We’ve had a little secret lurking in our garage for the past dozen or so years. Make that a very little secret as in a car that weighs less than half as much as a contemporary Fiat 500. In fact, the little secret is a Fiat—a 1967 Fiat 500 Giardinera made almost 53 years ago by FIAT S.p.A, FCA’s predecessor company. Ours was actually produced by Autobianchi, a Fiat vassal company, if you want to be specific. The Giardinera (“Gardener”) is one of the smallest station wagons ever built. Its two-cylinder, air-cooled 499-cc motor is mounted on its side like a fish that flattens itself while swimming. In the vernacular, this installation is called a sogliola, as in the style of a filet of sole. The configuration made it possible to have a flat load surface; something VW copied a few years later with its Squareback and Fastback, albeit with an additional two cylinders. There’s a tiny and not terribly useful trunk up front where the spare and the 5.6-gallon … [Read more...] about Classic Drive: 1967 Fiat 500 Giardinera
What cc is a fiat 500
West German NSU launched the Wankel rotary-engined Ro80 in 1967. Their revolutionary sedan won the European Car of the Year award in 1968, but also left bankrupt NSU by 1969. Almost half a century later, driving it is a unique and surprisingly pleasant experience. Despite its owner referring to it as "just a big Wartburg" with a smile on his face, this Ro80 is without a doubt the most fascinating car I've driven so far both technologically and historically. Let's start with the latter. 1969 While mostly known for their bikes and motorcycles, NSU also built its first car as early as 1905 but they couldn't turn the venture into a success and were forced to sell their car factory to Fiat in the 1930s. Then came the war to destroy what was left, after which the NSU had to focus on motorbike production to survive. By 1955, they had become the biggest motorcycle producer in the world, and also scored the Bonneville record of the first bike above 200 mph in 1956 with Wilhelm Herz and his … [Read more...] about What It’s Like To Drive Europe’s Last Rotary Powered Car
Nice Price Or Crack Pipe Is this used car a good deal? You decide! The original MSRP on today’s Nice Price or Crack Pipe BMW i3 was over fifty-five thousand dollars. Like all limited range electric cars, the i3’s depreciation is extreme. Let’s see if this one’s current price might make that downward spiral a fun ride at least. When you are close to perfection, it’s hard to imagine ways to improve. I know that’s an issue I face on a daily basis. That’s also an issue confronted by Mazda’s sassy little roadster, the MX5 Miata. Long considered the answer to all that ails you, the question of how to improve upon its near-perfection is one that has long stymied the world’s greatest thinkers. Having solved everything else, it’s rumored even Stephen Hawking was working on that quandary at the time of his death. The obvious answer to the immutable Miata question is of course, to add horsepower. And, as we all know, there’s no … [Read more...] about At $15,500, Could You Get a Charge Out of This 2014 BMW i3 REX?
Nice Price Or Crack Pipe Is this used car a good deal? You decide! The 25-year import rule allows a lot of interesting cars to be brought to the U.S. these days. With all those choices, someone decided to put the effort toward today’s Nice Price or Crack Pipe Panda. Let’s see if it was worth the wait. There are over seven billion people on the face of the Earth at present, give or take one or two. In that sea of humanity you, as an individual, may not matter all that much in the grand scheme of things. I’m sorry, but it’s true. You probably feel pretty special nonetheless, at least to yourself. That’s likely how the seller of last Friday’s 1991 Camaro Z28 1LE felt about his car too, seeing as he described it as being one of one due to its kit and color-combination caboodle. He seemed to price it accordingly, setting its asking at a cool $31,000. The teeming masses didn’t see it that way however, and dunned both price and car with an 85 … [Read more...] about At $7,500, Could This Grey Market 1991 Fiat Panda 750 be a Small Miracle?
Never had a chance to drive a Fiat Nuova 500? Are you curious? Well with this guide, you really get the feeling of what it's like to live with one of these gems.IgnitionThe operation was divided into three stages. First you had to insert the key into the switch at the center of the dashboard and turn it to the right. Then you had to lift the choke and carburettor lever on the left behind the gearshift between the two front seats, modulating the height on the basis of the outside temperature. It was a fine art. You learned it with practice, and it helped to avoid flooding the engine or causing it to malfunction. The third and last part was to pull the other lever up, which was connected to the starter motor. One turn, two turns, sometimes a small bang, the 500 gave a shudder… and that was it. The two-cylinder engine had started with its unmistakable sound. As the engine temperature increased you could lower the first lever. But if you did it too soon, the engine would hiccup and … [Read more...] about Guide to the Fiat Nuova 500