Fiat Experiences

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Sir,

I have been grieved somewhat lately by the letters describing all the faults concerning Fiat cars. I am in no way connected with the Fiat Company nor any other motoring firm so can speak as a reasonably normal car user. Over the last 22 car-owning years I have owned around 16 modern cars at the rate of about 15,000 miles per year. Of these 16 cars the last seven read as follows: 1962 Fiat 1500, 1965 Fiat 150Q Estate, 1967 500 Fiat Estate, 1967 Fiat 124 Estate, 1965 VW Beetle, 1972 Marina TC, 1972 Peugeot 204.

I bought the first Fiat on the strength of a road test in an old 1962 MOTOR SPORT and found it marvellous apart from rust. All the other Fiats have suffered from this trouble except for the two 500 Giardinieras. I have had very little trouble from the remainder of the Fiats apart from this, and for punishment I think they are unequalled. The VW was trouble from start to finish, bodily and mechanically, and was the most expensive car I have ever had to run.

The Morris Marina TC, other than being dangerously fast due to diabolical steering, rattles like a bean tin, leaks like a sieve and feels as though 15,000 miles on the clock should see the engine off.

The latest is a Peugeot 204 which apart from its lack of performance (it isn’t meant to be a hot car) gives me more confidence in motor cars than I have had since I had the Fiats. But as soon as I can see a real change in the Fiat shape, I’ll go back to them—rust-and-all. Perhaps their guarantee has seen to that now.

I still have a Fiat 501, and a 500B for fun. What average/small four-door estates are available on the English market? It seems a pity to have to buy foreign to buy a decent car.

Fakenham. DAVID WILLIS.

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