Lot Number
218

1960 Fiat 600 Jolly & 1958 Fiat 600 Multipla

Sold For $242,000

Inclusive of applicable buyer's fee.

RM | Sotheby's - MONTEREY 2015


Chassis No.
Engine No.
372716 & 044304
405780 & 325087
  • A “match set” of desirable Fiat 600 variants
  • Freshly restored to a very high standard

1960 Fiat 600 Jolly

22 bhp, 633 cc overhead-valve four-cylinder engine, four-speed manual transmission, A-arm front and radius-arm rear suspension with coil springs, and four-wheel hydraulic drum brakes. Wheelbase: 78.75 in.

1958 Fiat 600 Multipla

28.5 bhp, 633 cc overhead-valve four-cylinder engine, four-speed manual transmission, A-arm front suspension with a transverse leaf spring, radius-arm rear suspension with coil springs, and four-wheel hydraulic drum brakes. Wheelbase: 78.75 in.

When it came to versatility, few automakers of the 1950s and 1960s could compete with Italian manufacturer Fiat. The tiny 500 and 600 models were some of the most popular automobiles in Europe, as they were ideal for economy-minded clients still rebuilding after World War II, yet they still had a stylish and almost universal appeal. Their charming appearance led them to be used as the basis for numerous special variations, produced by both the Fiat factory and private coachbuilders, and they were enjoyed all over the world.

THE FIAT 600 MULTIPLA

The Multipla was introduced as a “station wagon” version of the 600, and it was intended to “multiply” the serviceability of the 600 for either family motoring or business use. It was designed around the model’s rear-mounted, water-cooled engine, which prevented the use of a traditional square back with a tailgate. Engineer Dante Giacosa relocated the driver over the front wheels and provided two large side doors for loading cargo. Both the front and rear doors were hinged at the B-pillar for easy access, and the rear seat could fold flat to provide space for carrying goods. An auxiliary radiator was mounted in the front, and the chassis utilized wishbone and coil-front suspension, unique gear ratios, worm-and-roller steering, and a slightly larger fuel tank.

As the Multipla was distinctively styled and instantly recognizable, it became one of the icons of 1960s Italian transportation, and many remained in service for years all over the world. It is recognized today as the predecessor of the modern passenger van and crossover vehicle, as it combines the best assets of a commercial hauler and a comfortable family sedan.

THE FIAT 600 JOLLY

While the Multipla was all about practicality, the Jolly was meant for all-out fun. It was the brainchild of Fiat chairman Gianni Agnelli, who desired a small car that could be carried aboard his 82-foot ketch, Agneta, and be easily lowered over the side for local transportation at various Mediterranean ports of call. Agnelli’s yacht tender, an open-air 500 with wicker seats, cut-out doors, and a fringed surrey top, proved so popular that it was put into limited production by Italian coachbuilder Ghia. Through the Jet Age, it was the vehicle in which to “see and be seen” at the world’s most fashionable resorts.

The majority of Jollys were built on the 500 chassis. The four-cylinder 600 versions are considerably rarer, particularly in the United States, and they are fiercely sought after by Fiat enthusiasts.

A MATCH SET

The cars offered here were both acquired by a noted California collector of coachbuilt and unusual Fiats, who elected to have them restored in their present matching livery. The no-expense-spared restorations were recently completed by a well-known West Coast microcar expert. The matched pair of Fiats were both finished in a striking Salmon color with polished cream wheels. A wonderful “surf beach” theme appears throughout, including the additions of magnetic hula girls, various vintage-type surf decals, and even a period-correct surfboard with the Multipla!

Both cars have completely rebuilt engines and have been driven only break-in miles, allowing a new owner to have the joy of introducing this pair of charming vehicles to the neighbors while driving to, from, and around the beach.



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