Awesome mid-engine, RWD Abarth 500 Motore Centrale revealed at Top Marques [w/video]

Filed under: Aftermarket, Performance, Europe, Videos, Hatchback, Misc. Auto Shows, Racing, Fiat

Lucarelli Monza 500 Motore Centrale R230

Lucarelli Monza 500 Motore Centrale R230 – Click above for image gallery

There’s a grand tradition to mid-engined hatchbacks that blend exotic layout with utilitarian bodystyle, and as promised, that tradition has now embodied itself in the Fiat 500.

Developed by Lucarelli Monza – a new tuning house eager to make its mark – the Abarth 500 Motore Centrale is a substantial re-engineering of the Italian retro hatch. The engine has been moved – apparently to a glass display case – in the rear, and extensively modified in the process. With a new turbocharger and intercooler, new catalytic converter and pistons, the 1.4-liter turbo four now drives 230 metric horsepower to the rear wheels, aided by an electronic limited-slip differential.

While the front MacPherson struts have been left intact, a new wishbone suspension has been crafted for the rear, joined by upgraded brakes with four-pot calipers all around and some revised bodywork with ducting fitted to help keep the engine cool in its new orientation. Aznom, meanwhile, has been brought on board strictly to outfit the interior with Poltrona Frau leather and Alcantara.

The road-going R230 is quoted for a 4.7-second sprint to 100 km/h (62 mph) and a 240 km/h (150 mph) top end. An R280 Pista version is also available with an extra 50 horses and 220 fewer pounds, plus a mechanical diff, full roll cage, adjustable suspension and data recorder, dropping its sprint down to 3.9 seconds and raising its top end up to 260 km/h (160 mph). No word on pricing, but you can bet that getting a budget hatchback to reach those kinds of numbers isn’t a cheap proposition.

Have a closer look in the gallery below, and follow the jump to see and hear the pocket rocket zipping around the streets of Monte Carlo thanks to Marco at Marchettino. Thanks to all for the tips!

Gallery: Lucarelli Monza 500 Motore Centrale R230

[Source: MotoreCentrale.com via Italiaspeed]

Continue reading Awesome mid-engine, RWD Abarth 500 Motore Centrale revealed at Top Marques [w/video]

Awesome mid-engine, RWD Abarth 500 Motore Centrale revealed at Top Marques [w/video] originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 21 Apr 2011 17:20:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Video: Tour the riches of Top Marques Monaco in five minutes

Filed under: Aftermarket, Concept Cars, Convertible, Coupe, Performance, SUV, Europe, Aston Martin, Specialty, Luxury, Koenigsegg

Pagani Huayra at Top Marques Monaco

Pagani Huayra at Top Marques Monaco 2011 – Click above to view video after the jump

If you missed any of the action from last week’s Top Marques Monaco show, we’ve got you covered. This five-minute clip condenses all the glitzy highlights of this year’s show into one horsepower-drenched summary. The show was a seriously drool-worthy affair, featuring a wide range of exotics; from classy, composed offerings from the likes of Aston Martin, to the delicious Pagani Huayra to the completely silly Tirrito Ayrton R.

High-end tuning companies always make a strong showing at Top Marques Monaco, and this year was no different. Gemballa’s two new offerings, the Tornado and the Mistrale, broke cover after the company’s recent troubles. Add to that a host of offerings from ABT, Koenigsegg and Marussia, and you’ve got a great way to kill five minutes. Click past the jump for all the exotic glory. Thanks for the tip, HF!

[Source: YouTube]

Continue reading Video: Tour the riches of Top Marques Monaco in five minutes

Video: Tour the riches of Top Marques Monaco in five minutes originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 19 Apr 2011 16:59:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Gemballa shows Mistrale and Tornado at Top Marques Monaco

Filed under: Aftermarket, Sedan, Performance, SUV, Europe, Porsche, Luxury

2012 Gemballa Tornado

2012 Gemballa Tornado – Click above for high-res image gallery

Despite losing its founder under suspicious circumstances last year, German tuning house Gemballa is back with a vengeance at this year’s Top Marques Monaco show. To help celebrate its 30th anniversary, the company is rolling out two new models: The Porsche Cayenne-based Tornado and the Porsche Panamera-based Mistrale.

Both of Gemballa’s new models sport extensively reworked bodies, which Gemballa says shave nearly 150 pounds off each car. The weight savings come thanks to carbon fiber body panels made in-house by Gemballa. Both cars’ front fenders, hood, doors and front valance get replaced with new bespoke units made entirely of the black stuff.

Gemballa also unleashed its expertise underhood. In Stage 1 trim, the Tornado delivers 580 horsepower and the Mistrale pushes 610. If that’s not enough, Gemballa is happy to oblige with Stage 2, which takes either car to 700 hp and 737 lb.-ft. of toque. Keeping all that grunt in check is a set of enormous Brembo clamps developed specifically for Gemballa.

No matter which car you choose, you get a set of 410-mm, six-piston discs up front with 380-mm, four-piston units out back. The new brakes exert stopping power on a set of forged 22-inch Gemballa wheels. Despite their size, Gemballa says the forged rims are lighter and stronger than the stock Porsche units.

Inside, the cars get Gemballa’s signature Alcantara and quilted leather treatment. If either of Gemballa’s new rockets floats your boat, we’d suggest getting in line now, as the company says it will only build 30 examples of each. Check out the full press release after the jump.

Gallery: 2012 Gemballa Tornado and Mistrale

2012 Gemballa Tornado2012 Gemballa Mistrale2012 Gemballa Mistrale interior

[Source: Gemballa]

Continue reading Gemballa shows Mistrale and Tornado at Top Marques Monaco

Gemballa shows Mistrale and Tornado at Top Marques Monaco originally appeared on Autoblog on Sat, 16 Apr 2011 17:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Melkus showing GT, GTS versions of RS2000 at Top Marques Monaco

Filed under: Coupe, Performance, Misc. Auto Shows, MISC

Melkus RS2000 GTS

Melkus RS2000 GTS – Click above for image gallery

We were suitably impressed a couple of years ago at the Frankfurt Motor Show where we stumbled upon the Melkus RS2000. The gullwing sportscar is based on the Lotus Elise and built by a historic East German nameplate revived by the son and grandson of its founder. That same marque has now rolled up at the Top Marques show in Monaco with more powerful variants.

Replacing the Toyota-sourced, 270-horsepower, 1.8-liter four from the Elise on which it’s based, the GT and GTS versions of the Melkus RS2000 pack a 2.0-liter turbo four – reportedly sourced from a “well-known German manufacturer” (we’re looking at you, Volkswagen) – in 300- and 350-hp guises, respectively. With only 2,145 pounds to schlepp around, the new engine should be good for a 4.5 or 3.9-second 0-100 km/h (62 mph) time, while a new carbon-fiber aero kit helps it look the part.

Gallery: Melkus RS2000 GTS

Gallery: Frankfurt 2009: Melkus RS2000

[Source: Melkus via World Car Fans]

Melkus showing GT, GTS versions of RS2000 at Top Marques Monaco originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 15 Apr 2011 12:59:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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