The new Fiat Panda Abarth Rally concept joined Fiat's strong rally line-up at the Bologna Motor Show. Built by N-Technology, its is based on the new 1.3 Multijet Panda launched in September. Fitted with a large geometry turbo, big-bore exhaust and re-mapped ECU, Fiat's tiny 1.3-litre Multijet diesel now pumps out 102bhp.

The Panda concept is joined by the the new Punto Abarth Rally and the Stilo Abarth Rally. The Punto Abarth Rally is drawn from the facelifted Punto launched this summer and the rally version, first seen at Frankfurt, is expected to be homogated in time for next month's opening World Rally Championship Monte Carlo Rally.

The Panda Abarth Rally on show in Bologna is a study for a rally car powered by a turbodiesel engine, the latest in a long list of racing cars for emerging drivers. Branded with Abarth's legendary scorpion trademark, the car's exclusive kit includes special spoilers at the front and rear, and deeper sideskirts. The wheels adopt 7x16 rims, and additional wheelarch moulding, incorporated into the front spoiler and sideskirts, is necessary to fit them. Inside, the car has a cage roll-bar in steel and chrome-molybdenum alloy (complying with FIA regulations for 2005) and the usual accessories adopted on racing versions.

An assertive car, and not only for its looks, but also its performance, thanks to the brilliant 1.3 Multijet 16v engine which develops an amazing 102 bhp at 4200 rpm. The engine power has been boosted by the addition of a slightly larger, variable geometry turbo, a racing exhaust complete with catalytic converter, and modifications to the mapping of the standard ECU. The revolutionary 102 bhp 1.3 Multijet engine is combined with a new 5-speed gearbox derived from the one on the Punto JTD. This device has been modified for the higher torque and can also accommodate a self-locking differential with viscous joint.

Where the suspension is concerned, the car adopts the system used on other Abarth rally versions: racing trim, Bilstein oil-air dampers, and Eilbach double springs that can be adjusted for the height and camber. The Fiat Abarth Rally has been prepared by N-Technology, the company responsible for all the Fiat Group's racing cars.

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