Count us among those in the western world who take transportation for granted. It's tough not to when we can take our 390hp weekend car down the highway and get passed by people driving crew cab pickup trucks just to get lunch. Our society has really rallied around the crew cab pickup truck lease as the preferred mode of transportation, which makes it tough to imagine 1930s Italy, where aspirational transportation came in the form of something like the Fiat 500 Topolino.
Though small in footprint, these Topolinos are considered proper automobiles, as opposed to a form of cycle car. 16hp in the later cars meant that speeds of over 50ph were possible - about all that you'd really need before the extensive Autostrada system was complete. To us, it's amazing how these were probably viewed as favorably as a crew cab pickup is viewed today, and it's notable how much perspective can shift. We don't think the world should be driving Topolinos, but perhaps our 160hp Fiat 500 Abarth isn't so ridiculous, considering that it makes 10 times the power of its predecessor!
Year: 1954 Model: Fiat 500 C Topolino Giardiniera Engine: 569cc 4-cylinder Transmission: 4-speed manual Mileage: 21,874mi Price: $21,000 Location: Brookhaven, NY
UP FOR SALE IS A BEAUTIFUL 954 FIAT 500 C TOPOLINO GIARDINIERA IN GREAT CONDITION INSIDE OUT CLEAN AND CLEAR NY STATE TRANSFERABLE REGISTRATION, FOR OLD CARS PRIOR TO 1973 NY STATE ISSUES A TRANSFERABLE REGISTRATION, SAME AS THE TITLE; YOU CAN REGISTER AND GET A TITLE IN YOUR STATE THIS FIAT 500 C TOPOLINO GIARDINIERA HAS ORIGINAL 35,204 KM /21,874 MILES NUMBERS MATCHING 4 CYL. 500CC ENGINE MANUAL TRANSMISSION GREAT PAINT, CHROME, INTERIOR WELL MAINTAINED AND GARAGE KEPT RUNS, DRIVES AND STOPS GREAT
These are simple machines with simple components. A good Italian repair shop with an older mechanic should be able to keep it running just fine if you don't want to keep up with the maintenance yourself. This seems to be an excellent example, though an in-person inspection to check on rust and bodywork is advisable to be certain.
We love the convertible wagon body here - more space than the typical Topolino, but with an emphasis on transporting people rather than produce. These probably traded hands for close to nothing a couple of decades ago, but when the supply dries up, you end up paying to get your hands on a nice example. This could make for a really fun car to run errands in if you can swallow the price!