BK Micro Car Collection BK GROUP - Helsinki
Over 3.6 million Cinquecento´s manufactured between 1957 and 1975

Fiat 500 - 1963

The Fiat 500 (Italian: Cinquecento) is a city car produced

by the Italian manufacturer Fiat between 1957 and 1975.

Launched   as   the   Nuova   (new)   500   in   July   1957,   it   was   a   cheap   and   practical   town   car.   Measuring only   2.97   metres   (9   feet   9   inches)   long,   and   originally   powered   by   an   appropriately   sized   479   cc two-cylinder,   air-cooled   engine,   the   500   redefined   the   term   "small   car"   and   is   considered   one   of the first city cars. In   2007,   the   50th   anniversary   of   the   Nuova   500's   launch,   Fiat   launched   another   new   500, stylistically   inspired   by   the   1957   Nuova   500   but   considerably   heavier   and   larger,   featuring   a front-mounted engine and front-wheel drive.


To   meet   the   demands   of   the   post-war   market   which   called   for   economy   cars,   in   1949   a   front engine,   Fiat   500   was   released,   a   2-door   coupe   body   with   sun-roof,   this   was   later   complemented by   an   Estate   (Station   Wagon)   version;   both   continued   until   1954   before   replaced   by   the   all   new, lighter   body   car   with   rear-engine,   on   the   pattern   of   the   Volkswagen   Beetle,   just   like   its   bigger brother,    the    1955    Fiat    600.    Several    car    makers    followed    the    now    uncommon    rear    engine configuration   at   the   time   and   were   quite   successful.   The   Neckar   version   manufactured   in Heilbronn   under   a   complicated   deal   involving   NSU,   was   introduced   in   October   1961.[2]   In   Upper Austria the firm of Steyr-Puch also produced cars based, by agreement, on the Fiat 500. Despite   its   diminutive   size,   the   500   proved   to   be   an   enormously   practical   and   popular   vehicle throughout   Europe.   Besides   the   two-door   coupé,   it   was   also   available   as   the   "Giardiniera"   station wagon;   this   variant   featured   the   standard   engine   laid   on   its   side,   the   wheelbase   lengthened   by 10   cm   (3.9   in)   to   provide   a   more   convenient   rear   seat,   a   full-length   sunroof,   and   larger   brakes from the Fiat 600. Sports   models   were   famously   produced   by   Abarth,   as   well   as   by   Giannini.   An   Austrian   variant, produced   by   Steyr-Daimler-Puch,   the   1957–1973   Steyr-Puch   500,   had   a   motorcycle-derived   Puch boxer twin motor, a sports model of which was the 1965–1969 Steyr-Puch 650 TR2. Production   of   the   500   ended   in   1975,   although   its   replacement,   the   Fiat   126,   was   launched   two years   earlier.   The   126   was   never   as   popular   as   its   predecessor   in   Italy,   but   was   enormously popular   in   the   former   Eastern   Bloc   countries,   where   it   is   famed   for   its   mechanical   durability   and high   fuel   economy.   The   Fiat   500   has   a   Cx   (aerodynamic   resistance   coefficient)   of   0,38,   a   very good performance for its time.


