1962 Fiat Jolly
|Written by Sports Car Market|
|Thursday, 31 October 2002 16:00|
Launched at the 25th Geneva Salon in March 1955, the Fiat 600 was designed by Dante Giacosa. This successor to the Fiat 500 "Topolino" ("Mickey Mouse") mini-car was hailed as "an intriguing car with a future...[showing] how a rearrangement of the basic components can often result in a considerable saving of space."
With a water-cooled, rear-mounted in-line 633cc four-cylinder engine and all-around independent suspension, the 600 could carry four adults at over 65 miles per hour and sold for the equivalent of $944. It proved a huge success: at the beginning of the '60s production topped a million units and had reached 2.6 million by the time the model finally ceased production in 1970. Alongside the standard sedans and the forward control six-seated Giariniera-a precursor of the modern minivan-some of Italy's finest coachbuilders used the sturdy little platform of the Fiat 600 as the basis for a fascinating variety of custom coachwork.