Long Term Ownership: 1958 Fiat 1200 Turismo Veloce Spider

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It’s difficult enough to find any Fiat 1200 TV, let alone one that was in single ownership from 1965 through 2017. But here on eBay is such a machine, a 1958 Fiat 1200 Turismo Veloce Spider, bid to $16,802, reserve not met, located in Cohasset, Massachusetts. The car has seen a recent restoration that the seller indicates included every component. Within the last year, it received a new battery, new tires, and a fluid change, leaving it ready to show or go. The advertisement is brief, so we’ll explore the model and the market on this one.

The 1200 was an offshoot of Fiat’s modernized 1100 platform introduced in 1953. The 1100 was true north for Fiat, spurring countless coach-built interpretations of road and racing cars, many of which now sell in the six-figure range. Production lasted through 1969. Distinguishing features of 1953’s 1100 began with its engine – an 1089 cc in-line four-cylinder amenable to performance tuning – but also included unibody construction. Aside from the coach-built cars, multiple body styles were available from the factory, mostly four-seat family cars. But one car was specially designed for American audiences – the 1100 Turismo Veloce. Penned by Luigi Rapi in Fiat’s own Carrozzerie Speciali division, the car is almost voluptuous, with a radically curved windshield, pronounced fender haunches,  white wall tires, and generously chromed trim. The design is reminiscent of the Lancia B24 spider, shown in Brussels one year prior to the TV’s debut. Just five or six hundred Fiat 1100 TVs were made before the company shifted to using its 1221 cc engine in several of its body styles, including the TV. The new engine was capable of 55 hp – just a couple of ponies more than the 1089 cc motor. A four-speed manual puts the power to the wheels.

Swiveling seats are a hallmark of the 1200 TV. These allowed easier ingress and egress, besides imbuing the car with a swankiness somewhat belied by its small motor. This interior is outstanding, from the fit and finish to the presence of the original radio. The car retains its original key fob, owner’s manual, and other documents, as well as hubcaps, steering wheel, and spare tire.

The convertible top looks fresh; the chrome and light lenses are intact. The hood ornament is difficult if not impossible to find. Just about 2300 of these cars were made, with even fewer arriving in the US. Prices of these cars have truly been a roller coaster ride; I know this because for some time we attempted to purchase one. In the 2010 time frame, nice examples sold in the $35k area, a lot for a Fiat, but understandable. In 2015, near the top of the market for many marques, I watched this car sell at Gooding for over $80k. Coming back to earth, here’s a recent sale at a more reasonable $45k. As lovely as they are, these cars are, after all, Fiats. While the current bid seems low, seeing these settle back into the $35k area would not surprise me.

Auctions Ending Soon


  1. Will Fox

    Probably my favorite Fiat design. And looks just as nice as a coupe, too.

    Like 9
  2. Big C

    It is truly amazing what people will pay for underpowered pea shooters, these days.

    Like 2
  3. Dusty Rider

    That windshield looks like it came off of a ’57 or so Corvette.

    Like 2
  4. Dusty Rider

    Maybe early T Bird windshield.

    Like 1
  5. TheOldRanger

    One of the few Fiats I like

    Like 2
  6. scott m

    Beautiful lines, love the chrome accent in front of the rear fender. I’ve seen swivel seats in more modern cars, didn’t know about these. As I get older I find it’s not such a bad idea to have underpowered cars, lol, and I love to “slow” race where I’m the only one in the competition- no tickets, and no angry drivers yelling at me :^}

    Like 3
  7. chrlsful

    asa kid we hada Italian sports car junk yrd (Boston itself has as many exotics as all of SoCal I think, or did when I was there 1960 – 80) named Goldie’s and I visited weekly. I’d keep my eye pealed for something I could restore’n drive. A vehicle I could never afford outright (but rather w/time, tools, labor).
    Fiats, Lancia’s, Alfas… never the “M” or “F” affordably into my range. I must have done 1/2 doz fiats ’55 – ’72. First 1200s as the company evolved them (thru 1600 those same yrs). Some of the lill & early hada single open grill or the double (like beemer).
    I never saw the ‘hip chromed’ ones but there was another, like this here, listed in Oct of ’22 I remember as I’d not worked on them.
    Once wrked up they reminded me of beautiful lill jewels as my buds had the muscle (gto, 442, 396, etc). Rest0(mod)’n drive till the nxt one caught my eye. Not easily achievable once the auctions developed as now. Simply impossible w/net sales (combine the 2 and its easy to see Y my hobby is dead). In the 80s I went to the 1st gen bronks as I had moved to a different location. Fell in love w/the i6 (all makes).

    Like 3
  8. DRV

    $17.5 with 1.5 days left.
    Don’t underestimate where this one ends up, but it will be difficult not to lose money on it with this restorative. The lancia B24 and Alfa Spyder don’t have much over this one except $$$$.

    Like 1
  9. Arthur Smith Fitchett

    Two queries: 1. Is there a vent built into the thick chrome trim behind each of the doors, possibly for rear brakes? There seems to be a grille on the one decent image of this area on the driver’s side. 2. Who did the paint? Looking at a couple of the images, where you can actually see it close up, the paint is terribly orange-peely! Pretty cars and, as someone has already observed, similar in aesthetics to the Lancia Aurelia Spider. A great car to show AND drive.

    Like 0
  10. Araknid78

    Ended: May 06, 2023 , 10:45AM
    Current bid:US $23,800.00 [ 55 bids ]
    Reserve not met

    Like 0
  11. Doug LaVerne

    One of these in the family 1959-1984. Even a trip ETN to SW AZ & back to rescue one. Last sale 1984. Family memories.

    Like 0

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