How much is the timeless style of a Fiat Coupe worth?


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There are some cars that don’t age, or at least break the rules of time. The Fiat Coupe is one of them. Looking at the example above, found for sale at eBay through Motoexotica Classic Cars in St. Louis, Missouri, if I didn’t know better I’d peg the model year as ’04 at the latest. The Coupe, created by the designer the wrong people love to hate, Chris Bangle, would have looked unlike anything else on the road at the time. Hell, it would look unlike anything else on the road now. But it’s not from 2004; it’s from 1994

I start with the exterior of the Fiat Coupe because although unfortunately I tend to forget that this car exists until I turn on grand tourer 3I always, forever I think it’s newer than it is. I mean do you remember what cars looked like in 1994? The CoupĂ© was launched that same model year, with Fiat selecting Bangle’s design over Pininfarina’s. The latter’s interpretation of the abstract became the Peugeot 406 Coupe, and although the 406 is very elegant, it is not a Fiat Coupe.

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Pininfarina must have been kicking itself for not coming to the table with such a radical yet stylish release as Bangle’s. you alone to know he was jealous because the design house stamped its name in big letters right on the dash, above the vents. Pininfarina was, to be fair, responsible for the car’s interior design, though anyone who didn’t know any better would have assumed the entire car was his idea, considering the prime placement of the real estate badge. If you ask me, Bangle had every right to sue. He maybe he would have, Yes he was not working for Fiat at the time.

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The funny thing about this Coupé in particular: it also has a Pininfarina badge on the grille, as well as an Abarth badge on the trunk. My brief internet research tells me that Coupes were never sold with such trim. This Coupe was also reportedly imported from Germany to Texas, and its odometer shows about 52,000 miles, as does other Fiat Coupe with Texas license plates that starred this good price or no dice for a year and a half. Welcome back, old friend.

What else can we say about this Fiat? It has the two-liter, 16-valve inline four-cylinder engine with which the car was launched, which produces 137 horsepower and is mated to a five-speed manual transmission. The listing tells us that this example also has an aftermarket intake and exhaust manifold, though who’s to say what they actually contribute on the performance side. Later in the model’s run, Fiat added an inline five-cylinder engine developing up to 217 horsepower with the range-topping Turbo Plus. That’s the engine you’d want, of course, although sometimes you have to make do with the engine you have.

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The last time this coupe appeared on Jalopnik, it was priced at $13,000. A large majority of you said that it was too high, and I don’t disagree. Today it is auctioned. Four hours of bidding remain and 19 offers have been received. At time of writing, it sits at $5,100, still below reserve.

Buying a 30-year-old import from an Italian automaker is an objectively inadvisable financial decision; It’s like car time sharing. But what if this ultimately costs $7,000 or maybe $8,000? Few vehicles could match that attractiveness-for-dollars ratio, and that could mitigate the inevitable pain of ownership. single enough to make sense.


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