Us kooky enthusiasts commonly clamor for a major automaker to pull the trigger on a mid-rear sports car that uses a FWD powertrain behind the seats. Decades ago, Fiat took a shortcut on that formula and made everything rear-engined. The 850 descended from the 600, which descended from the 500, Fiat’s OG rear-engine-d commuter. In the 850 Spider, the 843cc motor produced a whopping 49hp to haul roughly 1500lbs around. Imagine a (new) Dodge Charger with roughly 150hp for a comparable power-to-weight reference.
Regardless of its relative gutlessness, today’s Fiat 850 for sale has a certain charm to it. At first glance I mistook it for a larger 124 Sport Spider, given the family resemblance. It’s on offer from an Italian car specialist in Southern California with 100% eBay feedback. Going with the good vibes is the right mix for a fun project driver: excellent mechanicals and just good enough exterior to get a few “molto bene“s driving around.
1969 Fiat 850 Spider – $3700 Buy-it-Now or Best Offer with the auction ending Thursday afternoon.