1998 Fiat Seicento Mia from UK and Ireland

Summary:

Brill, reliable, and cheap to keep

Faults:

Gear box.

Basic wear and tear; tyres, brakes, exhaust.

General Comments:

If anyone is in two minds about getting a Fiat Seicento, I would advise strongly on buying one.

Mine has been a brilliant car; I can't fault it.

I have owned one for 7 years, and it has started every morning with no problems, and not a bit of rust. I have truly had my monies worth out of it.

The only big spend I had was the gear box, and I had a second hand one; it cost me £250 pounds about a year ago, and no problems since.

They are little gems.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 12th February, 2008

1998 Fiat Seicento Abarth 1.1 from UK and Ireland

Summary:

Very cute looking, suited to girls more than guys!

Faults:

Passenger electric window doesn't always work.

Brakes started to not work as well and have to be slammed on when downhill.

Pulls back when accelerating in second gear, which stops when you put the clutch back in.

Occasionally have difficulty putting the car back into second gear.

General Comments:

Moderate fuel consumption - Uses considerably more petrol when two or more passengers are in the car, yet runs very very far with almost no petrol and no passengers!

Not much space in the back seats! For passengers with short legs only!

Body kit looks excellent yet is very low so cannot go over road humps over 20mph, about 17mph is comfortable.

Bad suspension, I have taken to trying to dodge drains for the sake of passengers comfort because you feel every bump. Or at least not pressing the accelerator anyway.

Not sure if I have power steering, certainly doesn't feel as if I do! Need to get that checked out.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 25th February, 2007

1998 Fiat Seicento Sporting 1.1 from UK and Ireland

Summary:

A lot of fun, but not reliable!

Faults:

The battery decided to stop working not long after I bought it.

The clutch cable snapped when I came to a roundabout.

Had to get a new sump as there was a bad oil leak.

The clutch decided to go most recently making a high pitched screeching noise and then deciding not to go into gear.

General Comments:

The car is very good looking, I have an abarth body kit on mine and it looks great.

Car handles great when driving and taking corners.

The little seicento is also surprisingly fast for a 1.1.

It doesn't take well to a load of passengers, still a great drive though.

The car is a lot of fun to drive, but very unreliable, a lot of faults within a short space of time!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 26th June, 2005

1998 Fiat Seicento Sporting 1.1 FIRE from UK and Ireland

Summary:

Unforgivable crap, made to look good

Faults:

Where do I begin?

The tires wear down way too fast because they are like polo mints.

Head gasket blew at 30000 miles.

Radiator rusted to a pile of iron filings.

The engine overheated and the warning light didn't come on until my engine bay was an exploding sauna.

The headlight power connector caught fire when it melted and shorted out. Unfortunately, it did not spread to the rest of the car.

The paint sprayer painting my car was having an off day. My example actually has drips at the wheel arch. Unforgivable.

General Comments:

I would like to begin on the bad points of this car to begin with.

It is made out of chocolate. The pathetic engine will explode and boil over for the slightest reason, due to the engine management system, which runs the car at a high operating temperature, the radiator will turn orange and fall to pieces and the tyres will wear out after a puny 15-20k miles. Then you will find them impossible to find at a reasonable price. Only Pirelli and GoodYear make the 165/55R13 tyres needed for the car, and they are £80 each. Then your exhaust will fall off; that will cost you the same as a Learjet to the Caribbean, because it is one long pipe.

But I agree it looks quite stylish if you like antiquated mechanics.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 28th July, 2003

29th Jul 2003, 16:07

Having owned a Cinquecento Sporting in the past (and thus sharing many of the Seicento's underpinnings), I feel I must discuss some points in your review. If I may quote, please:

"Only Pirelli and Good Year make the 165/55R13 tyres needed for the car, and they are £80 each" - I think you need to shop around some more. I can assure you that tyres are *NOT* as expensive as you say, and that more choice is available. I only ever fitted the original equipment 165/55 Pirelli P700-Zs to my car, and these were about £40. Have a look at www.mytyres.co.uk for more choice and reasonable prices.

Regarding tyre wear... 15-20K miles is good for these cars! Hard driven examples (cue guilty twitch!) can eat a set of fronts in 10k or less.

"Then your exhaust will fall off, that will cost you the same as a Learjet to the Caribbean, because it is one long pipe." - I've experienced this as well and must argue again here... The exhaust is NOT one long pipe. You CAN get just the rear box, as well as the centre section. The local tyre place quoted about £160 for a standard system from the cat backwards (both bits). Not too expensive, I think you'll agree?

"The pathetic engine will explode and boil over for the slightest reason, due to the engine management system which runs the car at a high operating temperature" - And what do you base this statement on? 80-90 degrees is the norm, like MOST cars. A well maintained cooling system can cope quite well, although I must admit that they don't tolerate neglect in this area (cue flashback of when the head gasket went!).

"...the radiator will turn orange and fall to pieces..." - Can't argue too much here. The location of the radiator is more the cause than any inherent bad design. Sitting in the offside front corner makes it VERY vulnerable to stones and other debris. Wire mesh helps, but you must not restrict airflow too much!

"Head gasket blew at 30000 miles" - Yep! They do this too, though good maintenance of the cooling system helps a lot.

Please, don't take my comments the wrong way. I'm hoping my experience will be of benefit to you and other Cinq/Sei drivers. I'd advocate joining ClubCento and registering with the Fiat owner's forum. I reckon you'll grow to like your naughty little misfit, once you know how to make it behave!

Kieran.