The Fiat 500 is supposed to be a budget model – something you can pick up with less than twenty grand to your name. But once Abarth gets its hands on it, all bets are off. The Scorpion brand is charged with getting the most performance it can out of budget-oriented vehicles like the Cinquecento and Punto, and that's just what it's done with the new 695 Biposto.
The Fiat group has a knack for (or a habit of) dressing up its most affordable hatchbacks in tribute to its most expensive exotics. Alfa Romeo did a special MiTo and Giulietta for Maserati dealers, and Abarth did a special 500 to honor Ferrari. But since the latter has run its production run, the Scorpion marque is celebrating Maserati with this latest version.
Of all the major international auto shows on the calendar each year, the Bologna Motor Show may not rank among the most important. But it is vital for the Fiat Group, whose numerous brands make up more than just one lion's share of the Italian auto industry. As such, it's not a show for Fiat to take lightly, and this year, it's coming with a whole mess of new debuts.
The thing about scorpions is that they pack a mean wallop in a small package. And the same can be said of the auto marque that hoists the scorpion as its emblem. As promised, Abarth rolled into the Frankfurt Motor Show three cars deep. Or three new versions of their existing lineup, which is essentially centered around two cars, anyway.
Fiat's performance division, Abarth doesn't have a lot to work with. Just two models, in fact, but that hasn't stopped the Scorpion marque from making the most of the 500 and Punto ranges. Clearly, there's a lot of room for hot-hatch workings. Just take a look at what Abarth has in store for the upcoming Frankfurt Motor Show.
Back a couple of years ago, Italian boatcrafter SACS teamed up with both Lancia and Abarth – each a division of the Fiat group – on a pair of ridiculously powerful rigid inflatable boats. The Lancia model packed 1,120 horsepower and a closed cockpit, the Abarth a trifecta of 350-horsepower V8 outboards.