We’ve all had a car that just made us feel happy. It might not have been the fastest car, or the nicest, or the most reliable, or prettiest. But it made you feel happy. Happy to get in it. Happy to wave at people on the road driving their bologna and American cheese on Wonderbread sandwich cars, while you drive in something that warms the cockles. Wait. Cockles? And why would cockles be warm? Did they get left in the back seat of a rear engine Fiat? And what are cockles anyway? Some kind of vestigial organ that your mother never told you about? No, that’s not right. I know what muscles are and I know that Molly Malone sells them with cockles that are alive (well…she is a fishmonger) so they must be some sorta shellfish or crustacean. Anyway, where was I? Ah, find this 1966 Fiat 850 Sport Coupe offered for $6,500 in Westfield, NJ via craigslist. Tip from Cory.
Turbocharged cars are a dime a dozen these days. But way back in the early 80s there were only a few cars with the snail shaped glowing/spinning things under the hood and they were mostly American cars like the Monte Carlo, Trans Am, and Buick Grand National…but if you did some research you could find a little company on the East Coast called Legend Industries that would turbocharge your Fiat Spider for a few bones. The Fiat Spider Turbo was as close as a factory installation as you could get and it even came new from a Fiat dealer with a factory warranty and today’s example needs nothing, except a new owner. Find this 1981 Fiat Spider Turbo offered for $14,990 in Edgewater, FL via craigslist. Tip from Rock On!
From 1957 through 1970 Autobianchi used the Fiat 500 platform to build a cool looking minicar called the Bianchina, which I’ve been told is Italian for “makes the driver look huge.” And the truth is, you don’t need to be Kareem Abdul Jabar to look huge next to a car with a 72 inch wheel base and a 117 inch total length…in fact, Paula Abdul would look like a giant next to this thing. Which is, apparently, the appeal of the microcar, drive something tiny so you feel like a giant, I wonder if I could buy this with my HFSA money and claim it is a form of therapy? Find this 1965 Autobianchi Bianchina offered for $19,500 in Georgetown, TX via craigslist. Tip from FuelTruck.
I love back-breaking labor as much as the next guy…but building a LaForza from an abandoned chassis without a set of instructions is going to be difficult at best. But, the seller of this LaForza has 3 or 5 additional LaForza vehicles (and some extra parts) strewn about in his/her yard, so you might get some good tips from the guy/gal who abandoned this project for hopeless, which sounds like taking parenting advice for your newly adopted son from the parents who abandoned him in the first place, but free advice is free. Find this 1989ish LaForza offered for $1000 in Whitmore Lake, MI via craigslist. Tip from Zach.
This next car looks like it should cost way more than the asking price…and not in the way that the typical good deal looks on craigslist. No, this car looks like it should be collected by wealthy members of the elite driving clubs and not collected by the likes of people who frequent sites like Daily Turismo…errrr…not that we shouldn’t be driving nice cars, but so much of the fancy Italian stuff is so expensive to only be driven by the Jay Lenos of the world. Find this 1975 Fiat 130 Coupe offered for $14,500 in New Milford, CT via craigslist.
This next seller is asking a bucket full of cash for a Fiat X1/9, but to be honest I’m not 100% up-to-date with X1/9 pricing. These could be the next hot thing at all of the collector car auctions, but I do know that it’s got some wicked brown paint. And those bumper fangs are like bell-bottoms on a car. But the interior looks great and if all the gauges/electrics work, this could be a good little driver. Find this 1977 Fiat X1/9 offered for $8999 in Moorpark, CA via craigslist.
This next feature is probably the best ratio of used dollar to new dollar of any DT feature — including the half of million dollar Bentley Continental R. I don’t know what a box of 124 hand brakes for a Fiat Spider might have cost when new, but I can tell you that I want that box. Mostly because if I had a Spider, I’d have some spares. Lotta spares. The same goes for the handful of door panels, hoods, driveshaft support brackets…and oh…wait…that’s a box of Fiat 124 hand brakes, not a 124 count of hand brakes…well, this is still a steal for $1500. Why so cheap? Because the seller is getting out of the Fiat/Lancia business so he can concentrate on Maserati Biturbo parts….can’t find fault in that logic. Find this Warehouse Full of Lancia & Fiat Parts offered for $1500 (bring yer truck) in Santa Rosa, CA via craigslist.
The Alfa Romeo Giulia we posted the other day got me thinking that I should post more of the real OG Giulia. I don’t have anything against late model cars — they smell good, and are mostly reliable…but there is something about a classic that tugs at the heart strings. Plus this classic Giulia will continue to appreciate while the new Giulia will continue to depreciate, and if you have a problem with a classic you can usually fix it yourself on the weekend, a multimeter, and a crescent wrench…the same can’t be said for a brand new Giulia. But could you drive this classic Giulia every day? Maybe? But it might be a better weekender and get a Fiat 500 Abarth for a daily driver. Win win. Find this 1964 Alfa Romeo Giulia TI offered for $18,500 in SF Bay Area, CA via craigslist.
The Alfa Romeo Spider had a number of updates over its thirty year production run but the basic formula stayed the same over that time (1966-1994). The late series 3 spiders are not one of the more desirable versions with their rubber bumpers, porky curb weight, and smog-throttled engines, but this next example looks cool in black-on-black-on-black. Find this 1987 Alfa Romeo Spider offered for $4,400 in Miami, FL via craigslist. Tip from FuelTruck.
Is a late model Dodge Dart the perfect car? Not likely. It was launched (with supposed Italian DNA) as a replacement for the hideous Caliber in 2013 and was canceled by the end of 2016…hardly the fate for the perfect car. Since then Dodge has been out of the economy car game, and here is the funny part…I didn’t even know that the Dart had been canceled. This means one of two things — either, I live in a cave, or the Dart was so forgettable that zzzzzz…hey, wake up, this thing has a turbo and a manual gearbox. Can you even hear me with all the cave noises (bats and dripping water) in the background? Find this 2013 Dodge Dart Rallye offered for $5,300 in San Jose, CA via craigslist.