Available for order since last October, the fastest and most hard-core Abarth, the Biposto, is set to hit local road and track.
Here are 10 facts about the most extreme interpretation of a Fiat 500 serious money can buy:
1) The ‘Biposto’, or ‘two seats’ in Italian, is essentially a watered-down version of the 151kW/300Nm 695 Assetto Corse race car that took class honours at 2014’s Bathurst 12 Hour enduro.
2) At 140kW/250Nm, the 1.4-litre turbo four is 8kW up on the old 695 Tributo Ferrari thanks to a specific intake, front-mounted intercooler, and a dual-stage exhaust with titanium tail pipes supplied by famed MotoGP supplier Akrapovic.
3) Tipping the scales with a dry weight of just 997kg, its maker claims the Biposto will march to 100km/h from a standstill in just 5.9sec and top out at 230km/h.
4) Only around a dozen examples will be available to the Aussie market, each finished in an exclusive textured matte grey finish and wanting for a frosty $65,000, a $20K premium over the supplanted top-dog 595 50th Anniversary. That is, until you start ticking the option boxes…
5) Unlike the six-speed sequential Assetto Corse race car, the Biposto gets a conventional five-speed manual gearbox. However, a H-pattern manual with dog-ring engagement – for clutchless upshifts – can be optioned for an eye-watering $15,000…
6) The handling package is, by road car standards, pretty extreme: motorsport specialists Extreme Shox produce the suspension hardware, which offers adjustable damping and ride height, while both electronic (braking-activated) Torque Transfer Control and a self-locking limited-slip diff send drive to the front 18-inch OZ Racing wheels shod with 215/35 R18 rubber.
7) Braking, at least at the Biposto’s pointy end, is serious indeed: floating ventilated 305mm discs clamped with four-piston Brembo calipers.
8) A ‘Special Kit 124’ option, at around $5000, adds a twin-bulge aluminum bonnet – in homage to the classic Abarth 124 – together with a host of detail pieces made of lightweight titanium such as wheel centre caps and bolts and water, oil and fuel caps.
9) Add another $9000 to the budget and you can add the ‘Carbon Kit’ which, as you no doubt imagine, introduces carbonfibre to the mirror caps, interior door panels, dash fascia and rearview mirror.
10) While a titanium roll bar is standard, you can stretch the Biposto’s pricepoint to six figures by adding a ‘Track Kit’ which, for around $7000, adds a digital race data logger, carbonfibre shelled seats, four-point Sabelt racing harnesses and, why now, your own complete Abarth factory driver’s racing suit and helmet that can be inscripted with your name.
Get your free weekly report from the world of fast cars - subscribe to the MOTOR newsletter!