Click above for high-res gallery of the Fiat 500 Abarth esseesse

Abarth, the high-performance wing of Fiat, got to finally unveil its hotted up version of the 500 hatch at the 2008 Paris Motor Show. The 500 Abarth esseesse (that's "SS" in Italian) takes Fiat's throwback three-door and adds a road-hugging ground effects kit with a new lower front fascia, Abarth-spec 17-inch white wheels, a lowered sport suspension and, most importantly, a turbocharged 1.4L four-cylinder producing 160 hp and a peak torque rating of 170 lb-ft in "sport mode". We thought Abarth would fit the 500 esseesse with a six-speed transmission, but the specs reveal that it will be one cog short with a five-speed manual. Still, Abarth claims it will claw its way to 62 mph in 7.4 seconds and reach a top speed of 131 mph. Performance specs aside, we bet drag racing and runs to the rev limiter aren't half as much fun in the 500 esseesse as simply dashing down a twisty mountain pass.

Related GalleryParis 2008: Fiat 500 Abarth esseesse LIVE


500 Abarth 1.4 16V turbo 160 CV "esseesse"

Engine

• 4 cylinders in line, 4 valves per cylinder, 1368 cm3
• Power: 160 CV (147 KW) at 5750 g/min.
• Max. torque of 206 Nm (230 Nm sport mode) at 3000 g/min.
• IHI RHF3 fixed geometry turbocharger

Transmission
• 5-speed C510 transmission

Air filter
• Abarth-specific, powered by BMC

Steering
• Electric power steering with "sport mode"

Suspension
• Front: McPherson with anti-roll bar
• Rear: interconnected bars with torsion beam

Ride height
• Specifically lowered compared to the 500 Abarth 135CV

Brakes
• Self-ventilated, perforated front brake disc ø 284 mm x 22 mm
• Perforated rear brake disc ø 240 mm x 11 mm
• High-performance front brake pads

Wheels
• Abarth-specific Abarth "esseesse" style alloys, 7" x 17" ET 35
• 205/40 ZR17 P ZERO BLACK tires

Performance
• Maximum speed 211 Km/h.
• Acceleration 0/100 m 7.4 sec.

Fuel consumption
• Urban: 8.5 litres per 100km
• Extra-urban: 5.4 litres per 100km
• Combined: 6.5 litres per 100km

Emissions
• 155 g per km CO2 (compared to Euro 5 CEE-F5 standard)
Special features
• Specific ""esseesse"" key cover
• Tire pressure sensors
• ""esseesse"" logo on tailgate/engine hood