Anil Asher
1957 Fiat 1100 Familiare
1100cc 4 cylinder

Pre Purchase History

Growing up in India in the 70’s the only domestic cars one could buy was the Fiat and the Ambassador, a Morris from England, both manufactured under license. The aspiration then was to own a Mercedes but my dad could only afford a Fiat which he bought new in 1957 and loved and cared for for many years. That little car took us on many vacations with 6 of us packed in with boot and luggage rack stuffed with everything we needed for the month long holidays we took then.

That car was passed on to my eldest brother, then to the next eldest until it was finally sold. I never got my turn, though I did learn how to drive in it. I cried the day it went to its new owner - it was like losing an old and faithful friend.


Cut to present - I’ve got my Mercedes and have a project 1959 Fiat 1100 sedan in boxes but when I found this beauty in California I had to fly out for a test drive. I fell in love at first sight and shook hands on the spot.  It took a bit to complete all the logistics but it arrived in TX on the back of a transporter looking as cute as ever.

Repair, Maintenance, & Modifications

The vehicle is almost all original, the engine was replaced a long time ago but all the other bits and pieces are there. Originally a New York car it has survived surprisingly well or at least has been restored with care. It is a later model year engine, probably from the 60’s but of the same family which included some minor improvements.


The brakes were working when I test drove it in California but on the first test drive in TX approaching a busy intersection the brake pedal went straight to the floor and stayed there. This little car managed a Herbiesque maneuver merging into busy cross traffic through a red light and turning off into a side street and rolling to a stop unscathed.  I've replaced the brake cylinders as the previous owner had replaced everything except the leaky ones and a cracked hard line.

Next up is a rebuild for the engine with no compression and hopefully that is all the maintenance that is required.

My kids love this little car too and we have named her Bella. I’m looking forward to having Bella on the road and at the shows soon.