Tag Archives: 131

1979 Fiat Brava

It’s going on almost two years since Fiat reentered the US new car market. While sales got off to a slower start than expected, there has been enough of a warm reception for the company to release a second model, the 500L, aimed at those seeking a bit larger of a package than the 500. Before Fiat left the US market in the early 1980s though, their larger offering was a bit more car like than crossover, the 131 which was later renamed the Brava. A decided square, three box design, the Brava was offered in four-door, estate and a two-door coupe variant, like the one we see here for sale in Washington state.

Year: 1979
Model: Brava
Engine: 2.0 liter inline-4
Transmission: 5-speed manual
Mileage: 168,000 mi
Price: Reserve auction

CLICK FOR DETAILS:1979 Fiat Brava

Arizona garaged survivor. No hit body taken to bare metal. Base coat clear coat original color paint. Original interior in great shape. No crack dash. New headliner and sunroof. Front seats need to be reupholstered. 2 Lt engine with 1800 head. 5 Speed, power disc brakes, rack and pinion steering

New:
Clutch/cable/bearing
Braking system
Cooper CS4 radials
Alignment
Exhaust System
Carpet
Wheel bearings
Front Spoiler
Momo Steering Wheel

Comes with super tuner stereo, needs speakers. Drives great, tight, smooth and peppy. I can be reached by phone for questions/additional information.

Tim
206-940-1524

Finding a 131 or Brava in good shape these days is near impossible, as many succumb to rust and other mechanical maladies that put them out of commission. This one is a survivor, however, and is thankfully equipped with the manual gearbox to get the most out of the twin cam, four cylinder engine. The color here is also one that doesn’t seem dated. The front seats could certainly benefit from a professional retrim and the aftermarket sunroofs leaves me a bit uneasy, as they can often leak. But this is a very presentable Brava and a great classic Fiat for those not necessarily into the more popular 124 Spider or mid-engine X1-9. Given the condition and rarity, this one may push close to the $4,000 mark and is a nice jumping off point if you were feeling industrious and sought to build an 131 Abarth clone.

-Paul

1980 Fiat Brava

Towards the end of Fiat’s original run in the US market in the early 1980s, the manufacturer had several offerings in showrooms. The newly introduced Strada (known as the Ritmo elsewhere), the mid-engined X1/9 and Fiat 124 Spider. While the Strada would be discontinued after Fiat’s exit in 1982, the X1/9 would continue on as the Bertone X1/9, which the 124 Spider would be sold under the Pininfarina badge. There was one other holdout in the US market until the pullout, the 131, later known as the Brava.

Offered as a two or four door sedan and four door wagon in the US, these weren’t particular flashy vehicles, but their tidy styling and Italian DNA gave buyers seeking something a little less boring in the family car segment. Not only that, the 131 went on to win the World Rally Championship three times; an accomplishment few of its competitors could boast about. This Brava for sale in New York is a rare chance to get one of these cars in good condition.

1980 Fiat Brava

For sale is my 1980 Fiat Brava sedan. The car is completely stock and has only 51,670 miles. The only item added to the car is an AM/FM cassette radio I installed in the car back in 1993 (I still have the original radio plastic blank). This FIAT drives very well and is in wonderful condition. I have the original manual, brochure, keys, pictures from the original owner and maintenance records. It has Pirelli tires which are in great condition, original wheels, jack and tool kit.

History......I purchased the car in 1993 from a person in Michigan. I believe I am the second owner. It had 33,000 miles on it and was completely original. The car had been rust-proofed when it was bought from the dealer in Michigan. Domenick's Foreign Cars of White Plains inspected the car before my purchase. That inspection in 1993 revealed some previous body work to the right rear quarter panel and appeared to be an excellent repair (I have the body shop invoice!). Although I put 18,000 miles on it, the car has been driven about 500 miles in the last 10 years. It has been garaged since 1993. In the last 200 miles, I did extensive work to the mechanicals....complete engine tuneup, transmission serviced, replaced suspension, brakes and replaced various lines, hoses and wires. In November 2011, the car was repainted for the first time in its original color using a 2-stage urethane process. I have kept this car in very good order.

Items of attention.....The timing belt could be replaced as it is over 5 years old. The headliner is sagging a little and I considered replacing it myself but discovered a local shop that replaces headliners. If I keep the car I will get this done. The A/C needs to be recharged or converted. The driver seat left side seam has come apart. The interior rear deck lid needs repair. This is a rare 1980 Fiat Brava in fantastic condition.

Even though they are rare, the 131 and Brava doesn’t have that much of a following in the US, which has kept prices low. For a car like this, I’d expect somewhere around the $4,500 to $5,500 mark would snag it. Unfortunately, this Brava has the GM sourced 3-speed automatic transmission, but, with a car like this, beggars can’t be choosers. I haven’t seen a clean 131 or Brava like this in a while and it’s nice to see a few of these out there in the wild that are still well preserved.

-Paul

1984 Fiat 131 Abarth Volumetrico

To close out February, I thought we would feature another three box sedan from the 1980s, the ubiquitous Fiat 131. But this is no ordinary 131. In 1981, Fiat decided to add some fire to the mix, much like Alfa Romeo did with their turbocharged Giulietta we featured yesterday. The 131 Abarth Volumetrico featured a supercharged version of the 2.0 liter twin cam engine. This would make the car good for 140 horsepower and top speeds approaching 120 mph. Shortly after Fiat ceased production of the Volumetrico, Lancia would adopt the technology for use in its Beta Coupe, HPE, Trevi and Montecarlo. This 131 Abarth Volumetrico is for sale in Cuneo, on the French border near Nice.

