Official: Abarth marks 50 years of 595 with special edition Fiat 500

Filed under: Frankfurt Motor Show, Performance, Europe, Hatchback, Fiat

Abarth 595 50th Anniversary

Abarth presented its original 595 at the Turin Motor Show in 1963. It was the car that put the Scorpion marque on the map and propelled the original Fiat 500 into hot hatch territory. And to mark that occasion, Fiat’s performance brand is launching the special edition you see here.

Revealed here ahead of its public debut at next week’s Frankfurt Motor Show, the new Abarth 595 50th Anniversary Edition packs a 1.4-liter turbo four with 180 horsepower (20 more than the standard 500 Abarth) channeled through the Abarth Competizione gearbox to the front wheels. The Scorpion brand has also retuned the suspension, fitted 305-millimeter Brembo discs, 17-inch wheels and installed a variable back-pressure exhaust.

Billed as the most powerful 595 to date, the special edition is identifiable by its matte white paint, red racing stripes and retro logos. Step inside and you’ll find red leather buckets with white trim. Only 299 examples will be made, but don’t go looking for this in US showrooms, as the Abarth range and the Fiat 500 upon which it’s based is different in the two markets. Read more in the official press release below.

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Abarth marks 50 years of 595 with special edition Fiat 500 originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 04 Sep 2013 17:59:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Official: Abarth marks 50 years of 595 with special edition Fiat 500

Filed under: Frankfurt Motor Show, Performance, Europe, Hatchback, Fiat

Abarth 595 50th Anniversary

Abarth presented its original 595 at the Turin Motor Show in 1963. It was the car that put the Scorpion marque on the map and propelled the original Fiat 500 into hot hatch territory. And to mark that occasion, Fiat’s performance brand is launching the special edition you see here.

Revealed here ahead of its public debut at next week’s Frankfurt Motor Show, the new Abarth 595 50th Anniversary Edition packs a 1.4-liter turbo four with 180 horsepower (20 more than the standard 500 Abarth) channeled through the Abarth Competizione gearbox to the front wheels. The Scorpion brand has also retuned the suspension, fitted 305-millimeter Brembo discs, 17-inch wheels and installed a variable back-pressure exhaust.

Billed as the most powerful 595 to date, the special edition is identifiable by its matte white paint, red racing stripes and retro logos. Step inside and you’ll find red leather buckets with white trim. Only 299 examples will be made, but don’t go looking for this in US showrooms, as the Abarth range and the Fiat 500 upon which it’s based is different in the two markets. Read more in the official press release below.

Continue reading Abarth marks 50 years of 595 with special edition Fiat 500

Abarth marks 50 years of 595 with special edition Fiat 500 originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 04 Sep 2013 17:59:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Mitsubishi working on 500-horsepower hybrid Evo?

Filed under: EV/Plug-in, Mitsubishi

Until reality sets in, we’ll settle for this report about Mitsubishi building what can only be described as one super plug-in hybrid. The Japanese automaker, per UK’s Autocar, is working on a version of the Lancer Evolution that would take on the Nissan GT-R.

Specifically, Autocar, citing what it says are “highly placed Mitsubishi executives,” says the PHEV would pair a 2.0-liter gas engine with two 80-horsepower electric motors to provide an awfully impressive 500 horsepower along with fuel economy of 150 miles per gallon (per the more lenient European driving cycle) and an all-electric driving range of as many as 40 miles.

Mitsubishi would use some of the technology employed in the MiEV Evolution II plug-in that raced at Pikes Peak this year, and while we don’t think it’ll look quite like that car (pictured above), we can dream a bit. Remaining an issue for Mitsubishi plug-ins, car execs say, is the continued lack of consensus on a fast-charging standard in the US, as Mitsubishi and Nissan continue to push for the CHAdeMO standard while US and European automakers bang the drum for the so-called SAE/”combo” fast-charging standard.

Mitsubishi working on 500-horsepower hybrid Evo? originally appeared on Autoblog Green on Wed, 24 Jul 2013 11:31:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Confirmed: Fiat 500 Cattiva on the way

Filed under: Concept Cars, Budget, Hatchback, Fiat

Fiat 500 Cattiva concept live at 2013 Detroit Auto Show - front three-quarter view

While its dealer body has been clamoring for new and larger models, Fiat has actually done a pretty good trade selling all manner of 500 variants, from the standard hatchback and 500C cabriolet to its Abarth models, 500e electric runabout and special editions like the Gucci.

