Welcome to the newest TTS feature: TTS Quick Pick! These posts are dedicated to cars that.. Oh let’s be real – these posts are dedicated to interesting cars we stumble across which we either a) don’t have the time to write comprehensively about or b) can’t be bothered to write more about because we are in the middle of binge-watching “The Americans” on Amazon. In any case, as part of our responsibility to bring more (any?) cars to you, we offer these short takes – starting with this pretty little 1971 Fiat 850 Spider which can be found here on CraigsList in Northern Virginia for $7,200.
Tag Archives: Bertone
My Dad’s 1969 Fiat 850 Spider is my oldest automotive memory. 850 spiders were also the cars that my TTS co-conspirator and I first bonded over, at the approximate ages of five and three, respectively. Suffice it to say, we both have a soft spot for Fiat 850s, especially clean, original ones like this which are essentially non-existent at this point. They were cheap when new, and most were driven hard (you sort-of had to) and left outside. Combined all that with their propensity to rust, like all Italian cars from the 1960s and 1970s, and you’ll find that nice 850s are nearly impossible to find, and the few you do find are usually out there for all the money. Find this clean survivor
on CraigsList in New York for a reasonable $5,995.
It is likely that those of us who were automotively conscious during the early 1980s remember the Fiat Ritmo (nee Strada) as little more than a Volkswagen Golf (nee Rabbit) knock-off, but with perhaps a little bit of Italian flair and the typical long arm/short leg driving position. And by-and-large, the perception would be correct. Then again, in some ways it just comes down to style: do you prefer Giugiaro or Bertone? Do you like more gauges or less? Are you feeling lucky? Find this cool little car here on eBay in Miami, Florida at $8,000 with no reserve.
As you may have read elsewhere on Totally That Stupid, both of us were introduced to sports cars by our dads who both owned Fiat 850 Spiders at the same time in the early 1970s. They would wrench them on weekends, and commute in them during the week. I have memories of our whole family of four (at the time) crammed into the Fiat, my folks up front and my sister and I sitting on the shelf behind the seats on a pair of silver speaker covers that I thought were actually seats. I also remember evening trips to the East Norwalk train station to give Dad a jump start. Neat little cars, but not perfect.
Find this blue example here on Craigslist in Sacramento, California for $2,200.
We’ve discussed before how convertibles were very much a dying breed going from the 1970s into the 1980s. While there were a handful of holdover cars from another era from Alfa Romeo, Fiat (badged as Pininfarina or Bertone due to Fiat’s official withdrawal from the U.S. market), and the like, it was widely believed that convertibles would soon be consigned to the history books thanks to ever-increasing safety standards from the US Department of Transportation and other safety Nazis. Still, a few mainstream manufacturers kept the torch burning for the convertible in the form of special, low-production convertible versions of their sporting coupes. Today’s case in point is the attractive Toyota-ASC collaboration on the Celica GTS Convertible. They were only produced for two years – 1984 and 1985 – with just 250 1984s hitting the streets, making this clean red car for sale
here on eBay in Katy, Texas for just $4,200 especially rare. There were about 4,500 produced for 1985.
From the 1950s through the 1970s, Alfa Romeo was best known for peppy four-cylinder cars like the GTV, Giulia, Giulietta, Duetto, and later the kamm-tail Spider. The cars were penned by great designers from the houses of Pininfarina and Bertone, and they were among the most classically attractive cars of the day with designs that still look both beautiful and functional even today. The DOHC inline-4 served owners reliably over the years in a variety of displacements and states of tune, culminating with the 2.0 liter in the 1970s, equipped with Spica mechanical fuel injection to help them meet U.S. emissions regulations.