Fiat Cin­que­cento

EN­GINE 903cc/4-cyl/OHV POWER 41bhp@5500rpm TORQUE 48lb ft@3000rpm MAX­I­MUM SPEED 83mph 0-60MPH 20.3sec FUEL CON­SUMP­TION 35-42mpg TRANS­MIS­SION FWD, fice-speed man­ual MoT 12 months ODOMETER 16,110 miles

Classic Car Weekly (UK) - - This Week - Theo Ford-Sagers

WHAT’S IT LIKE TO DRIVE?

This Fiat is hard to fault from be­hind the wheel, as you would hope from a car with such a low mileage. The teeny 903cc en­gine fires will­ingly from cold (no man­ual choke to worry about), pulls with all its might, and idles hap­pily without over­heat­ing. The servo-as­sisted brakes bring the car to a halt without un­due ef­fort or swerv­ing and the gears select smoothly, if a lit­tle slop­pily. Re­freshed gear link­ages may help here. We tested the car to 60mph and de­tected no wob­bles or noises to trou­ble the next owner. Ac­cept its lim­i­ta­tions and you’ll have a very re­ward­ing drive.

BODY­WORK CHECK

We could find no dam­age or cor­ro­sion on the gal­vanised body, but close in­spec­tion re­veals small stone chips on the near­side door, rear quar­ter­panel and bon­net. There are also a few very light scuff marks on the front and rear bumpers, but all these would be easy to rem­edy if you want a con­cours fin­ish. Three of the 13in al­loy wheels are kerbed but all four wear match­ing Ac­cel­era 165/55 tyres show­ing plenty of tread and even wear. The glass and lights are in fine or­der.

HOW’S THE IN­TE­RIOR?

There’s a small amount of wear to the bol­ster on the back of the driver’s seat, but apart from that the in­te­rior is gen­er­ally in lovely con­di­tion. The blue fab­ric seats and door pan­els show no sig­nif­i­cant signs of fad­ing or pilling, and the mats, car­pets and plas­tic dash are un­dam­aged – in short, there’s no ev­i­dence of rough use or wa­ter ingress any­where in here. On-board equip­ment is pretty lim­ited, ex­tend­ing no fur­ther than a rear win­dow wash/wipe, rear foglamp, heated rear win­dow, heater and an af­ter­mar­ket ra­dio/CD player – there isn’t even a glove­box – but it’s all fully op­er­a­tional.

UN­DER THE BON­NET

The com­pact en­gine bay con­tin­ues the clean and un­mo­lested theme demon­strated else­where on this car. There’s no sign of any rust, and nei­ther leaks nor per­ish­ing ma­te­ri­als around the en­gine it­self (rather un­usu­ally, even the in­su­la­tion against the bulk­head is in­tact and looks smart). Oil, coolant and hy­draulic fluid are all topped and clean, and there ap­pears to be a new hose fit­ted be­neath the ra­di­a­tor, as well as a re­cent air fil­ter. Re­ceipts are sadly lack­ing from the ser­vice his­tory, but the log­book shows seven stamps ver­i­fy­ing the low mileage, the lat­est stamp be­ing in 2015 at 14,515 miles. There are no ad­vi­sories on the lat­est MoT.

THE CCW VIEW

Is the Cin­que­cento a mod­ern clas­sic, or noth­ing more than a quirky toy? Ei­ther way, this lit­tle Fiat of­fers a perky and hope­fully re­li­able way into nofrills mo­tor­ing. It’d be a shame to put too many miles on this par­tic­u­lar ex­am­ple, but for an oc­ca­sional whirr through the coun­try­side with a pic­nic, it’s an ideal can­di­date.

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