Rare 1996 Fiat Cinquecento Trofeo
This car has quite a special story. In the early 1990s, Fiat launched a rally version of its popular Cinquecento microcar to compete in its own European single-make cup series. Now the tiny lightweight track and rally weapon could make a return as the next big thing among collectors…
When the Fiat Cinquecento was introduced in 1991, the world expected a cheap and versatile city car for grocery shopping, in the spirit of the original Fiat 500. But adolescent Italians soon learned that their mothers’ new, lightweight and surprisingly agile Cinquecentos were also perfect toys for street racing on cobblestone boulevards, cutting corners in dense renaissance-era city centres and drifting around tight mountain curves.
It’s not clear whether Fiat simply wanted to get Italy’s speed-mad youth off the roads or aimed to create a more inclusive and affordable way of entering the increasingly expensive world of motorsport, but in 1992, the Fiat Cinquecento Trofeo was born. And the way in which they were all born is quite the story.
The example which we are presenting here today started its life in Greece back in 1996 as a standard Fiat Cinquecento, nothing special. But Fiat had made these crates that were distributed to certain dealers in certain countries with which they could convert a Cinquecento into a Trofeo. For Greece, Fiat had allocated 14 crates for the whole country. And our Cinquecento was one of the 14 that were converted to Trofeo specifications by the official Fiat dealer. In this crate you would get improved cooling, a beefier exhaust and other engine upgrades. Meaning that 55 bhp was extracted from the engine. The gearbox received an enforced clutch. Equipped with fog lights, underbody paneling, a Sparco steering wheel, bucket seats, a roll cage, Bilstein suspension, Abarth wheels and sticky tyres, the 790kg Cinquecento was finally ready to race.
Once your Fiat Cinquecento was converted into a Trofeo, you could enter the European championship for the Trofeo. The winner of this championship was granted a seat in the Trofeo Works car for the Monte-Carlo rally. What an amazing concept. We took our Trofeo on our 1000km GOAT Tour through the Greek mountains and we completely fell in love with her. She handles like she is on rails, which works well with her power to weight ratio. Her exhaust screams and she can rev endlessly, what a glorious engine. And with all of the rally/race upgrades it truly feels like you are driving something really special. If there was one car we would love to keep, this could be one of them…
While most people might have forgotten about this small and modest footnote in motorsport’s long history, some of the cars have endured to this day in the hands of collectors. While ex-Works Fiat racing cars from the 1970s and ’80s are already very desirable and increasingly valuable, we strongly believe that the 1990s Fiat Cinquecentos and their affordable rally-bred incarnations will soon climb the wish lists of discerning collectors around the world.
Important to note. We have removed the front half of the cage for safety when driving on the road. This can be reinstalled.
Watch our current stock on www.carcave.be
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Keyword Search Terms:Fiat, Cinquecento, Trofeo, Sporting, Race, Abarth, Italian, 90s, Hatchback, track
Joined March 2019
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