When Fiat entered rallying in 1970, its ultimate aim was to become World Rally Champion - and the 131 Abarth of 1976-1980 provided the machinery to make that possible. Within the Fiat-Lancia empire, the 131 Abarth not only replaced the 124 Abarth Spider sports car, but was also favoured ahead of the charismatic Lancia Stratos. By 1970s standards, the 131 Abarth was the most extreme, and effective, of all homologation specials. Compared with the 131 family car on which it was originally based, it had different engine, transmission and suspension layouts, was backed by big budgets and by a team of superstar drivers, and was meant to win all round the world.Not only did it start winning World rallies within months of being launched, but in 1977, 1978 and 1980 the 'works' team also won the World Championship for Makes, and set every standard by which Rally Giants were to be judged. The 131 Abarth was backed by a peerless team of engineers, so was there ever any doubt that successors like the Lancia Rally 037 and the Delta Integrale would eventually come from the same stable?
Graham Robson possesses a worldwide reputation as a motoring historian, and has been close to the sport of rallying for many years, as competitor, team manager, organiser, reporter, commentator, and observer; in more than forty years he has never lost touch with the sport. Not only has Graham competed in many British and European events, he's also reported on marathons in South America, and acted as a travelling controller in the legendary London-Mexico World Cup Rally. As a recognised authority on many aspects of classic cars and motoring of that period, he is the most prolific of all authors, with more than 130 published books to his credit. Over the years Graham has owned, driven, described and competed in many of the cars featured in the Rally Giants Series, and his insight to their merits is unmatched.
Table of Contents
Foreword IntroductionAcknowledgementsThe car and the team - Inspiration - Fiat - newcomers at World level- The 131 Abarth's importance in rallying -Facing up to rival cars- Homologation - meeting the rules- Engineering features - Motorsport development and improvements - Building and running the works cars - Blind alleys- Personalities and star drivers Competition story -1976 - 1977 - 1978 - 1979 - 1980 - 1981 - 1982 -Replacing the 131 Abarth - the Group B dilemmaWorld/major European rally winsWorks rally cars (and when first used)Index
Fiat 131 Abarth by Graham Robson
Used - Very Good
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