General Twin-Air Multi

Pandabloke

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Hi all. It's good to be back after going over to the 500L forum.

Myrtle (the Mutlipla) was traded in to enable me to acquire Elsie the 500L. I loved Myrtle with all my heart and even though she was a Nosejob, she was genuinely a better car than Bella, my old Uglybug.

All of which got me thinking.......

The main problem with her, as with most Multis, was the suspension. Creaking, groaning, knocking, thumping and rattling. To name but a few. And of course the old diesel. I found the old 120 multijet a lovely, friendly, driveable lump, with reasonable economy and plenty of umph when necessary, but the vehicle excise duty (tax, to you and me) was pretty high due to emmission levels. Not huge, but if only it could have been better.

And the demise of such a practicle and lets face it, loveable , old beast as the Multi saddens me. It was virtually unique.

So come on Fiat, work with me here.

Ok. Elsie, the 500L, isn't that much smaller in size than Myrtle. A bit lighter, yes. And she is powered by the wizard of engineering genius that is the 105 Twin-Air. And what an engine it is. Now then, let's remember that petrol Multiplas in the past had a 100 bhp engine, and the early diesels had a 105 bhp too. They were dragging around their own weight and that of the Multipla as well. And they went at least adequately.

So, just imagine if Fiat sorted out the suspension and stuck the lightweight 105 Twin-Air in a new Multipla. Same layout, three by three seating, don't change too much. Stuck in U-connect audio, sat-nav etc. just to freshen it up. Don't go too luxury, just bring it up to date a little. And keep with the same practicality, maybe a few more cubby holes, lengthen it by a foot if you must, but lose some weight if you can.

Having driven a Twin-Air 105 - I'm sure it would be up to the task. It ain't gonna happen of course, but if they could even squeeze another 15 bhp out of the Twin-air, I'm sure it would be viable. I'm sure I'd love to drive one, anyway.

Then I guess I just want them to bring the Multi back........:cry:
 

BikeDoc

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The original Multi (no, not the original-original), let alone anything newer, has way more c**p on it than I want, thanks.
If 'they' were to build a new one, it would obviously be lumbered with all that 'tat' that the manufacturers seem to think is absolutely essential/necessary.
They keep going on about how 'economical' they are, but when you factor-in how many cars are scrapped before they get to 10 years, it doesn't really wash.

It's all fine when the car's new of course, but after a few years when it all starts to fail, we (who can only afford to buy 8+ year-old vehicles) are stuck with ever-rising repair/maintenance costs, and ever more stringent MOTs :mad:

I'm regretting getting rid of my old VW Campervans more and more each year.
Nothing on them that's not needed for getting from A-B, dirt cheap and simple to maintain and run.
 

Eklipze3k

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Couldn't agree more, if my 126 had been working when I lost my job I think I'd have rather sold the Seicento. God I miss that thing, so simple and basic.
 
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Pandabloke

Pandabloke

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Absolutely, the simpler the better. My old 126's were the best cars I ever owned. However, I am sure that those who owned much older cars than that probably thought that too.

The joy of Myrtle was her simplicity. But that, along with many other things is what killed her. She didn't keep up with the competition.

I would loved to have seen the Multi made more reliable and more competitive within its market. It's virtual uniqueness is what sold it too me in the first place. And it's unreliability and spiralling repair costs which made me decide to purchase the brand new 500L rather than struggle on with her and ever increasing repair costs. She became too uneconomical to continue to use for my purposes, simple as that. And it was as cheap to buy new in the end, as to buy newer second hand.

With the Elsie (the 500L) I hopefully have the three years of relative security I am seeking (if of course Fiat honour any warranty claims.....)

It's always gonna be a pipedream, but I like to think there was mileage left in the Multipla. And despite treating myself for the one and only time ever, to a brand new car, I do miss Myrtle....... :cry:
 

BikeDoc

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. . . The joy of Myrtle was her simplicity. . .
Simplicity? :eek:

My VWs (and my Daughter's current '71 Beetle), have a wiring diagram that fits on just one page of a Haynes Manual, and there's an awful lot of spaces between the lines/components on that page.
Haynes don't do a manual for the Multi (as we know :rolleyes:), but if they did, I'd expect it to be similar to my old ('92) Espace, which took up 7+ pages if I recall.

I often wonder just how economical a modern car would be if it wasn't lumbered with the weight of all the unnecessary (IMO) stuff they cram into them; Air-con, Power-steering, ABS, Air-bags, Traction control, electric windows/sunroofs/doors/boots/locking/seat-heating, Sat-nav, etc, etc.

'71 Beetle = 850kg
'13 Golf = 1500kg (with all the 'trimmings)

Manufacturers are always harping on about how they've shaved a few kilograms off last year's model to improve fuel economy, imagine if they could lose hundreds!
 

Ulpian

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The trouble is your list contains - excepting sunroof and heated seats :D - pretty much everything that I want in a new car. Not even want, demand. A car without A/C can be a dangerous place when misting up is a possibility for example, and who wants to drive along in a baking greenhouse, or with the windows open at sixty?

Air-con, power steering, Bluetooth, remote locking, satnav.... and that doesn't include the safety aids.

Sorry, but the first cars didn't have front wheel brakes, self-starters or windscreens, so how far back should we go in looking for simplicity I wonder?
 

