Fiat 500C by Garage Italia Customs for Diesel founder Renzo Rosso

 

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Lapo Elkann is a descendant of Fiat’s co-founder, and his firm Garage Italia Customs specializes in adding a custom design flair to the automaker’s products. For the company’s latest work, it brings a fashion-inspired look to the 500C for Italian fashion house Diesel founder Renzo Rosso, the 555RR.

This particular project brought together two Italian specialists: Diesel in fashion and Garage Italia Customs in car customization. I’m proud of the result achieved by my Maestros, who were able to create a car that’s a perfect synthesis of Diesel’s style and rock spirit, exactly what Renzo asked me for.

Lapo Elkann

The 555RR, is a one-off attempts to evoke a ‘spirit of rock’, but that’s a hard style to pull off on just a jolly, little car. While the effect doesn’t pop in these photos, Garage Italia Customs gives the 500C extra bling by using black paint with silver glitter in it. The Swarovski crystals framing the front and rear lights are more obvious, though. To play off these shiny elements, the company paints a matte black stripe over the hood and down the hatch. The crimson trim on the front bumper and around the wheels helps break up the rest of the exterior’s dark demeanor.

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Inside, Garage Italia Customs makes specific references to Diesel’s products. In a nod to its biker jackets, the central seats are lined with black lozenge-patterned Foglizzo leather – plus, a zipper runs above the glove compartment on the passenger’s side – matching the black denim design details on the side panels, while the whole of the seat is outfitted with Foglizzo Lord leather. The sides feature a rock touch produced by pleated leather and leather lacing as lateral stitching.

The Fiat 555RR receives a heavy dose of the Diesel brand’s fashion, style and spirit.

The door panels and gear lever cover use denim, while the lever itself features a bright red pommel that replaces the traditional gear numbers for white letters that spell out ‘Enjoy’, and have Rosso’s monogram R on them. The ceiling is also lined with black lozenge-pattern Foglizzo leather.

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The Italian tuning house doesn’t discuss any powertrain changes. However, we hope this custom has a diesel engine. It would only be appropriate given the client.

Come into Lapo Elkann’s beautiful world of Garage Italia Customs.

 

 

 

 

Abarth 595 Yamaha Factory Racing Edition

Abarth is celebrating its position as Official Sponsor and Car Supplier to the FIM MotoGP Championship with the launch of a new range of 595 sports hatches – the 595 Yamaha Factory Racing Edition.

Created from a partnership with Yamaha, and with world champion riders Valentino Rossi and Jorge Lorenzo on course for an historic one-two in this year’s championship, the new edition comes in a choice of seven striking colours and is packed with sporty features.

With 17-inch matt black alloy wheels, painted brake callipers and optional matching Abarth side stripes and mirror covers, there is no mistaking the new 595 Yamaha Factory Racing Edition. Darkened windows, a flat-bottom leather steering wheel, aluminium pedals and a special ‘Yamaha Factory Racing’ badge – all standard – enhance the model’s sporting credentials. Xenon headlamps, leather interior and dual zone air conditioning are among the options.

Powered by an upgraded version of Abarth’s potent 1.4-litre T-Jet engine, the 595 Yamaha Factory Racing Edition is further enhanced with a Record Monza exhaust system, Koni shock absorbers with FSD valves and Eibach lowering springs.

The new 595 Yamaha Factory Racing Edition adds a new dimension to the Abarth 595 line-up. With an upgrade to 160 horsepower, lowered suspension, sporting looks and a great sounding exhaust system, we expect a lot of interest in this car from Abarth enthusiasts and new customers alike.

The Abarth 595 Yamaha Factory Racing Edition is available to order. Come into the beautiful world of Abarth.

Abarth 695 Maserati Edition

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The Abarth 695 Maserati Edition, the new Limited Edition (499 vehicles) will make its society debut on the occasion of the thirtieth anniversary of the Mille Miglia, which Enzo Ferrari called “the most beautiful race in the world”. Displayed at Piazza della Loggia in Brescia in the midst of the collectors’ automotive jewels and ‘luxury cars’ of today, this glamorous car represents the bond between Abarth and Maserati, based on a host of shared values, including attention to detail, elegance and a passion for performance and sport.

Following the collaborative project three years ago with Ferrari and the creation of the Abarth 695 Tributo Ferrari, this is one more project that confirms the authoritative presence of Abarth in the luxury sports segment, this time flanked by a brand whose history of sporting achievements and elegant road cars is recognised worldwide. Karl Abarth and Alfieri Maserati: two legends, united by passion for mechanics and engines, who lent their names to two of the most prestigious companies to manufacture cars marked out by style and unmistakable performance.

