Found on Ebay: Fiat 131 – A pretty little liar?

Fiats are known for breaking, rusting, and generally not being very durable. So this very nicely preserved 1978 model is a remarkable find for someone who likes Italian tin. I personally have a thing for ’70s Fiats thanks to my 8th grade math teacher, who drove a dark red (rust red?) 128 four-door. But this 131 has it all over Mrs. Sharp’s old 128: rear wheel drive, a longitudinally mounted twin cam engine, two doors, and lots of Abarth visuals splashed around the exterior. The squared-off, generic 2-door-sedan shape may not be sexy, but it is definitely the box sexy comes in. Now, about all this “Supermirafiori” and “Abarth” stuff: I’m not buying it. The VIN tag identifies this as a Federal-spec car. There was no Abarth version offered; it’s just a standard ’78 Fiat SuperBrava. I find it interesting that in the classified ad for this car, the description makes nary a mention of the Abarth name. I guess Supermirafiori sounds more desirable and exotic than SuperBrava.  The seller does indicate that it has the larger 1995cc engine, so at least that emblem is appropriate. Even though this is a fake/clone/tribute car, I still totally dig what it is, and the effort that the past owner has put into preserving and improving it since it came to America.
It’s currently listed on Ebay with less than three days to go. This isn’t the first time it has been listed, however, and in an earlier auction, $9700 did not meet reserve.

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8 responses to “Found on Ebay: Fiat 131 – A pretty little liar?”

  1. Ol' Shel' Avatar
    Ol’ Shel’

    2nd-gen datsun 510s are wondering why this Fiat gets all the love.

    1. Peter Tanshanomi Avatar

      Because…Gusto Italiano!

    2. Lokki Avatar

      Because the bits of plastic that break off in your hand are so much prettier in an old Italian car than on a old Japanese car.

  2. dukeisduke Avatar

    I really like the 131 (hey, I’m in the sunbelt, where they don’t rust so bad) but this thing is ridiculously overwrought and overdone.

  3. Alff Avatar

    My Dad had one of these, same year. Bought it new, sold within a year or so. Nice looking, nice driving and very poorly built (yes, I know, no surprise). As I recall it wasn’t until a year or two later that these were marketed as “Super Brava”. We just called it Fiat 131.

    1. Peter Tanshanomi Avatar

      According to Wikipedia, the Brava/SuperBrava name was adopted mid-year ’78. And Happy Birthday!

      1. Alff Avatar

        Thank you! Given the alternative, it is indeed a happy birthday.