Between 1963 and 65 Carlo Abarth extended his ‘touch’ to a small series of Zagato-bodied Simcas. CCRJ has recently restored one of these beautiful giant-killers to win another day in its natural habitat, the track.
• Client: Confidential
• Restoration Degree: Total
• For Sale: No
Carlo Abarth did nearly everything it was possible to do within the automobile industry. His particular speciality was in tuning small capacity production cars, particularly Fiats. Abarth was said to be the only engineer who could make little cars race like the biggest and the best race cars.
Abarth also worked his magic with Simca. He got the best from the Simca 1000 by raising engine capacity to 1300 or 1500cc and clothing the chassis in a lightweight body by Zagato. Although this car looked fairly good when it arrived at CCRJ, it was missing major components such as transmission, ignition system, inlet and carburation systems among others.
This was not going to be easy…
Arriving in the CCRJ workshop as a chassis, a motor and a lot of boxes, the first stage was to strip the Abarth to the last nut and bolt. With the body repaired and painted, the next step was to restore or remanufacture all components as appropriate.
As Abarth-Simcas were built by hand in tiny numbers, a great deal of effort went into establishing originality and best practice. Once the build had started, special attention was paid to the motor, which is now significantly more powerful and reliable than it was 50 years ago.