Frankfurt Preview: Fiat Grande Punto Abarth SS

UPDATE: Official Press Release and engine details added

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Back in February, Fiat previewed the look of its Grande Punto Abarth, a high-performance version of its popular hatch wearing the storied Abarth name and scorpion badge. At the Frankfurt Motor Show next month, the automaker will unveil the Grande Punto Abarth Super Sport, or 'essesse'. From what we can tell, the Abarth SS version of the Grande Punto will add a more aggressive body kit to the car on which it's based, including wider fender flares to accommodate a larger wheel/tire package, three large air intakes in the front bumper, new side mirrors, a rear spoiler that integrates with the body and a new rear bumper that wraps around two big tailpipes.

Of course, the new body kit presupposes more power, and Fiat tells us that the SS will have nearly double the power of the base model Grande Punto, which puts out around 90bhp. The SS will produce 180bhp then, around 25-30bhp more than the standard Abarth. Commensurate upgrades to the Abarth's suspension and brakes are included, as well. While Fiat is officially calling the Grande Punto Abart SS a prototype, our boys from Autoblog Spanish indicate that it's likely to see production, if only in limited numbers.

[Source: Fiat]

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Grande Punto Abarth "essesse" prototype (Super Sport)

The absolute star of the stand is the Grande Punto Abarth "essesse" (Super Sport) prototype. A jewel of assertiveness and elegance, the car is offered with a booster kit that almost doubles its power output with relation to the basic model (up to almost 180 bhp). The '"essesse"' kit also envisages a number of specific elements that accentuate both the sporty look of the Abarth model (for example adhesives with the 'essesse' logo or a chequered flag) and its dynamic behaviour, with a particular low stance or a more powerful braking system. This is a feature that maintains a brand tradition: for example, the Fiat 500 of 1958 delivered 13 bhp at 4000 rpm and a top speed of 85 km/h, while the Fiat 500 Abarth of the same year, produced 26 bhp at 5000 rpm and a top speed of 118 km/h.

The Grande Punto Abarth and the Grande Punto Abarth with the 'essesse' kit aim to revive the thrill of those cars, offering an opportunity, addressed to the young in particular, of entering the racing world in total safety and at an accessible price.

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