Just as the Abarth 695 Tributo Ferrari is the utmost expression of Abarth’s sporty character and ‘racing spirit’, this new Limited Edition epitomises sheer elegance united to the comfort of a ‘GranTurismo’, but with the handling of a car fit to take to the road every day.

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The new Abarth 695 Maserati Edition is an exclusive convertible which blends the aggression and sportiness of a high-performance car with the refined, elegant aesthetics of a convertible. In keeping with Maserati’s standards, this new Limited Edition is distinguished by excellent handling and outstanding sportiness, together with a great level of comfort and attention to materials and detail.

It features exclusive style details and special technical features developed by Abarth engineers for Maserati. To start with, the 1.4 Turbo T-Jet 16v engine boosted to 180 HP and teamed with the electrically operated manual Abarth Competizione gearbox with steering wheel controls, which enhances the performance of the engine with reduced gearshift times as well as guaranteeing an experience of superior comfort at the wheel.

Again to improve performance, especially acceleration, the car is fitted with performance tyres on 17″ alloy wheels featuring a special Maserati-inspired ‘Neptune’ design. The ride and braking system have also been strengthened to cope with the extra power: Brembo 305 mm brake discs that can be dismantled with grey fixed four-piston caliper, and special Koni shock absorbers that guarantee performance in complete safety.

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Nor would it be complete without the variable back-pressure ‘dual mode’ exhaust, designed to improve engine performance and deliver an inspiring sound above 3,000 rpm, with tailpipes which have been modified to assume the hexagonal shape which has always marked out Maserati cars.

The car’s exterior features a body in Pontevecchio Bordeaux. This colour from Maserati is achieved with special three-layer paintwork which reflects light and accentuates the shine of the colour. The same paintwork is also to be found on the door mirrors. The electrically controlled soft top is made of grey fabric.

The new Abarth adopts Xenon headlights with dipped and driving light functions for improved light emission and excellent performance in all weather conditions. These devices deliver three times the light intensity and duration of standard halogen-lamp headlights.

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The customisation is just as complete on the inside. The interiors demonstrate both the attention to detail and the sportiness that characterise the two brands, starting with seats upholstered entirely in sand beige leather, with containment strips featuring single-layer padding, sporty but elegant and comfortable at the same time, and stylish details such as the number “695” heat-printed on the headrest.

The dashboard and gearbox trim are distinguished by a special matt-finish carbon lining, further enhanced with the 695 logo, while the door panels and rear panels undergo a special UV-LUX treatment, which lends the trims an elegant grey ‘flocking’ effect. The black leather steering wheel is characterised by beige leather inserts and tricolour hub and houses the ‘steering wheel gearbox’ controls, while the instrument panel has been specifically produced by the Jaeger brand.

Other details enrich the interior, such as the aluminium pedal unit and sill plate, the carbon fibre kick plate with customised ‘Abarth 695 Maserati Edition’ graphics and the plate with the car’s series number from 1 to 499. Lastly, as proof of its touring vocation and to enhance the on-board experience, the Abarth 695 Maserati Edition comes as standard with a boosted JBL hi-fi audio system with 9 speakers and an 8-channel amplifier supplying 400 W of total power.

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In accordance with the tradition of Abarth Limited Editions, the already extensive equipment of the Abarth 695 Maserati Edition is expanded through accessories and merchandising designed to enhance the experience of the brand both on board and outside the car, as dictated by the DNA of Abarth and Maserati – more than just a car, a genuine philosophy of life. To take just one example, the Tramontano Tribute to Abarth Travel Pack, comprising two stylish anthracite leather travel bags.

As of its presentation at the Mille Miglia, all the information on this new Limited Edition can be found at Abarth Specialties.com, the new site which Abarth has dedicated to all Limited Editions produced in recent years, from 2007 until now. This showcase introduces the general public to the world of Limited Editions, from the Opening Edition made one year after the rebirth of the brand in July 2008, stopping off at the Zerocento, the exclusive Abarth 500 with customised styling and top-flight performance, launched in November 2008 for the centenary of the birth of Karl Abarth, before finishing with the Abarth 695 Tributo Ferrari and the Abarth Cabrio Italia.

But it’s not only for the general public; the site is intended to facilitate direct communication with Abarth Limited Edition owners. As the presentation unfolds at the Mille Miglia, they can have exclusive access to an area with video images of the car and will be able to pre-order online, so as to ensure that they can stake their claim immediately.

