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Homepage. This page: Two photographs of the FIAT Topolino.

FIAT Topolino

A classic Italian runaround photographed in Bruges, Belgium, in the early 50s.

The first photograph shows a FIAT 500 Topolino and several other 1940s/1950s cars parked on Belgian pave road surface, in 1952.

FIAT 500

There are few notes on the back of this photograph, other than the fact that it was taken at Bruges, in Belgium, some time in 1952. The only car I've been able to identify is the diminutive FIAT Topolino ("little mouse") nearest the camera. The car alongside looks like an Opel.

It just goes to show that Smart, with their nippy little 2 seaters designed for inner-city living, were not the first to see potential in building a tiny 2 seater coupe, for local jaunts. Everything about the tiny FIAT is pared back, designed for lovers of all things minimal. The Topolino was launched in 1936, as an Italian People's Car, similar in concept to the Volkswagen in many ways. Production of the car known as "little mouse" would continue until 1955, by which time the all-new FIAT 500 was ready for sale.

FIAT book
The earliest Topolinos featured a 4 cylinder engine, of 569cc, which could propel the tiny motorcar to 50 or so mph. In 1948 the 500B was announced, itself a revised version of the original, and came with a new 569cc engine, this time featuring overhead valves instead of the sidevalves found in the original Topo. The appearance of the revised FIAT was all but untouched, bar a few tweaks here and there.

Visually things received a make-over with the FIAT 500C - that came along just a year later in 1949. This would be the final incarnation of the Topo, until production switched to the new-shape 500 six years later. The 500C came with a totally different look to it, and a host of updates to the running gear beneath the coachwork. The car shown above is one of the earlier, 500 or 500B, variants. I'm sure a FIAT expert out there can tell me which one this is??!!

Another FIAT, this time dumped following WW2.

Les sent me this photograph a little while back, and it shows a Topolino looking very forlorn indeed:

"This picture shows a Fiat used by the German army in WW2, then captured and made use of by the Allies and finally dumped as surplus."

FIAT Topolino

Return to Motoring Photographs Page 2.

Some external FIAT Topolino links:

1936-1955 Fiat Topolinos
Topolino Parts

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