Our Cars – 1984 Fiat 127 Super Stella

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Well, this is a bit of a trip down memory lane. And it’s a departure from any “Our Cars” kind of post I’ve done previously, as the car on it is a bit run-down and frankly in a state of complete disrepair. It’s our old second car, a 1984 Fiat 127.

It’s the old story, road salt likes devouring second-rate Italian steel. The car served us reliably from 1990 to 2000, but as the rust creeped on it more and more, we replaced it with a Nissan and drove the Fiat to the countryside where it could retire. I learned to drive on it, and so did my brother, during summer holiday days with absolutely nothing to do. Later on, the Fiat was parked for the rest of eternity under a tree. Since it’s not going anywhere, you might just as well take a look.

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Eagle-eyed readers might point out the lack of snow on these photos. Right you are, as these were taken in the summertime, in the summer of 2010 to be exact. It’s likely the Fiat has devolved a bit after these shots.

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Our Fiat is one of the 1982-on facelift models called Stella, with plastic treatment similar to the early-’80s Argentas and Regatas. The plastic was concrete grey on our car when we got it, but apparently it should have been quite a bit darker when new.

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The surroundings are claiming the car, and it’s slowly blending into the flora.

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The cloth interior isn’t faring any better. I can still feel the smell of the car having sat in the summer sunlight on hot days, a mixture of Italian plastics, glue and trapped moisture.

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Still on its first round. We drove it for 50 000 km or so.

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The 903cc pushrod engine produced 45 horsepower, and ours was the coveted 5-speed “Super” version. Still didn’t get a rev gauge.

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It’s pretty likely the Fiat will remain where it sits, as is. It didn’t make any sense to restore it ten-fifteen years ago, and by now it’s far from that. But still, we didn’t have the heart to take it to a scrap yard, and it’s not likely that will be done anytime soon, either.

[Images: 2010 Antti Kautonen]

11 Comments

  1. "If your boss sends you to buy concrete blocks and you go to the auto parts store, you might be a redneck.
    If you find them there, your whole town is redneck."

  2. Doesn't seems too much rusted to me, after 13 years in a grass field. That second rate Italian steel didn't behave so bad, after all. I wonder if a Saab in the same placement and confitions would look much better.

    1. The rear wheel wells had football sized holes on them when I did some investigating at some point. It's done. And yeah, at the point of the photographing it had sat for maybe five years. After being retired from active on-the-road duty, it was hooned around the farm for a number of years without plates.

  3. Umm, that under-the-hood photo… What exactly is the brown stuff piled in the air intake? Oh wait, I think I know…

  4. Japanese steel of the same era would be no better. had an 81 toyota tercel in 95 that was retired because of football size holes in the rear wheelwells and a13" inch emmerson television could fit through the hole in the front floor.

      1. I think it came with a car magazine I bought. No other significance. The Fiat sticker proclaims "Quality for the whole price" and the other one says "Car – Everything goes around in them"

  5. Oh my, a SuperStella. Do you still have this? In case you're interested in selling it with a reasonable price or just giving it away, there might "a partial future" still available for this car.

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