Well what can we say about the legendary 131 Abarth that is not already known?
Before Group B there was Group 4, and Fiat (along with a little help from Abarth) dominated the World Rally Champinship with these rally monsters in 1977, 1978 and 1980 with the likes of Markku Alen and Walter Röhrl at the wheel.
Chassis number 131AR2040106 has been owned by the same rally driver since 1986. Purchased as one of the 400 homologation Stradales (UK registration number UYY272S) from the late, great Barry Waterhouse, custodian of Italtune, and converted to Group 4 spec.
Many ex Abarth Works parts have been used in the building of this Mirafiori. After a fortutitous trip to Kenya led to the acquisition of a whole 40ft container of Abarth rally goodies. Like the straight cut ZF Dogleg gearbox (5 speed). There is also an ex Abarth Works differential in the spares package
The beating heart of this Twincam Abarth is a 1995cc Fiat block with all steel internals and a lightened/balanced bottom end. Mated to an Italtune ported and gas flowed 16v head with Alquati 'Forest' camshafts and a pair of huge Weber 48IDF carburettors the sound is truly thunderous; it certainly pulls no punches.
When those twin Alquati cams come on song it really is a white knuckle ride! Blasting throught the close ratio gears to a thunderous soundtrack.
The gearbox in question is an ex Abarth Works straightcut ZF Dogleg unit with an Abarth Stradale differential. An ex works LSD comes with the car but in need of a rebuild.
The chassis has been seam welded with lightweight fibreglass wings and hoods and aluminium door skins. Underneath has been stripped of all underseal to save weight so it hides nothing.
Whilst it's not going to win 1st place in the Concours d'Elegance at Pebble Beach it does have some wonderful rally patina.
It has been used for one purpose only. To race, rally and enjoy.
Currently set up for Tarmac/Ashpalt competition; The front suspension is Group 4, McPherson struts, rose jointed and with new Bilstein shock absorbers all round.
Rear set up is fully independant as per Abarth.
Sitting in the cabin is like stepping back in time to 1980, you're Walter Röhrl and it's the Sanremo Rally.
Park yourself in the Sparco Evo2 bucket seat, buckle up the Sabelt 6 point harness, ignition on and press that start button.
The smell, the sound of the Works Abarth straight cut gears whining away coupled with the raucous noise of those Weber 48s and that screaming 16v powerhouse!
A true retro rally icon!