Auctions and Brokerage
Coachwork by Zagato
*Please note that this car is titled as a 1957, but is in fact a 1959 model. Event eligibility will correspond to its 1959 model year.
Carlo Abarth's Legend
Switching focus to automobiles after the close of WWII, Austrian-born Carlo Abarth settled in Italy where he represented Porsche’s design studio and collaborated on the innovative but aborted Cisitalia 360 monoposto for Piero Dusio. On March 31, 1949, Abarth & C. SrL was established, with Abarth’s Scorpion birth sign as the firm’s inspired mascot. Immediately successful, the “Squadra Abarth” gave a winning luster to Abarth`s fast-growing line of tuned exhaust systems, engine-upgrade kits, and complete cars. Highly tuned Porsches and Fiats were a specialty through the 1950s and 1960s, with all lightweight and potent “giant killers” possessing capabilities far out of proportion to their small-displacement engines. Among Abarth’s many achievements, his finest undoubtedly remains the stunning 1-2-3 class victory at the final “speed” edition of the Mille Miglia in 1957 with his Fiat 600-based, Zagato- bodied Abarth 750 GT Corsa.
With its lightweight “double bubble” Zagato body, this outstanding example is one of a handful originally produced by Abarth. It was purchased new in Italy by one Sig. Tomasetti and remained in his family, passing through his son to Paolo Maria Ravazzi from Parma, Italy. The Abarth’s FIVA paperwork was issued in 1995; and thereafter, it ran the 1997 Louis Vuitton Classic rally in Italy and then its fourth running of the French Tour Auto in 1998. In July 2001, the Abarth was acquired by its next owner, who entered it into the 2006 Scarsdale Concours and the 2008 Fairfield County Concours, and retained it until it was acquired by the consignor in 2013.
As offered, the Abarth remains correct with just one repaint in light blue, and it is engaging throughout with period fog lights and the largely original interior, with Zagato-style seats now fitted. The original seats accompany the car at auction. The 747 cc engine was freshly rebuilt by Toby Knapp of Connecticut using high-strength chromoly internal components. An electronic ignition system was added as well as a performance air filter atop a larger carburetor. Of particular note, the Abarth is complete with many period details including the original wheels, with the exception of hubcaps. In addition to the Zagato’s original bumperettes, the vehicle is accompanied at auction by the original carburetor and air cleaner, an additional exhaust header, and the original “flat-sided”-style seats. An incredibly engaging lightweight sports car and wonderfully original, this example will certainly be considered for virtually any event the new owner should choose to participate in, especially today’s Mille Miglia, where the car would surely delight all in attendance.