This isn’t your grandma’s Fiat 500 anymore

The Fiat 500 isn’t a car that you’d consider a fast and powerful one. In its raciest form, the 500 boasts a 1.4-liter turbocharged MultiAir engine that produces 135 horsepower and 150 pound-feet of torque. Those are decent figures for a car that can do supermarket or drugstore runs, but it’s not exactly a car that can make a statement in a hill climb race.

So, what is there to do if you have a 500 and you want to run roughshod over whatever hill climb course you choose? You take a page out of Roman Gurschler’s playbook and you turn your cutesy 500 into a 4x4 monster.

How did the Fiat 500 evolve into this monstrosity?

This Hayabusa-Powered Fiat 500 Is Exactly What the World Needs Today
- image 938678

It’s a very good question, but there is a method to Roman Gurschler’s madness.

Instead of treating his 500 with a simple software tune for the 500’s MultiAir engine, Gurschler opted for a complete engine swap.

The 1.4-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine was taken out and swapped with a Suzuki-sourced stroked 1.6-liter Hayabusa engine that produces 250 horsepower and redlines at a staggering 10,500 rpm.

The engine swap is the biggest change you’ll see in this 500, but the hatchback’s exterior also received a lot of modifications. Let’s just say that between all the new body panels and all the sponsorship liveries, you’d be hard-pressed to identify this car as a Fiat 500.

Speaking of modifications, Gurschler’s Fiat 500 also benefits from four-wheel-drive traction, allowing this pocket rocket to hit corners with a vengeance with no regard for life and limb.

This Hayabusa-Powered Fiat 500 Is Exactly What the World Needs Today
- image 938680

Arguably the most impressive aspect of this conversion is the fact that before it became a hill climb monster, as Gurschler calls his Hayabusa-powered Fiat 500, this hatchback was originally a slalom car.

There’s not much of a difference in style and purpose, but consider where this car came from to where it is now. It’s like a Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde transformation, at least if Mr. Hyde was really mean and meant serious business.

Check out the video of Gurschler’s Fiat 500 Monster tackle the Alpe Del Nevegal 2020 hill climb. Watch it and there’s a good chance you won’t forget this car anytime soon.

Kirby Garlitos
Automotive Aftermarket Expert - kirby@topspeed.com
Kirby’s first exposure into the world of automobiles happened when he caught Knight Rider on television as a five-year old boy. David Hasselhoff didn’t leave much of an impression on him (that happened later on in Baywatch), but KITT certainly did. To this day, Kirby remains convinced that he will one day own a car with the same ‘spirit’ as the original KITT (not the 2008 monstrosity). He doesn't know when that will be, but until then, he’s committed to expressing his love for KITT, and all cars for that matter, here at TopSpeed.  Read More
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