1978 Fiat 132 2000 Climatizzata from Italy
All driveshaft joints (2 universal, 1 rag) replaced (vibration on the driveshaft).
Breakerless sensor of distributor changed (hiccups at idle or low revs).
Rust on front fenders, 2 doors bottom, and on front fender-to-A pillar reinforcements.
I need only a cheap to buy car to go to the office, 20 km in total per day: in Italy, city cars have too high a selling price even if they are > 10 years old; on the contrary, large engine (for Italian engine size, 2 liters is large) sedans are depreciated more than their real value. I bought that car paying half the money of a city car cost, in addition I have power steering (no city car older than 5-6 years had power steering in 1995) and air conditioned (no city car older than 7-8 years had power steering in 1995). The only common element with a city car was the carburettor, instead of a more modern injection system.
Of course, fuel economy was about 50% less than a city car: it's hard to run 8 km/l in the city traffic, better on the open road, but I was not able to run more than 12 km/l driving at 80 km/h on the open road on a Sunday morning. It's better on the highway, where the long 5th gear was an advantage to run 10 km/l at speed 120 km/h: not bad for a large sedan of the '70s.
Reliability was very good: Fiat sometimes has reputation of poor quality, but I believe it is true only for production of the '80s and '90s. Up to the '70 their quality had nothing less than other brands, now celebrated for their reliability. This is confirmed by the air conditioned that I never filled up during 5 years of use, the electrical system (apart from the issue with the breakerless sensor, due to the breaking of the sleeve of the wire from ageing), power windows - even if slow, but it is quite common on old project cars - without any issue, no suspension/dampers problems, an absence of any issue which stopped the car, battery including.
Comfort was more than sufficient: the rear live axle generates harshness only on damaged roads and tram rails; the engine is a bit noisy, but proportionally quiet at highway speed. Performance was more than sufficient for its age, but in 1995 some city cars of 1.3-1.4 liters were quicker. Braking was good, a bit unbalanced (maybe stronger in the front), but it's hard to lock one or two wheels.
The only serious problem of this model is the rust: when 10 or more years old, it was practically impossible to find a specimen without rust, at least on only one element; rust on the fenders (the most common one) has never been a problem, but when you detect it on the structural parts, only an expensive repair can be done.
That's the reason why I stopped using the car: it's now in a garage, partially dismantled, waiting for its restoration. I'm waiting my retirement, only, to have sufficient time to spend for that honest and clever car who served me for 5 years and about 100000 km when it was already nearly 20 years old.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know
Review Date: 25th May, 2018