1984 Fiat 131 Abarth Volumetrico

For sale, Fiat 131 Abarth Racing Volumetrico 2000cc, year 1984, original TO plates, two door in optimal condition. Papers available. Contact only by telephone.

Fiat 131s for sale that are in good nick in the US generally bring somewhere between $3,500 to $6,500 or so. The Volumetrico is not a common 131 in the US or abroad, so I'd suspect a low mileage example like this will bring somewhere near the top of that range, if not more. The 131 was the World Rally Champion in 1977, 1978 and 1980. Subsequently, the 131 Rally that was homologated for sale is a rather pricey item to this day. For much less cash, the Volumetrico offers similar looks with the added benefit of supercharged thrills.

-Paul

1979 Fiat 131 Brava Estate

The Fiat 131 is a rare sight on these shores nowadays, but the estate variant has reached unobtanium status. When I came across this 131 Brava estate for sale in California, my jaw dropped. Finding one that would be almost ready for the scrapyard would be hard enough, but a near mint example? With a 5-speed manual gearbox, this would make for a decidedly different way of taking on your family hauling needs.

1979 Fiat 131 Brava Estate

A rare find for the Fiat enthusiastic! 1979 Fiat 131 Brava Station Wagon, blue interior, in good running condition. Does not need automotive work. Smog check was done this year - vehicle passed. Super clean in/out. Fairly new tires. Please email me if interested/for further information.

The asking price of $5,000 is rather steep when it comes to any Fiat 131, but you would be extremely hard pressed to find one better preserved, especially a five-door variant. I'd say we're looking at $3,500 to $4,000 as a more realistic value, but it's great to see one of these 131s still hanging around, looking as if it has plenty of life left in it.

-Paul

1976 Fiat 131 Abarth

Declared one of the greatest handling rally cars of its time, the Fiat 131 raised the bar in the 1970s. Derived from a modest saloon car package, the 131 Abarth combined the best efforts from Fiat and Abarth into a fiberglass body employing the 2.0 liter 16 valve four cylinder engine from the Lancia Beta. Along with a fully adjustable suspension, this allowed engineers to perfect the setup for a varying degree of road surfaces. The car captured the manufacturer’s title in 1979 along with winning one of rallying’s toughest competitions, Finland’s 1000 Lakes. This 131 Abarth for sale in Spain is an example of the 400 produced for homologation purposes.

1976 Fiat 131 Abarth

Fiat 131 Abarth. Very good condition. All original except carburation (it is fitted with two twin choke 44 IDF Weber carbs). Rare original blue colour. Spanish plates.

131 Abarths do not come cheap, and this blue treat is no exception. At a little over $60,000 USD, this is about average for what these cars are commanding today. The shade of blue is especially attractive, as it sets off the fender flares and is quite a departure from the usual red in which you see these cars painted.

-Paul

1976 Fiat 131 Abarth

We've covered a good amount of Lancia's rally history in this past week, but during their spate of wins in the 1970s and 1980s, Fiat had a few successes of their own. Namely, with this car, the 131 Abarth. This car is a three time World Rally Championship, winning the title in 1977, 1978 and 1980 along with 18 race victories between 1976 and 1981. Of course, to go racing, manufacturers had to homologate the vehicle they were entering into competition, which is the genesis behind the road version we see here. These cars had the twin cam 2.0 liter Abarth engine good for 140 horsepower fed through a five speed gearbox driving the rear wheels. The seller states this is about one of 200 of the original 400 built that still exist to this day. I was surprised to see such a rare, original piece of rallying history located a little over an hour due south of my ancestral home in Portugal.

1976 Fiat 131 Abarth

131 Abarth - the nightmare of the Escort. 1 of 200 survivors of the 400 built to homologate group 4. Unique in Portugal. Four time winner of the Rally of Portugal, three times with Markku Alen (1977, 1978 and 1981) and one time with Walter Röhrl (1980). World Champion in 1977, 1978 and 1980.

2000cc, independent suspension, limited slip differential exclusive original model (same as group 4), 155-160 hp, lightweight fiber exterior panels built by Bertone, Aluminum doors. Two Weber 44 IDF carburetors with Abarth intake manifold (optional). Cromodora Wheels 15x7 "original manifold and carburetor preserved and included as standard. Engine and chassis numbers correct and original. Totally original/never restored. Imported from private collection in Italy. Much better than having money in the bank!

Beyond its pedigree and butch looks, the 131 is a significant car for me because my mother drove when I was born. Granted, her car was a pale yellow 1978 131 Mirafiori two door with a GM sourced 3 speed automatic transmission, but it still possessed the crisp Italian lines and quite comfortable seats which proved their worth on long trips. It wasn't the most reliable car, evidenced by the fact my parents traded the 131 in for a 1983 Honda Accord hatchback and owned Hondas for 15 years thereafter. Even still, it hasn't soured me on Italian cars and now, over 30 years on, cars such as this 131 Abarth have become a legend in their own right.

The asking price of €66,000 (~ $87,000 USD) is very strong money, even for such a limited run, championship winning vehicle. The exchange rate has not been kind to the dollar, but having been listed for almost two months, I can't help but think we are around $20,000 above the proper price point for this car, especially when you have low mileage Lancia Delta Integrale Evolutions out there in the $25,000 to $40,000 USD equivalent range. Granted, those cars will not be street legal in the US for another four years. For me, though, it would be worth the wait.

-Paul