Quentin Willson once said “why endure the pain of a three year restauration when for less money you can but a low mileage car with that most valuable of virtues – virgin originality”.
Well this example of FIAT's classic Spider certainly lives up to the title of 'original low mileage car'.
Bought by the present owner from a collector in Arizona - the driest state in the USA ! this car does not know the meaning of the word rust and has never even seen an accident (nor for that matter hardly any rain).
This 1979 46,000 mile example is as original as possible (except for the addition of a door mirror on the passenger side – and even this, the owner took the trouble to obtain an exact matching model – not easy – this is why the other spiders you see have non matching mirrors). The time of day clock has been replaced with an oil pressure gauge (an original Veglia instrument of course) figuring that it is more important to keep an eye on the oil pressure rather than the time of day.
The car has always been garaged and covered and the reason the paint and hood are so good is that the owner in Arizona used to take his car cover with him and cover it over even when he parked it at the shopping mall !
The car has never been repainted, the interior and carpets (even the over mats) are all original and so too is the hood – with its rear window still bright and clear over most of its area.
The original factory hood although a little ragged just along the leading edges, is watertight and works very well – the rear window too is almost perfect (the previous owner showed me a trick how to fold it so it will not suffer the usual damage of convertables' rear windows.)
I have the original bill of sale which shows the addition of FIAT alloy wheels which are in perfect condition as is the alloy steering wheel – both factory fitted options.
The car has a new servo and all of the flexible brake lines are new.
Exhaust, Battery and Tyres are all very good.
The car has factory fitted internal plastic wheel arch guards so there has been no stone chipping, also the thick layer of factory underseal is almost perfect with just a little coming loose above the exhaust silencer revealing beautiful shiny original red paint.
Although I have described the car as totally rust free, I must be honest and say that the lower edge of the round chrome USA bumpers has a little flaking chrome. This is not visible unless you are under the car.
The bodywork does have one or two very small 'car park' dents – these were in fact done during shipping of the car from Arizona. They are not scratches and the paint is not damaged but they are just tiny dents and as they are so small I decided not to spoil the original paint by filling and spraying. I think that with the new techniques of pulling out dents, these could be made perfect quite easily.
I cannot imagine that there is a better, more original car out there with such a low mileage.
The car is located in Southern France (near Carcassonne airport) and I welcome any inspection.
If you value true originality then I don't think there is another car out there with this pedigree.
This car has been in my collection for 30 years since its importation from Arizona. It has always been garaged and has covered just 6,000 miles in my posession since leaving the USA, bringing its present mileage to 46,000
The car has just passed its technical control with no advisories.
Call and I will give you the link for lots of photos.
Phone for a chat or better still, hop on a Ryanair flight and I will pick you up at Carcassonne airport.
Geoff 0033 468699119