Abarth & C. S.p.A. is an Italian racing car and road car maker founded by Italo-Austrian Carlo Abarth in 1949.
Abarth & C. S.p.A. is a fully-owned subsidiary of FCA Italy S.p.A. (formerly Fiat Group Automobiles S.p.A.), the subsidiary of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (formerly of Fiat S.p.A.) that controls its European automotive production activities. Its logo is a shield with a stylized scorpion on a yellow and red background.
Carlo sold Abarth to Fiat on 31 July 1971. The acquisition was not made public until 15 October. As Fiat was not interested in the Reparto Corse racing operations, these were taken over by Enzo Osella. Osella obtained cars, spares, technicians and drivers (amongst them Arturo Merzario), and continued the racing activity founding the Osella racing team. Thus ended for Abarth the days of sport prototype and hill climb racing.
Under Fiat ownership, Abarth became the Fiat Group's racing department, managed by engine designer Aurelio Lampredi. Abarth prepared Fiat's rally cars, including the Fiat 124 Abarth Rally and 131 Abarth. In December 1977, in advance of the 1978 racing season, the beforehand competing Abarth and Squadra Corse Lancia factory racing operations were merged by Fiat into a single entity named EASA (Ente per l'Attività Sportiva Automobilistica, Organization for Car Sports Racing Activities). Cesare Fiorio (previously in charge of the Lancia rally team) was appointed director, while Daniele Audetto was sporting director; the EASA headquarters were set up in Abarth's Corso Marche (Turin) offices. The combined racing department developed the Lancia Beta Montecarlo Turbo Group 5 racing car which won the 1980 World Championship for Makes and the 1981 World Endurance Championship of Makes. It also created the Lancia Rally 037 Group B rally car which won for Lancia the 1983 World Manufacturers' Championship).
On 1 October 1981, Abarth & C. ceased to exist and was replaced by Fiat Auto Gestione Sportiva, a division of the parent company specialized in the management of racing programmes that would remain in operation through to the end of 1999, when it changed to Fiat Auto Corse S.p.A.
Some commercial models built by Fiat or its subsidiaries Lancia and Autobianchi were co-branded Abarth, including the Autobianchi A112 Abarth, a lightweight and inexpensive "boy racer". A112 Abarth was introduced with a 58HP engine, soon followed by a 70HP one, and a specific "A112 Abarth trophy" was run from 1977 to 1984.
On 1 February 2007 Abarth was re-established as an independent unit with the launch of the current company, Abarth & C. S.p.a., controlled 100% by Fiat Group Automobiles S.p.A., the subsidiary of Fiat S.p.A. dealing with the production and selling of passenger cars and light commercial vehicles.
The first models launched were the Abarth Grande Punto and the Abarth Grande Punto S2000. The brand is based in the Officine 83, part of the old Mirafiori engineering plant. The CEO as of 2011 is Harald Wester.
In 2015, Abarth's parent company was renamed FCA Italy S.p.A., reflecting the incorporation of Fiat S.p.A. into Fiat Chrysler Automobiles that took place in the previous months.
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Asphalt 7: Heat
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