Novitec Abarth 500: 212 HP Espresso ShotS

It's possible the excitement we feel about the American Fiat 500 introduction's just misplaced hope for the importation of the hot Abarth 500, which now makes us want the even hotter 212 hp Novitec-tuned version.

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Lacking new Fiat/Alfa Romeo/Lancia products to tool around our purple mountain's majesty, Novitec's mostly known around here as a Ferrari tuner. No more. As those brands make it back on their shores we hope the company will turn their eyes and wrenches towards American Fiats.

Let's start with the Abarth 500, which gets a power boost in stages to 164 hp and 212 hp from the 1.4-liter T-Jet four-cylinder engine. The NT4-Corse power kit bumps power by 77 hp using a "special" turbocharger, upgraded intake, larger injection nozzles, high-po exhaust, and other tuning.

Additional upgrades include 17-inch or 18-inch wheels, carbon fiber lip spoiler, and a few suspension tweaks. It's still a tiny Italian car, but where else can you get a 57% increase in power for $4,000?