Collecting Cars

1969 FIAT 500L - ABARTH 595 REPLICA

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This Fiat 500 presents as an exciting Abarth 595 replica, in very good cosmetic and mechanical condition, and with a few contemporary details. Its engine is a 650cc rear-mounted, air-cooled two-cylinder, mated to a four-speed manual gearbox. The odometer indicates 46,470km (28,875 miles), though there is no service history to evidence this.

Manufactured for the Italian market, it is understood that this car spent its entire life in Italy before being imported to UK shores and re-registered on 1 July 2019. There are two previous keepers on the log book, and the seller has owned the car for the last few months.

Finished in glossy orange paint with Abarth detailing, this alluring Cinquecento exudes a street presence belying its diminutive size. The paint is in good order throughout, with only minor age-related defects apparent, and some damage visible around the front left wheel arch. The car rolls on 12-inch four-stud Abarth alloy wheels, which are in generally sound condition, but with lacquer peel apparent.

This 500 features the correct chrome bumpers and over-riders of the ‘Lusso’ model, paired with the wider arches of the the Abarth body style, which gives it a bespoke aesthetic. The brightwork is in great shape, as are the headlight and taillight lenses, which are free of fading or cracks. The Fiat and Abarth badges show a touch of patina in their finish, while the side and bonnet strips are in complete and undamaged condition.

The interior is believed to have been re-trimmed at some point in the past, and is described as being in fair condition with some wear to the driver’s seat. The front seats and rear bench are all currently protected by fabric covers. The original dashboard and trim switches are present and undamaged, with aftermarket speakers installed to improve audio quality. The factory-fit sunroof is a charming period feature, being manually operated and in excellent order, fitting tightly to the roof once closed.

The most recent maintenance was an oil change undertaken in August 2020. Prior to this, the car’s last service was in February 2020 by Motobambino of Lancashire at 28,800 miles. This consisted of a replacement rubber bush for the engine mount, replacement of the gearbox mounting rubber, as well as new front wheel bearings for both sides. A fault with the screenwash pump was also rectified.

The most recent MOT test was on 2 March 2020 at an indicated 46,462 km. This resulted in a clean pass with no advisories, being the first MOT the car has faced in the UK. This 500L wears matching 145/70/R12 Nankang CX-668 tyres all round. These are in very good condition, with ample tread remaining.

An eye-catching tribute to a 1960s Abarth 595, this Fiat 500L is a very well-presented example with retro chic in spades, and benefits from robust and simple mechanicals. It would make for a compelling summer toy – equally at home on the winding B-roads of Britain as being used as nippy transport to the inner-city coffee shop or office.

All UK-registered cars and motorbikes on Collecting Cars are run through an online HPI check. This vehicle shows no insurance database markers for damage or theft, and has no finance owing.

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