German tuners Pogea Racing have gotten their hands way into the relatively innocent and wide-eyed Abarth 500, a hot version of the cutesy-chic Fiat 500 hatch. And what they've been able to shove under the bonnet is an astonishing 301kW in a car they call Ares.
Extracting big power from a small car is relatively easy if you’re not concerned about things like integration disintegration and explosions, but it would usually involve some sort of engine swap or something of similar magnitude. Crate engines are reasonably affordable options for the intrepid tuner, after all.
Here, though, that definitely isn't the case. Instead, they’ve secreted all that out of the same (essentially) 1,400cc turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine that’s in the stock Abarth 500. It’s bonkers.
We say ‘essentially’ because Pogea has replaced nearly every stress component within the block to survive operation - there are new forged pistons, new crank, camshafts, exhaust valves, and, lastly, a much bigger turbocharger.
That’s 301kW and 445Nm from a 1.4-litre, in a pint-sized 500. Those front-wheels do have a lot on their plate now, and so does the traction control system. Even with the near-overwhelming torrent of torque, the 977kg car is claimed to be able to accelerate to 100km/h in 4.7 seconds.
We suspect the transmission has also been swapped out for a unit that can take the new level of punishment. In top gear, Pogea says that it will only run out of breath once it hits 286km/h. Again, bonkers.
Other changes to the car involve the exterior and suspension. It has undergone a wide body conversion and now measures 48mm left to right, and modified panels are fitted to compensate for the extra girth. The tyres are said to be Michelin Pilot Super Sports over 18-inch wheels, though we spy sticky Toyo Proxes rubber in these photos.
There’s no way FCA will honour the warranty for this Pogea-fettled lump of lunacy, but the brave owners of the 5 examples that are planned for customer delivery may rest a little more soundly with the provided third-party coverage.