1955 Abarth 207
- Year of manufacture1955
- Car typeOther
- Lot number052
- Exterior colourOther
John Bentley, New York (acquired new in 1955)
Max Goldman Jr., US (acquired from the above in 1956)
George Simmons, US (acquired by 1986)
Courtney Whitlock, Springfield, Missouri (acquired by 1990)
Private Collection, California (acquired from the above circa 2010)
Current Owner (acquired from the above)
12 Hours of Sebring, 1955, Bentley/McGee, No. 80 (DSQ)
SCCA Regional Thompson, 1955, Bentley, No. 77 (1st Place)
SCCA Preliminary Cumberland, 1955, Bentley, No. 77 (10th Place)
SCCA National Cumberland, 1955, Bentley, No. 77 (DNF)
SCCA National Thompson, 1955, Bentley, No. 112 (3rd Place)
Watkins Glen Grand Prix, 1955, Bentley, No. 77 (14th Place)
4 Hours of Road America, 1956, Bentley/Knoll, No. 18 (DNF)
Colorado Grand, 2018
Autocar, February 1955, “An Abarth Spyder”
Autocar, April 1955
Motor Sports, July 1955
Road & Track, May 1955, “A New Mount is Born,” by John Franklin Fellows
Tuner Carlo Abarth was already famous for his high-performance contributions to Cisitalia, Fiat, Ferrari, and Porsche before embarking on production of the first of his own serial-produced sports racers, the 207/A. At the behest of importer Tony Pompeo, who perceived a market in the US for an 1100 cc sports car, Abarth would go on to produce approximately 10 of these radically styled racers, beginning with the example shown here.
Utilizing highly tuned mechanicals from a Fiat 1100 and a unique sheet-steel platform chassis, Abarth contracted the newly incorporated Carrozzeria Boano of Turin to craft the aluminum coachwork. Using a striking asymmetrical design penned by Giovanni Michelotti, the spider departed from styling norms of the period with knife-edged aerodynamics and low-slung flanks. A visual sensation in its day, it remains one of the most beautiful designs ever applied to a sports racing car.
Chassis 001 was first sold to famed automotive journalist John Bentley, who promptly entered the car in the 1955 12 Hours of Sebring with co-driver Jim McGee. Bentley later campaigned the 207/A at SCCA races at Thompson and Watkins Glen in 1955, and notably achieved a top speed record at Daytona Beach that same year. The Abarth’s second owner, Max Goldman Jr., raced 001 at events throughout the Midwest during the late 1950s, and it is believed that the car continued to race on the West Coast in the hands of subsequent owners.
In 1986, the 207/A returned to the track, taking part in historic races with both George Simmons and later Courtney Whitlock. Jim Proffit restored the car for Mr. Whitlock before it attended numerous historic motor sports and concours events between 2004 and 2010. The next owner had Epifani Restorations of Berkeley, California, perform an exhaustive restoration of the mechanical systems including rebuilding the engine, transmission, brakes, and differential while applying a finished aesthetic in keeping with the car’s historical presence.
The current owner, a noted East Coast collector with a passion for coachbuilt Italian sports cars, has since conducted a cosmetic restoration that has returned the beautiful Abarth to its original splendor. Since this work was carried out, the 207/A has been shown on rare occasions and has successfully completed the 2018 Colorado Grand, a 1,000-mile tour through the Rocky Mountains.
Thoroughly prepared, historically significant, and undeniably beautiful, this first 207/A electrified the world of sports car racing when new, and now offers a rare opportunity as an exciting event entrant in prestigious races, tours, and concours worldwide. A magnificent testament to Carlo Abarth’s genius, and a brilliant example of 1950s Italian design, this marvelous automobile is a thoroughbred sports car sure to appeal to the connoisseur.