The Fiat Abarth 850 TC was first introduced in 1960 and was based on the popular Fiat 600. Abarth, which was a performance tuning company that was founded by Carlo Abarth in 1949, saw the potential of the Fiat 600 as a racing car and began to modify it for competition use.
The Abarth 850 TC was equipped with a 4-cylinder engine that had a displacement of 847cc. Abarth’s tuning kit, which included a larger carburetor, a high-performance camshaft, and a free-flowing exhaust system, boosted the engine’s power output from the standard 21 horsepower to around 52 horsepower. This power increase was achieved while maintaining a relatively low weight, as the car’s body was made of aluminum and fiberglass.
The Abarth 850 TC also featured a reinforced chassis, which was necessary to cope with the car’s increased power output. The car’s suspension was also upgraded, with stiffer springs, a front anti-roll bar, and adjustable dampers. The brakes were also improved, with front disc brakes being fitted as standard.
The car’s bodywork was designed to be aerodynamic and lightweight, with features such as a low-slung nose, a sloping roofline, and a short rear overhang. The car’s overall length was just 3.15 meters, making it very agile and maneuverable.
The Abarth 850 TC was extremely successful in racing, particularly in the European touring car championship. The car won numerous races and championships during the 1960s, with drivers such as Carlo Abarth himself and Mario Colucci achieving great success behind the wheel.
The Abarth 850 TC also had a successful career in rallying, with Abarth driver Tony Fassina winning the 1963 Italian Rally Championship in an Abarth 850 TC. The car’s small size and nimble handling made it well-suited to the tight and twisty stages that were common in rally events.
The Abarth 850 TC was produced in limited numbers, with only around 2,000 units ever being built. This rarity, combined with the car’s success on the track, has made it a highly sought-after and collectible car today.
In summary, the Fiat Abarth 850 TC was a highly successful racing car that helped establish Abarth as a leading producer of high-performance cars. Its innovative design and engineering made it a formidable competitor on the track, and its success in racing helped solidify Abarth’s reputation as a dominant force in European motorsport during the 1960s.