25th October 2005

Middle Barton Garage took advantage of a sunny day on Thursday 20th October at Turweston airfield for an inaugural shake-down test of the Simca Abarth 1300 Corsa recently acquired by one of our customers.
The car was restored in the USA and over the last couple of months we have been sorting out numerous issues of detail in order to make the car "work".  The initial test was very successful and the car is staggeringly fast for a 1300 and makes the most wonderful noise, even if we have had to fit an FIA regulation silencer.  This Simca Abarth chassis number 128 has no known history but is now in wonderful condition and the new owner will have it out and about next season.
I hear from GB Race Engineering that their Simca Abarth 2000, driven by Gareth Burnett, tested successfully at Snetterton and achieved a 1min 26secs which is excellent for a 1963 historic GT car using Dunlop L-section tyres.  The car achieved 194 bhp on the dyno and 130 mph on the straight at Snetterton.  I understand the Simca Abarth blew the door handles off some modern Lotus Elises' etc. - not bad for a 42 year old car!
The opportunity was also taken to test our 1000 TC Radiale, since we had recently rebuilt the transmission after breaking a dog ring at the Silver Flag Hill Climb - as always the car went extremely well and sounded glorious since it still retains its open exhaust!
Interest in the Fiat 600 based Abarths continues to be strong and we have just imported a wonderfully original 1964 850 TC Stradale for a client.  We are currently overhauling an engine for a 1000 TC Stradale which is changing hands within the UK and we have just taken in Phil Jones' TC Corsa for an end of season check-up/clutch replacement.  Phil successfully completed 9 hill climb events with the car during the season and here you can see him living up to his name "Phil the Speed"!  This car is now for sale and additional photos can be viewed on this website.  TC-M