I read with interest the tales of woe from your correspondents, Hardaker and Bournes, who seem to have suffered a similar fate to mine with a Fiat 132 1800 S, as reported in your August issue. They, or anyone else have my sympathy should they contact Fiat (Brentford) with a complaint, and I endorse this by adding, don’t bother.
My 132, now some other poor soul’s burden, paid three visits to Brentford totalling seventeen days (while I hired cars), and emerged on each occasion with an identical tally of uncured faults, see August issue. In the meantime Andrews of Windsor, who sold me the car, backed out completely. The dangerous brakes and acute torsional vibration were worse than ever, and during as last prolonged stay at Fiat I decided it just had to go! Incidentally, the 132 was christened “Heap of the Year”, and plastered with displays proclaiming its miserable condition, during one of those rare spells on the road. The attention it attracted would have given Angelli heart failure! It arrived at Brentford on the last fateful visit so decorated (after featuring in our local newspaper and causing nearby Fiat dealers to withdraw their advertising), although the shabby reception that awaited me, led by Fiat’s chief tester, is best forgotten. However, a nice Mr Vallini did offer me the loan of a car at the end of the period when I arrived to collect my 132 (as they had not completed their attentions!), but I simply drove straight to Reading and part exchanged for a beautiful, wait for it, 124 1800 Coupe Sport, as arranged.
This coupe is how Fiats ought to be and stimulates fond memories of my faithful 125 S. With all tuning and servicing expertly performed by Berkshire’s main agents, Jack Hill, of Reading. It has recorded 5,500 faultless miles since July 1st, and is proving itself to be a brilliant car in all respects which is for me a !satisfactory finale to a miserable and very expensive Fiat interlude.
It appears that I am not alone in criticising certain of Fiat’s products and customer relations, as R. J. Hardaker and J. W. Bournes will confirm. As for the 132, don’t just take my word for it, ask any owner or agent who has been saddled with that nasty Fiat model.
Maidenhead. P. J. Doyle