June 10, 2007

Papa Mia, Thatsa Spacy Fiat Multipla

fiat_600_multipla_ad.jpg image: philseed

When I lived in Monaco [long story, remind me not to tell you], I would sometimes luck out, and the Hotel de Paris would park my 2CV with the bamboo sunroof right in front, next to the tiny Fiat 600 Jolly with the wicker seats. I guess they figured my car was like the Jolly which, in the 60's, was the car of choice for your yacht. There were very few ever made. Some ran around Catalina Island, where they probably inspired the Fantasy Islandmobiles. And Gianni Agnelli had some, but then, he owned Fiat.

Until I had a kid, the Jolly was the only Fiat 600 I ever wanted. Now with the family to haul around, I want the Multipla. A 29hp inline four? Dude, the thing's as powerful as my 2CV, but it fits six people. It was ahead of the MPV game by at least thirty years. It's freakin' awesome.

Pain in the butt to maintain, though, I guess, seeing as how they went out of production in 1965. [The Citroen, by contrast, stuck around nearly unchanged until 1990.] Also, I'm not sure if it has LATCH. Hell, it doesn't even have seat belts.

The Microcar Museum in Madison, Georgia has two 600 Multiplas [microcarmuseum.com]
Teeny-weenie Fiat Turns Heads [detnews.com]
Fiat 600 [wikipedia]

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