Fiat USA was a little slow out of the gates as it built up brand awareness and its dealer network, but it’s now chugging along, with combined 500 model sales outselling that of its arch rival Mini (provided you subtract the Countryman crossover, a model for which Fiat has had no direct competitor up until this point). Franchisees are finally about to get the bigger, broader-appeal model they’ve been seeking in the form of the five-door 500L, but Fiat is still going to be devoting a lot of attention to their whisker-faced icon, the Cinquecento.

As proof, at the first drive event of the 500L in Baltimore, Fiat North America boss Jason Stoicevich confirmed that his company will produce a production version of the 500 Cattiva concept shown at the Detroit Auto Show in January. Stoicevich wouldn’t divulge the model’s pricepoint or availability timeframe, but he told us, “I can guarantee you it will happen. I just can’t tell you when.”

The Cattiva is based on the middle-child 500 Turbo, and is essentially a trim-and-tape package, albeit a very attractive one. It includes rich ‘Rame’ (read: copper) paint with black trim, including ‘Nero’ gloss black light housings front and rear and a matching roof-mounted spoiler along with unique charcoal 16-inch alloys. Inside, changes are limited to a ‘Matte Nero’ instrument panel and trim, along with silver stitching on the black sport wheel and shift knob. No word on any improvements to the Turbo’s 135-horsepower, 1.4-liter MultiAir four-cylinder, but at least that should keep the price from rising much above the standard 500T’s $19,500 MSRP. As far as timing goes, we’re thinking that this model won’t be too far down the line after the company launches the 500L.

Back when it revealed the 500 Cattiva concept, Fiat also showed a matte gray Tenebra showcar that builds upon the even hotter 500 Abarth, but Stoichevich declined to comment on that concept’s chances for production.

Fiat 500 Cattiva on the way originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 19 Jun 2013 08:43:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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100th Indy 500 oozes drama, takes no prisoners [spoilers, video]

Filed under: Motorsports

2011 Indy 500

2011 Indianapolis 500 – Click above for high-res image gallery

The crowd at the Brickyard for today’s Centennial running of the Indianapolis 500 certainly got their money’s worth. Once all the pre-race pageantry and fanfare was out of the way, the 100th Indy 500 provided a spectacle full of drama, lead changes, and a shocking, exciting finish. Click past the break to see how the race shook out, right up to the final corner.

Gallery: 2011 Indianapolis 500

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100th Indy 500 oozes drama, takes no prisoners [spoilers, video] originally appeared on Autoblog on Sun, 29 May 2011 18:12:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Video: Tanner Foust completes record-setting Team Hot Wheels jump at Indy 500

Team Hot Wheels
Team Hot Wheels’ “Fearless at the 500” record jump attempt – Click above for high-res image gallery

Prior to the start of today’s Indy 500, fans finally got to see the long-awaited Team Hot Wheels world-record jump attempt. The mystery “Yellow Driver” piloted specially-prepared truck down the 90-foot ramp that had been under construction in the Indianapolis Motor Speedway’s infield over the last several weeks. The neat gimmick behind Hot Wheels’ “Fearless at the 500” event was that the launch ramp itself was built to simulate that orange track we all grew up with, hung from a giant 10-story door. Talk about pandering to a guy’s inner child…

Anyhow, the stunt itself was a success, and fans at the Brickyard watched the truck sail, ramp-to-ramp, 332 feet through the air, setting a world record for four-wheeled vehicles in the process. Upon landing, the mystery driver doffed his helmet to reveal himself as American Top Gear host Tanner Foust. If you want to see the jump yourselves, be advised that ABC will air the stunt at 3:30 PM Eastern time today, following the conclusion of its Indy 500 race coverage. Check out the first few photos from the event below, and follow the jump for the press release.

UPDATE: Video of the jump now added after the break as well.

Gallery: Team Hot Wheels “Fearless at the 500” Jump

Continue reading Tanner Foust completes record-setting Team Hot Wheels jump at Indy 500

Tanner Foust completes record-setting Team Hot Wheels jump at Indy 500 originally appeared on Autoblog on Sun, 29 May 2011 14:55:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Video: Abarth 500 Motore Centrale R230 burns through its shoes

Filed under: Aftermarket, Performance, Videos, Hatchback, Fiat

Lucarelli Monza Motore Centrale R230

Lucarelli Monza Motore Centrale R230 – Click above to watch the video after the jump

What’s the point in moving an engine to the back to drive the rear wheels if you can’t light up those rear tires? That’s what the folks behind the Motore Centrale R230 have evidently figured, taking the mid-engined Fiat Abarth 500 for a spin or two around the back lot at a racing circuit.

