.:: FIAT ABARTH SE031 - THE EXTREME EVOLUTION of THE 131 ... ::.
Fiat wanted to give a sporty image to their 131 and Abarth fashioned it into a race car for the 1975 Giro d’Italia by taking a number of parts from the earlier SE030 that was being “cannibalised”.
The body of this car was designed by the Bertone Styling Centre at Caprie, and the mechanical parts were supplied by Abarth.
Compared to the SE030, the engine underwent a number of changes. After a few tests it was equipped with a dry sump, in that the reduced height of the 131 bonnet required a shallower oil sump. A night's work at the drawing board by two designers provided a solution through the adoption of pumps taken from an English engine design, the Jensen probably.
The car was equipped with oil coolers, placed behind the grille, and two water radiators arranged in series in the rear wheel fenders, the rear wing was taken from the SE027.
The gearbox, en bloc with the three-plate Fichtel & Sachs clutch, was anchored to the rear axle, with an overhanging gearset.
The tubular steel prop shaft used production parts, had Giubo joints at either end, and a double universal joint in the centre for homokineticity.
The car competed and won, with Piantà-Scabini, with a little luck (the leading Lancia Stratos caught fire during the last Casale Monferrato leg). It was then sold to a US buyer who re-equipped it with Fiat 131 Rally parts.
The original mounting points were left in place, however, and in 2007 the Volta company was able to reinstate the car to its original configuration.
''The Abarth projects after Carlo Abarth'' - By Sergio Limone and Luca Gastaldi - Ed. Automotoretṛ 2010