1973 Fiat 128 4 cylinder gas from North America

Summary:

Neat First Car

Faults:

Brake pads needed to be replaced.

All the rear lights would go out and then come back on.

Replaced several starters.

Distributor rotor disintegrated one day as I pulled in to park at the grocery store. Went in, bought a screwdriver, and troubleshot it (no spark? hmmmm...) in the lot. Try doing that with a modern car - course you probably wouldn't need to.

General Comments:

I bought this car from a service buddy - turned out he had gotten it stuck on the ocean beach and it was submerged in sea water, but never bothered to tell me "because I flushed it with clean water afterward". Got rid of it before corrosion started to show up.

Seemed to eat starters, but they were really easy to replace - it was right in the front bottom of the engine. I had such a hard time keeping it so it would start, I got rid of it. For a while, I had a habit of parking it on a hill so I could gravity-start it if/when the starter failed. Looking back, I was buying cheap rebuilt/repainted starters, no surprise they failed.

Neat smalll boxy design. Smelled like a Fiat. Spare tire was under the hood with the engine. Very cool compact engine compartment. It was the first car I'd seen with a transverse engine.

It wouldn't start when it was hot; took me a while to realize the car had a manual choke (!), just like a lawn mower, with the little pull knob on the dashboard. I really liked that once I started using it, it was much cheaper and more fun to operate than a computer.

No a/c, of course, but I didn't miss it.

I learned how to shift on that car, poor thing.

I also learned how to work on cars with that thing. With modern cars, I haven't touched a wrench in ten or fifteen years, but I did a lot of work on that thing back in the day.

Really neat car. I miss it, although at the time I couldn't get rid of it fast enough. Sold it to a buddy for $150, and told him about all the problems. He managed to keep it running for a few years at least.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 3rd November, 2006

1973 Fiat 128 1.1 from Egypt

Summary:

A car you can have forever

Faults:

Well many things to say as it's a 28 year old car. Mainly brakes, rust and steering.

General Comments:

It's a cheap car for its spare parts and repairing costs.

Sometimes its performance is good, especially in third gear. However, its spare parts, especially in Egypt, are not good and usually you've got to change the new parts faster than you imagine.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 10th October, 2001

1973 Fiat 128 SL 1.3 from Portugal

Summary:

One of the best seventies Fiats

Faults:

So many... I don't have enough space to tell all of them.

However. Mechanical, engine, gearbox, struts and MAJOR RUST PROBLEMS... a real nightmare.

General Comments:

If you don't have a hobby, buy a Fiat.

It's a good way to spent time, you can dismantle it, fix it, polish it etc etc.

If you like seventies street racers cars, buy a decent one and enjoy a lot.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 10th July, 2001

19th Sep 2007, 15:05

I purchased a 73 128SL new and was very disappointed with it. It shed it's exhuast system 3 times. At 38,000 miles the cam timing belt broke. This jammed a valve into a piston, breaking the crown. The piston crown rotated and punched the broken valve stem up thru the head. Since the valve stem would not compress, the force bent a rod and broke the crankshaft. This was just after Fiat abandoned the US market. The car was sold for scrap.