1959 Fiat Abarth
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Carlo Abarth’s company found its key growth opportunity with the launch of the Fiat 600 in 1955. Abarth developed a 750-cubic centimetre version of the 633-cubic centimetre engine, selling derivazione, or “derivation”, kits for dealers and garages to fit into stock 600s. In addition, he built complete cars in his factory for street and competition use. The best known of these were sleek, lightweight Zagato-bodied cars.
Making its début at the 1955 Turin Auto Show, the Fiat 600 Derivazione 750 Abarth Zagato was propelled into the racing world in 1956. Success came rapidly in a variety of European events, and it made an unmistakable statement when it swept the first three places in the 750-cubic centimetre class at the 1957 Mille Miglia. Across the Atlantic, the 750GT, nicknamed the “Double Bubble” for the distinctive roof humps, were equally successful on the U.S. circuits.
This 1959 Fiat Abarth 750 Zagato was purchased by the vendor in the Netherlands as a sound base project. The Zagato was then shipped to Australia and underwent a 4-year complete restoration. The aluminium body was stripped to bare metal, coated and primed for paint. The evocative blue paint finish is now in concours condition. The transaxle, complete with Abarth tags and original Abarth R/P, was rebuilt with new bearings and mated to a freshly rebuilt 843cc engine. A new Abarth exhaust and sump were also fitted and the restoration was finished beautifully with top grade carpets and new re-trimmed seats. Be under no illusion, this car has undergone a full nut and bolt restoration to show winning standard. The paintwork, engine bay, interior and underside are hard to fault.
Many rare original features can be seen on this double-bubble, including the original gauges, steering wheel and even the 12" vented steel wheels and NOS spinners. All original badges, alloy body trim and bumpers are present and it is a joy to behold. Welcomed at a wide range of international events, this little car is listed in the DeBoer Abarth registry. These giant-killers rarely come up for public sale, are highly prized by Abarth collectors and this example represents a true turn-key proposition.