 

 

 

 

Fiat 500C by Gucci, The Convertible That Matches Your Bag

 

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If you put together something as iconic as the Fiat 500, the Gucci brand and a bunch of slim models like Russian bombshell Natasha Poly, you’re bound to get a bit of attention. As a result, it doesn’t surprise us at all that the Italian carmaker has logged 3,000 pre-orders for the 500 by Gucci already. Now, the convertible version has been revealed, and it’s called the 500C by Gucci… obviously.

Orders will be taken starting this month and the car will be arriving at dealerships worldwide from this September. To highlight the coolness of the Italian convertible that can be matched to a fake purse, from August 19th ‘500C by Gucci’ will be the star of an original tour that will stop at some of the most famous places in Europe.

 

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The latest version of Fiat’s designer convertible has been tweaked by Gucci and features all of its trademarks, from the red and green stripes to the logos on the seats and wheel hubs. It will come in two body colours: white with matte chrome-plated elements and glossy black with shiny chrome-plated accents.

Both color versions get the same soft top is black with the characteristic green-red-green Gucci web pattern. The body is also set apart from the regular 500 by 16″ alloy wheels characterised by the unmistakable retro design of the citycar. The bug caps sport a double “G” logo in matching body colour and the Gucci signature in italics is displayed on the tailgate and on the door pillar.

Standard equipment includes utomatic climate control system, seven airbags (front, side, window and knee), Blue&Me system integrated with rear parking sensors, car radio with CD-MP3 player and leather steering wheel with radio controls.

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The beautiful  ‘500C by Gucci’ tour will hit Saint Tropez (from August 19 to 27), Berlin (September 8 – 14), Barcelona (September 25 – October 2), London (October 16 – 23) and Geneva (October 23 – 30). In Italy, the tour will start from Forte dei Marmi (August 22 – 28) and then move to Rome (September 4 – 11), Florence (September 19 – 26) and Milan (October 8 – 16).

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Fiat 500 Marcia Corta by Camal

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If you are a fan of the Bertone and Pininfarina design houses, then Alessio Minchella and Alessandro Camorali are names very familiar to you. Among the cars they have designed the most famous ones are the Alfa Romeo BAT11, the Ferrari 458 Italia, 599XX and the 599GTO. And as many car designers who worked for great design houses, like Giorgetto Giugiaro (Bertone – Ghia – Italdesign) or Marcello Gandini (Bertone), the guys wanted ‘something more’. In 2008 they have founded ‘Camal’ and the first car to be designed by their little company is the 500 Marcia Corta (‘Short Gear’ in Italian).

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A quick look to their car will unveil a design language inspired by classic Abarth and Giannini models. The exterior package includes new new front and rear bumpers, sideskirts, spoiler, and competition-style quad spotlight pod. As their concept is based on the 500 EsseEsse, under the hood you will find the same 1.4 liter turbocharged engine that delivers 160 HP. But it will be combined with a new exhaust system.

The 500 Marcia Corta is just a concept at the moment, but Camal is currently looking for partners to help with production and distribution.

Come into the beautiful world of Camal Studio.

 

 

 

 

Haute automobile: Fiat 500 Castagna Tender Two

 

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Milan-based coachbuilder Castagna is hardly the household name that rivals such as Bertone and Pininfarina have become. In 1913, when ‘aerodynamics’ was not yet a common talking point, Castagna was the first to come up with the new ‘minivan’ concept and the ‘teardrop bodyshape that offers little air resistance’. Innovation is one of the distinguishing features of their design philosophy, so much so that it often becomes an aesthetics premise.

Their previous works have included one-off vehicles such as the Ferrari 550 Rosselini, Maserati Auge, Ferrari 575 Aria, Bentley GT Shooting Brake as well as a number of coachbuilding projects which saw creations such as a Mini Tender, Mini SUV and Mini Woody Wagon back in 2004. Now the Italian Carozzeria has released details and a full set of high-resolution images of its newest creation, the all-electric Fiat 500 Tender Two that’s inspired from the nautical themed late 1950s / early 1960s Fiat 500 Ghia Jolly.

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Castagna has created a special study based on the new Fiat 500 that is in spirit of the original Ghia-built Fiat 500 Jolly, a relatively expensive beach car conversion of the 500 in the late 50’s – early 60’s that was intended primarily for enjoyment and marketed towards the rich and famous as yacht tenders, golf carts and estate runabouts. The Tender Two follows the original Tender model the coachbuilder created back in 2005 based on the Mini Cooper.

Up to this day it is the first plein air version of the Fiat 500 and the first car with fully electric propulsion in this class to have a technical solution that can push up to 130 km/h (autolimited speed), a range of 120/140 km (depending on the type of use) and times of extremely rapid recharge.

