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Author Topic: How do I know what spec my Abarth is?  (Read 496 times)

Offline EvansK98

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How do I know what spec my Abarth is?
« on: May 03, 2020, 08:58:37 pm »
I'm new to this forum and Abarth ownership in general, having only owned my Abarth 500 for a couple of months after having a MiTo for 4 years, so this may very well be a silly question. I've been wondering if there's any way to tell whether my 500 has had any extras fitted by the previous owner.

It's a 59 plate that has had some modifications fitted by the previous owner including Team Dynamics Pro Race 1.2 alloys and the Magneti Marelli Bombardone exhaust. However it also has some features which were described to me as being from a different spec despite not being advertised or sold as anything other than a stock 500 T Jet, and has no stamps in the handbook to suggest it had dealer kits fitted. Some of the features in question include red suspension springs (lower on the front than the rear), BMC air filter and bonnet sticker, Brembo brake pads and Koni shock absorbers with Abarth logo as well as an esseesse badge on rear all of which I believe have been fitted by the previous owner as I don't have the receipts for any of it besides the exhaust. My car had new discs fitted all round about 2 months before I bought it and they are not drilled so not an ss; as far as I can tell with an untrained eye it is just a factory spec.

TLDR; How do I know whether my 500 been fitted with any of the "elaboration kits" sold by Abarth?

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    Offline android_808

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    Re: How do I know what spec my Abarth is?
    « Reply #1 on: May 05, 2020, 12:28:14 pm »
    I had my '59 fitted with the Esseesse from day 1.  After several months I got sent a certificate from Abarth confirming the transformation.  I was told about it when I bought it and had to double check the kit number on the supplied crate so that it would be correctly represented on the certificate.  It took some months but eventually got it.  I no longer have the car so put the certificate with the paperwork when I sold it for the new owner.  How long this process in place and if it is available for any of the other kits,  I don't know.

    The fact that you have Team Dynamics wheels and Non-SS brake discs, makes me think its been modified bit at a time by the owner, but maybe they just changed them out.

    Offline EvansK98

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    Re: How do I know what spec my Abarth is?
    « Reply #2 on: May 05, 2020, 01:43:33 pm »
    Thanks for your reply! I did wonder what the process was for getting authentication from Abarth that you had the esseesse kit installed. I didn't think mine had the esseesse kit due to not having any of the paperwork to prove it, or at least that it definitely didn't have any kits installed day 1 like yours did. Rather, as you say, I get the feeling the previous owner gradually installed some of the parts featured on the ss themselves instead of through an official dealer. Am I right in thinking that other than the alloys and paperwork the easiest way to identify a genuine 500 ss at a glance would be the brake discs?

    Offline android_808

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    Re: How do I know what spec my Abarth is?
    « Reply #3 on: May 05, 2020, 08:14:18 pm »
    Quote
    In line with the Abarth concept of preparation, the “esseesse” kit uses perforated and ventilated front brake discs (diameter 284mm x 22mm), perforated rear brake discs (diameter 240mm x 11mm, high-performance front brake pads, springs that are specially lowered in comparison to the original car and Abarth “esseesse” 7″ x 17″ ET35 alloy wheels, finished in white or titanium, teamed with 205/40 ZR 17 Pirelli Pzero tyres.

    The 500 Abarth “esseesse” kit is topped off by the specific air filter powered by BMC, four tyre pressure sensors, “esseesse” badges for the engine hood and the tailgate, and a specially designed, highly original key cover.

    The early ones like my car had to have the ECU replaced to up the power from 135 to 160, so I have the original ECU in the crate along with everything else removed.  Obviously you can't see that.

    Springs, it makes 10mm difference IIRC, so again not all that obvious.

    Every car I've had was supposed to have Pzeros fitted but none have.  My '59 Esseesse had Pilot Sport Exalto something or other, the '65 180 Comp and '69 Esseesse have Pilot Sport 2 or 3, I can't remember without going to have a look but I think it's PS3.  There are some fake Esseesse style wheels on eBay, usually I find the outer rim to be the giveaway.

    The "highly original key cover", never happened in UK to my knowledge.  The dealer gave me a set of the "Race"  key covers as compensation, which I have stored....somewhere.  From what I recall it was just the normal black key but with Esseesse written up one side in red.

    What makes it more confusing? The Esseesse wheel package. Introduced after the Turismo and Comp, its basically just the wheels and badges.

    Offline android_808

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    Re: How do I know what spec my Abarth is?
    « Reply #4 on: May 05, 2020, 08:32:05 pm »
    Also, the tyre pressure monitor.  Basically a special chunky looking dust cap that needs a tool to remove.  That had a little indicator in the end that went white when OK, red when low.  If you could get them just right as they were a pain. Used to screw on with tool, push down on the end and turn the top as if loosening without the tool.  You'd hear it click and then let go, if you were lucky it'd stay white.  If not you just kept repeating.

    Finally, if you have to get the tyres replaced, check the dimensions of your valve.  I've had someone change them before and put the wrong length valve on so they stuck out further than the edge of the Esseesse wheel.  I just make a note to tell them it needs shorter/stubby valve stems.

    Offline EvansK98

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    Re: How do I know what spec my Abarth is?
    « Reply #5 on: May 06, 2020, 01:33:31 pm »
    That sounds confusing af, definitely liking the whole host of extras that the original esseesse kit offered. I have a tool that looks like it was for removing some oddly shaped dust caps, whether that was from the tyre pressure monitor I couldn't say, but as mine was fitted with aftermarket alloys if the pressure monitor was on the original wheels then they've ended somewhere else!
    Thanks for all the advice though! Very tempted to keep an eye out for some genuine esseesse wheels and maybe the brake discs too just to make it look more believable.