The R230, for a quick refresher, is the first product of Lucarelli Monza, with an interior done up by Aznom. The comprehensive re-engineering of the car involved moving the engine – with some serious modifications – to the back of the car for entirely different dynamics from the Cinquecento on which it’s based.

We brought you initial details of the car’s development last month, followed by its unveiling at Top Marques Monaco. Now the same snap-happy videographers at Marchettino have given us footage of the R230 pulling donuts in a parking lot. And while the driver may not exactly be Tanner Foust, it’s worth a watch, so check it out after the jump.

Abarth 500 Motore Centrale R230 burns through its shoes originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 26 May 2011 16:57:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Official: 2012 Hyundai Genesis priced from $34,200; new 5.0 R-Spec to start at $46,500

Filed under: Car Buying, Sedan, Hyundai

2012 Hyundai Genesis 5.0 R-Spec

2012 Hyundai Genesis 5.0 R-Spec – Click above for high-res image gallery

The 2012 Hyundai Genesis sedan is hitting dealer lots as you read this, and pricing has officially been set at $34,200, not including $850 for destination and delivery. The facelifted Genesis four-door was unveiled at the 2011 Chicago Auto Show, and though it received a minor facelift and some other small interior changes, the big news for the 2012 model year is what’s under the hood.

That $34,200 price point corresponds to the base Genesis 3.8 sedan, which now uses a direct-injected 3.8-liter V6, rated at 333 horsepower and 291 pound-feet of torque – gains of 43 and 27, respectively, versus the 2011 model. A new eight-speed automatic transmission is also on tap, meaning the Genesis 3.8 will achieve up to 29 miles per gallon on the highway.

Moving up in the range, the Genesis 4.6 – $44,500 – also gets an eight-speed automatic transmission, though its V8 engine remains largely unchanged. Power ratings carry over from 2011 – 385 hp and 333 lb-ft of torque.

The 4.6 used to be the range-topping Genesis, but for 2012, Hyundai has introduced the new 5.0 R-Spec model, which, as its name suggests, is fitted with the automaker’s brand new 5.0-liter direct-injected V8. Paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission, the Tau 5.0 is good for 429 hp and 376 lb-ft of torque, while still returning 16/25 mpg city/highway. The R-Spec model also features unique 19-inch wheels, sportier suspension tuning and more aggressive appearance updates. The top-shelf Genesis retails for $46,500.

Follow the jump for the full details in Hyundai’s press blast.

Continue reading 2012 Hyundai Genesis priced from $34,200; new 5.0 R-Spec to start at $46,500

2012 Hyundai Genesis priced from $34,200; new 5.0 R-Spec to start at $46,500 originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 25 May 2011 13:28:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Hot Wheels world record jump at Indy 500 starting to take shape

Filed under: Motorsports, Etc., Marketing/Advertising, Off-Road

Indianapolis 500 jump

The ramp designed to propel Hot Wheels’ mystery driver to world record glory at the 100th Indianapolis 500 is starting to take shape. The ramp doesn’t look quite like it did in Hot Wheels’ original rendering, but it’s still an enormous and terrifying structure. Don’t believe us? Check out a full gallery of the ramp on the speedway’s Flickr page.

Hot Wheels’ goal is to propel a winged off-road truck 302 feet through the air, which would clinch the world record for distance. The death-defying stunt will kick off the excitement at next weekend’s Indy 500.

Hot Wheels world record jump at Indy 500 starting to take shape originally appeared on Autoblog on Sun, 22 May 2011 14:03:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Senate passes bill recognizing 100th anniversary of Indy 500

Filed under: Motorsports, Convertible, Government/Legal, Chevrolet

2011 camaro indy pace car

2011 Chevrolet Camaro SS Convertible Indianapolis 500 Pace Car – Click above for high-res image gallery

Americans began racing cars just as soon as they started to appear on our streets, as evidenced by the fact that the Indianapolis 500 has been going strong for 100 years. The U.S. Senate wanted to tip its collective hat to commemorate that momentous occasion, so our senators decided to pass a resolution officially recognizing the race for its longevity. And since it doesn’t cost anything to recognize a date, the resolution was passed unanimously.

In other interesting Indianapolis 500 news, the event’s 100-year history also coincides with the 100-year anniversary of Chevrolet. The company and the race are so intertwined that Arthur Chevrolet, who’s brother Louis founded the Bowtie Brand, ran the very first Indianapolis 500. Louis actually ran the race himself in 1915 and 1919, while another brother Gaston took first place in 1920. The 2011 Camaro Convertible will fittingly serve as the pace car for this year’s event.

Senate passes bill recognizing 100th anniversary of Indy 500 originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 20 May 2011 14:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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