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Fiat 500 'Nuova' Sport

Overview

Produced: 1958-1960
Types: Saloon,2 doors,2 seats(Fixed Top)
Saloon,2 doors,2 seats(Short Folding Top)

In mid 1958, FIAT added the Nuova 'Sport' to their range.  It used the same body as the standard 500's, but could be identified by a wide stripe of a second colour along the body sides, following the general shape of the body pressing from the waistline to just under the side windows and along the bonnet.  The bright trim used on the ordinary saloons was no longer used.  Teardrop shaped sidelamp/flasher units set high up on the front wings of the standard production saloons were retained and so were the three ventilation air-intake slots under each of the headlamps.

The original Sport had a 'fixed' or solid roof that had three short slightly raised ribs pressed longitudinally into the rear end to prevent road 'drumming' at speed.  'Suicide' doors (i.e. front opening) with swivelling quarter lights and winding windows were fitted and these would be used throughout the short production life of the 'Sport' model.  A 499.5cc engine (bore increased from 66 mm to 67.4 mm but still 70 mm stroke) was fitted, which raised the power output to 21.5 bhp, giving the car a maximum speed in excess of 105 kph (65 mph). This was put to good use when Nuova 500 Sport models took the first four places in their category in the 1958 Hockenheim 12 hour race.  As with the original 500, the Sport was designed as a two seat and the platform behind the two folding seats would carry approximately 70 kg (154 lbs) of  luggage.  Unfortunately, the most often voiced complaint was that the windscreen wipers were always fitted to suit left-hand drive cars and therefore didn't clean the correct part of the windscreen on right-hand drive models.

In 1959, the Sport was also made available with a short fold-back sunroof over the driver and passenger seats only.  By that time, the three ventilation slots under each headlamp had been replaced by normal large round side/flasher lights and small round side direction indicator lights were now fitted on the side of each front wing instead of the large teardrop lights.

The 'Sport' was the last FIAT 500 model to carry the 'Nuova' title, which was deemed to be unnecessary now that the car was known and accepted by the motoring fraternity.

Specifications: FIAT 500 Nuova 'Sport'
Engine: Rear mounted, 2 vertical in-line cylinders with overhead valves, air-cooled four stroke of 499.5cc giving 21.5bhp at 4,600rpm.
Engine Lubrication: Pressure
Maximum Speed: (over) 105 kph (65 mph)
Fuel Consumption: 4.8 litres per 100 km (59 mpg)
Gears: 4 speeds forward with 2nd, 3rd and 4th in constant mesh, plus reverse.
Final Drive Ratio: 4.875 to 1.
Brakes: Foot operated, self adjusting drum brakes to all for wheels with hand operated mechanical brake to rear wheels.
Suspension: Front: Independent with transverse lower leaf spring and wishbones. Rear: Independent with semi-trailing arms and large coil springs.
Telescopic shock absorbers to all wheels. 
12 Volt electrical system.

Dimensions:
Length: 2970mm (9'9")
Width: 1321mm (4'4")
Height: 1325mm (4'4.12")

Source: Reg J. Prosser
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