With the Fiat 500 Abarth bringing its fury back to North America, this particular find was a hard one to pass up. Originally founded by Carlo Abarth in 1949, their mission was simple; to build cars and complementary aggregates for sport and racing. Carlo had been building and racing motorcycles since his late teens, and at age 41 there was no shaking the fact that racing was in his blood.
After spending the first handful of years dabbling with the likes of , , and , Carlo spotted a niche that needed to be filled. The 1955 Fiat 600 had just arrived and he immediately saw an opportunity to create small affordable sports cars. From his first Fiat Abarth 750 Zagato the relationship with Fiat was cemented, and although the company was merged with Fiat in 1971 the name and the legend lives on to this day.
The Abarth TC, or `Turismo Competizione' made its way into the European Touring Car Championship by the mid-60s. It was one of the first cars to homologate a 5-speed gearbox as well as front and rear disc brakes, and although the open engine compartment lid was claimed to be used for engine cooling, it also provided a significant aerodynamic advantage over the competition. After the strong success of the 850 cc version, moved on to up the displacement to 1050 cc, allowing it to do battle with the already notorious .
This particular Abarth isn't an all-original example by any stretch, but after its discovery back in 1997, its previous owner set out on a mission to restore it, spending 2 years seeking out the appropriate period-correct parts. It has since raced in a series of HSR and VARA events, earning itself a reputation as the fastest Berlina Corsa on the West Coast.
Having traded hands at Bonhams' 2012 Scottsdale auction for $46,800 including commissions, this TC has since been fitted with a brand new Abarth 1050 cc crate engine good for a solid 110 bhp at its 8000 rpm redline. Aside from the engine it is said to be in the same condition as it was when sold in January, with no racing on the clock since the install. This is not a show car by any stretch, as it has some of the expected wear and tear of a car that's been racing, but it's certainly up to the task of fulfilling that lifelong dream of playing out David vs. Goliath battles on your local race track.