Nuova (New) (1957–1960) The   true   new   500,   the   Nuova,   has   a   smaller   two-cylinder   engine   than   all   newer   models,   at   479 cc   (500cc   nominal),   hence   the   name,   and   producing   just   13   bhp.   This   model   also   features   a fabric   roof   folding   all   the   way   back   to   the   rear   of   the   vehicle,   like   that   of   a   Citroën   2CV   rather than   the   later   roof   design,   which   only   folds   half   way   back   along   the   roof.   The   Nuova   is   one   of three   models   featuring   "suicide   doors."   There   is   also   a   stylish   Sport   version   of   the   Nuova,   which features   a   distinctive   red   stripe   and   a   more   powerful   engine,   bored   out   to   499.5   cc   from   the original 479 cc engine, giving a very respectable car bhp with the same block. D (1960–1965) Replacing   the   original   Nuova   in   1960,   the   D   looks   very   similar   to   the   Nuova,   but   there   are   two key   differences.   One   is   the   engine   size   (the   D   features   an   uprated   499   cc   engine   producing   17 bhp   as   standard—this   engine   is   used   right   through   until   the   end   of   the   L   in   1973)   and   the   other   is the   roof:   the   standard   D   roof   does   not   fold   back   as   far   as   the   roof   on   the   Nuova,   though   it   was also   available   as   the   "Transformable"   with   the   same   roof   as   the   Nuova.   The   D   also   features "suicide doors". In   New   Zealand,   where   it   was   locally   assembled   by   Torino   Motors,   the   500D   was   sold   as   the   "Fiat Bambina" (Italian for "female child"), a name that is still in use there to describe this car. K or Giardiniera (1960–1975) The   estate   version   of   the   Fiat   500   is   the   longest   running   model.   The   engine   is   laid   under   the floor   of   the   boot   to   create   a   flat   loading   surface.   The   roof   on   this   model   also   stretches   all   the way   to   the   rear,   not   stopping   above   the   driver   and   front   passenger   as   it   does   in   other   models   of the   same   period. The   K   also   features   "suicide   doors"   and   was   the   only   model   to   continue   to   sport this   door   type   into   the   1970s.   In   1966   production   was   transferred   to   Desio   where   the   Giardiniera was   built   by   Fiat   subsidiary   Autobianchi.   A   total   of   327,000   Giardinieras   were   produced,   later examples having Autobianchi rather than Fiat badging. F or Berlina (1965–1973) The   F   spans   two   periods   of   500   production,   the   D   and   the   L.   As   such,   it   is   the   most   frequently misidentified   model.   Between   1965   and   1969   the   F   carried   the   same   badging   as   the   D,   but   the two   models   are   distinguishable   by   the   positioning   of   their   door   hinges. The   D   has   "suicide   doors": the   F,   produced   from   June   1965,   at   last   featured   front-hinged   doors.[2]   Between   1969   and   1972 the   F   was   sold   alongside   the   Lusso   model   as   a   cheaper   "base   model"   alternative.   While   the   F   and L   are   mechanically   very   similar,   the   key   differences   are   the   bumpers   (the   L   has   an   extra   chrome nudge   bar)   and   the   interior   (the   F   interior   is   nearly   identical   to   the   original   1957   design   while the L sports a much more modern look). L or Lusso (1968–1972) The   penultimate   model,   the   main   change   for   the   L   is   a   much   modernized   interior   (including   a renewed   dashboard)   which   brought   the   Fiat   500   up   to   date.   Greater   comfort   and   style   were provided in this new model for the new generation. R or Rinnovata (1972–1975) The   last   incarnation   of   the   Fiat   500   was   the   R   model.   It   had   a   larger   594   cc   engine,   designed   by Abarth,   giving   it   a   more   usable   power   rating   of   23   bhp,   and   came   with   a   full   synchromesh gearbox.   The   floor-pan   which   was   from   either   the   'L',   or   later,   the   new   126.   It   was   also   more comfortable,   but   more   simply   trimmed   and   equipped   than   before   —   the   fuel   gauge   was   omitted and   only   the   low   fuel   indicator   remained.   The   500   R   was   also   a   stop-gap   for   Fiat   prior   to   the launch   of   the   Fiat   126,   and   when   the   new   126   was   launched,   sales   of   the   old   Fiat   500   R plummeted. It was sold alongside the Fiat 126 for another two years before Fiat retired the 500.


Fiat 500 Jolly Ghia Carrozzeria   Ghia   made   a   custom   "Jolly"   version   of   the   500   inspired   by   the   limited   edition   Fiat 600   Jolly.   As   with   its   bigger   sister,   this   was   a   chopped-roof   doorless   version   with   wicker   seats, often seen sporting a canopy roof.


Engine 499 cc 2 cylinders Power 18 HP Lenght/width 2,97 m/1,32 m Weight 520 kg
Photos mainly by Matti Kreivilä. Historical facts and technical details of the vehicles provided by Wikipedia. Movies YouTube.