Fiat 600 (1955 – 1970) Review

Fiat 600 (1955 – 1970) At A Glance


+Much roomier and more capable than the Nuova 500

-Not as pretty or iconic

With the Nuova 500, Fiat proved that it could build a genuinely fun small car that people wanted – and when it came to producing a larger brother to it, the company used the same ingredients to achieve pretty much the same result. The 600 had a monocoque body with two B-pillar hinged 'suicide' doors, which opened backwards and seated four. It was powered by a 633cc 29bhp water-cooled four-cylinder engine, which sat behind the rear wheels. This layout was excellent for space efficiency if not ultimate handling, despite independent suspension.

A full-length canvas sunroof became an option a year into the production run, and at the same time, the Multipla was launched. Arguably the Multipla was the first genuine people carrier (as opposed to eight-seater estate car), because it could accomodate three rows of seats or six people in the same footprint as a standard car. Alternatively, the two rear pairs of seats could be folded into the floor, turning the Multipla into a cute small van. Revised in 1960, to become the 600D, the upgunned 767cc 29bhp car gained front opening quarterlights and the bootlid with new cooling vents. In 1964, the 600D received front-hinged doors.