Tuesday, May 10, 2011

1982 Fiat Spider Turbo

This is an interesting and rare car. As I wrote in an April, 2009, post, The Spider Turbo didn't enter the US with a turbocharger. Fiat commissioned a New Jersey based company called Legend Industries to add the turbocharger and all its ancillaries after the car arrived in the US.

The turbocharged engine has only 20 more horsepower than the standard engine. Whether that's worth the extra maintenance a turbo engine requires is debatable. As one JaCG reader wrote in the comments section of the original post: "Putting a heat producing turbo in a car that already had cooling problems for an extra 20 horse power? It sounds like a car that gives you a lot of pain and very little gain."

If you don't mind the extra maintenance (and while it may not be a lot, 20 extra horsepower is 20 extra horsepower and any increase in horsepower is always a good thing) this would be a cool car to own, just for the rarity factor. Only 700 were built. Very few survive.

This one is a true survivor. It has just 50,213 miles on it and according to the seller, it has not been "restored or altered". He describes it as being in "excellent condition with only slight imperfections".

The asking price is not cheap, but given the Spider's general propensity for rust and the small number of turbocharged cars built in the first place, this car, in this condition, is likely worth the price.

Located in Twin Lakes, WI, click here to see the eBay listing.


Max Power said...

From my understanding, due to the modest hp gains and the tempermental of Fiats back then, a lot of owners eventually just took the turbos off as it was not a hard thing to do.

Fiat later sold a supercharged version (the Volumex) of the Spider but for Europe only.

Sean SL said...

I have always heard good things about the legend turbo. I think that many on the heating problems were caused by poor thermostat modules.

I think the price is a bit rich.