BikeDoc

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I'd just like to have the choice, rather than have all that stuff forced upon me (n)
You don't need Air-Con to prevent misting, just a decent heater.
Decent vents can work as well as having windows open.

Safety aids?
They've been cramming cars with these so-called safety aids for decades, yet there are still thousands of 'accidents' every year, funny that :rolleyes:

Funniest thing I've ever seen is that self-braking volvo slamming into the back of the lorry in the test video . . .
 

Ulpian

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You can't demist a car quickly without an A/C in the winter, and it doesn't matter whether the heater is on or not. Getting rid of the fug in seconds and keeping the screen clear has to be better than the reaching forwards with a rag of days of yore.

A/C isn't compulsory as yet, but once you've had it you wouldn't be without.

And deaths on the road have never been lower than at present, while we have the greatest number of cars, so safety aids must be of some help.
 

widemouthfrog

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Most 'safety aids' don't prevent accidents (the number of muppets on the road seems to be increasing to me) - they just make the accident more survivable. Have a read of this:

http://www.google.co.uk/url?sa=t&rc...sg=AFQjCNHAJhq_0sfYZ_rd7x49YUWDFtb3hA&cad=rja

The number of deaths per billion km shows that things are better now than in the 80's (and probably before that as well). It also shows that you're far safer in a car than on foot....

As an aside, the UK is a very safe place to be a road user. Death rates here are the lowest in Europe and a quarter of those in the USA.

I agree with Ulpian - A/C and heated windscreens are great passive safety aids.
 

BikeDoc

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How much lower are they though, compared to when cars weren't filled with these 'safety' aids?
Surely there should be virtually zero accidents/casualties by now, given how supposedly 'safe' modern vehicles are?

Or is it as I suspect, that the 'safer' you make a car, the less care the driver will take?
Which is fine for them, in their crumple-zoned, air-bagged, roll-caged cars, but not so good for those around them (pedestrians, cyclists, Motorcyclists, etc).
I don't know how long you've been driving, but I started ('78 Bikes, '83 cars) before all these things were the norm, and I don't see/feel any real improvement, certainly when I'm riding.

They keep throwing money and technology at car 'safety' (which can be recouped by the ridiculous amount they charge for new cars), when what's really needed (in my opinion) is better driver training (which would cost the gov' too much).
The driving test hasn't really changed that much since it was introduced, it's still far too easy to pass, and when you see what a lot of driving instructors do when they're driving, it's fairly obvious to me why the standard of driving in the UK is so appalling :mad:

For example, my eldest Daughter's instructor spent 40 minutes of one 45 min lesson texting!
I regularly see them using mobiles (when driving or 'instructing'), or just driving with one in their hand, and many of them don't even know simple things, like what lights to have on for various conditions :bang:
How the hell are their pupils supposed to learn from them?


Apologies for the mini-rant, but this is something I feel very strongly about :eek:
 
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Pandabloke

Pandabloke

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This is the great thing about fiatforum. A simple comment about a fictional car can lead to such marvellous debate.

Just to put my final two pennyworth in, my fictional Twin-Air Multi would have as standard, Air-con (not climate control), reversing sensors and at least two permanently live 12v sockets in the front.

(I was going to say blutooth as well, but I don't want BikeDoc to set fire to it as soon as it reaches the forecourt! ;))
 
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Ulpian

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I prefer A/C to climate too: funny that.

And I agree that driving standards have fallen. People seem to have no concern for signalling, lane discipline, looking in mirrors, or anything that impacts on other people. I wonder if the I-Me generation has been brought up to be so totally self-obsessed with their own small electronic worlds that the outside reality of real flesh and blood people sharing their space is beyond their ability to compute.

I do think that drivers, and pedestrians and cyclists for that matter, were more careful in the fifties when I began cycling as a child. There were TV advice ads about always wearing something white at night, crossing at crossings etc., and the police would stop a cyclist if his (my!) rear light bulb had failed on their bike. How many cyclists now wear black and cycle wherever they like with no lights at all! And the police...? They are hanging around outside all the nightclubs dealing with the hoards of drunken kids who later pack into Saxos or Puntos :eek: with one reasonably - I hope - sober driver and then dart off home using the road like some sort of video game. And the late night taxi drivers... ;) :eek:

So I need all the safety aids I can get. Deaths have decreased hugely. In the twenties more people died on the roads, which had about two million vehicles, than do now, and don't tell me safer cars and roads etc. haven't helped. But driving is still very fraught.

Certainly there are more people everywhere now and that doesn't help, but then when I was born in 1950 there were only 2.5 billion people on the planet, and now there are 7billion.

It shows believe me!
 
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slobo

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Where live, up until a few years ago, everyone was driving old fiat 126's 500's or Yugo's, My neighbor had a Wartburg with cable brakes!! Then, quickly, people started driving Audi's and BMW's and they think because they have all the driving aids they are bulletproof!
I think the accident rate here has never been so high.
I haven't been in a big crash since I rolled my Ford Anglia, so I have never experienced how well airbags or seatbelts or soft dashboards work.
But, I love A/C, power steering and ABS.
Like life, Experience and training is always best. But you can't tell the younger ones that. :)
 
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