To create the Tender Two, Castagna’s designers removed the doors, rear-seats, tailgate and rooftop of the production car while in order to maintain structural rigidity, they raised and reinforced the 500’s side sills. The most prominent feature of the Tender Two is of course its removable striped canvas roof-top complemented by the nautical themed teak wood that covers the cargo area and the top part of the side sills. Additionally, the Tender Two features new upholstery.

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A special digital instrument placed on the dashboard above the central air vents give all the information (power output, instant consumption, retention of office gear…) and the absence of the classic terminal exhaust are the only clues to reveal the new mechanisation of this example, which in terms of performance on the road does not make us regret those which are equipped with the combustion engine, especially in departure from still. Like the all fuoriserie Castagna, every detail is done from the customer’s description and the car is then regularly approved.

The interior is completely covered in leather-type watercraft (able to resist abrasion of salt water and sand) with contrast stitching in which are inspired by the special blue tone fabric made from waterproof for the awning. The new line is enriched by finishing in solid teak, which is used in glossy and matte contrast, in dark wicker plus the ‘tientibene’ in polished steel and many special nautical derivations giving a typical ‘marine style’ to the whole. At the center of the rear cockpit, in teak striped in black, a room that can accommodate a drawer for towels by the sea was obtained. Complete the on-board equipment awning’s foldable steel structure, side guards in transparent material for rainy days as well as the necessary cover for the winter period and the charging cable with the different types of plugs to access any type of socket.

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However the coolest thing about the Fiat 500 Tender Two is hidden underneath the hood. In cooperation with Swiss company MES-DEA, Carozzeria Castagna has replaced the production 500’s powertrain with a zero-emission electric unit.

The Italian firm claims that the 500 Tender Two has a top speed of about 130 km/h – 81 mph and a range of 140 km or 87 miles after a four hour charge of the batteries which should be more than enough to fool around in the harbours of Cannes, Monaco or Puerto Banus, or any Mediterranean island Paradise. Have fun! Lots of fun!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Abarth is back!

The Geneva International Motor Show is traditionally the most important spring exhibition for Europe. The 50 firsts can be viewed here for the first time. One of them is Abarth!

A great project will be launched at the 77th Geneva International Motor Show: the rebirth of one of the most prestigious brands in world motorsports. Its symbol is a scorpion, and its name is Abarth.

Abarth has always been synonymous with assertive cars, competitiveness, passion and excitement, and it now returns with a new range that will appeal to all lovers of motorsports. Abarth’s first interpretation of the Grande Punto will be on the ‘catwalk’ at the Geneva Show, the first step in an initiative which will later involve other models.

This new adventure starts in the familiar, uniquely emotional context and exclusive setting of the Geneva Motor Show. A striking stand has been prepared, in line with the philosophy of Abarth’s rebirth, an innovative space with a fresh, contemporary, technological language and great attention to every detail. The new elements that will publicise the Abarth brand are displayed with all their strong, original personality: the revamped version of the famous Abarth racing stripe has been rendered with LED tiles, while the new logo, the scorpion and the wording are all large, three-dimensional elements in polished, satin-effect aluminium.

The Abarth values and tradition on the other hand are underlined discreetly and technologically: refined materials and precious finishing details in aluminium, carbon fibre, enamel and lacquer decorate the exhibition area, and draw attention to the true stars of the stand: the Grande Punto Abarth S2000, a car that has been type-approved for racing and is proving to be highly successful, and the Grande Punto Abarth Preview, a concept car making its world debut.

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The absolute star of the stand is the Grande Punto Abarth Preview, a true jewel of assertiveness and elegance. The car will be marketed in September, to enhance the sporty, youthful positioning of the Grande Punto.

The car on show in Geneva is equipped with a 1.4 Turbo petrol engine that delivers 150 bhp at 5500 rpm, boosted to 155 bhp by the adoption of 98 RON petrol. What is more, thanks to a booster kit, a version with twice as much power as the basic version (180 bhp) will soon be available. This is a revival of a tradition from the past: for example, the Fiat 500 of 1958 delivered 13 bhp at 4000 rpm with a top speed of 85 km/h, while the Fiat 500 Abarth of the same year delivered 26 bhp at 5000 rpm and a top speed of 118 km/h.

The Grande Punto Abarth aims to reinvigorate the performance of these entertaining performance cars and offer young drivers, in particular, the opportunity to enter the racing world in complete safety and at an accessible price.

We have to be patient for a while, our Spargos and leather racing gloves can stay in the closet until September. We will keep you informed. Enter the wonderful world of Abarth.