As the company that Carlo Abarth moves into its 50th year, Influx looks at the man and his legacy.
Born 1908 in Vienna, Karl Abarth was reincarnated in post war Italy as Carlo, the true renaissance man of world motoring. Sportsman, engineer and businessman ‘The Magician’ excelled in every aspect of the car industry – from performance exhaust systems, innovative motorcycle racing technologies (see the flexible sidecar setup he invented below) to full ground up builds. If he launched his business now he’d be called an artisan, an indie savant making bespoke vehicles and collaborating with, but never becoming absorbed fully by, the mainstream motoring industry. By the time of his death in 1979 Mr Abarth had notched up ten world records, built and sold a successful automotive business and left a legacy of vehicles still in production today.
"People often look towards the stars and dream.
There’s something about looking up to those twinkling little lights that fills us with wonder and ambition, and this in turn drives us to pursue our goals. In Carlo Abarth’s "
"In the last of this month's Abarth niceness, we wanted to share what we reckon is perhaps a quintessential Abarth classic - the Abarth 1000 OTR 'Radiale'.
The car is obviously based on Fiat's 850 coupé. But this car Abarth came with "
Something about Abarth's Lunacy that reached its heights in the little 695 carlo converted Fiat from the sixties. Any manufacturer who would strap an oversize engine into a production car and solve the cooling issue by leaving the boot open is "
The Abarth badge, all Scorpions, proletarian pomp and red stripes, is sixty this year.
Having found new life in the tuned version of Fiat's Giugiaro-penned Grande Punto and the coolest little kid on the block the 500, we thought it about "
"When Abarth released their tweaked version of the hugely successful Fiat 500 prodigy we were banging their doors down to have a crack at the little whip.
It was actually the 'Essesse' version that we ended up ragging round the hills "
"The Vauxhall Viva is one of the earliest cars I can remember.
I recall sitting snot-nosed in my neighbour’s HC Viva on the way to nursery. I was also slightly jealous because the saloon looked cooler than my dad’"
"There’s never been a better time to go looking for a retro ride.
Ducati will happily sell you a Scrambler, BMW has the eye-swivelling R Nine T range and Triumph… well, Triumph has more old-school options than most manufacturers "
""I got over the wall first time".
Not something you expect to hear from a racing driver whilst talking about their achievements to date, but then Charlie Martin is a racer like no other.
The wall in question, you'll be "
"“Look!”, they shouted, as a thunderous roar rasped above the forest, cutting through the mist and skimming the treetops like a stone across water.
A little girl desperately warning her father, “It’s going to crash, it’s going to "