activities increase interest. Another announcement sure to raise interest is the automatic transmission Abarth option. While it hasn’t happened yet, I trust FIAT USA will keep the Abarth heritage/history in-mind while introducing changes/options for the North American market… Speed & Sound.

  • willywild

    Racr ready!

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© 2012 FCA US LLC, FIAT, FIAT 500 POP, and ABARTH are registered trademarks used under license by FCA US LLC.

Privacy Policy Copyright Contact Us

© 2012 Chrysler Group LLC, FIAT, FIAT 500 POP, and ABARTH are registered trademarks used under license by Chrysler Group LLC.