Fiat 500 tyres-A look at this Iconic Little Italian Car
I was lucky enough to be able to take a few days off last week and we (my wife Michelle) decided to take a short break to Rome. I regard myself as a well-travelled person. Visiting places with various tyre companies, helped with that.
Rome was one of the places I had previously missed out on. I was determined to go there on a short break. Off we went from Leeds airport here in Yorkshire UK. When we arrived the weather was hot and sunny. The first thing I noticed when we stepped out of the airport. Was the large amount of Fiat 500 cars on the Italian roads.
This (along with the old style mini) has always been one of my favourite cars. As my readers know, I was fortunate to work in the tyre industry in the early days, when cars from all over the world were being imported into the UK. These cars all came with unusual tyre sizes. I can always remember one of these little cars pulling into the tyre shop where I worked. The Fiat 500 tyres on this little red car were 135×12 and they were made by Pirelli tyres. Pirelli tyres were seldom seen in those days, except on Italian cars such as the odd Alfa Romeo and a few Fiat 500’s.
The Pirelli 135×12 tyres were textile radial tyres and known as the CN54. These were later fitted to British MGB
sports cars, but were later replaced with steel belted radial tyres.
Fiat 500 tyres
The Fiat 500’s were first brought to the market as an economical way of transport and were fitted without any kind of luxuries. The engine size was a 470cc giving the little car 13 BHP (brake horse power). It could do a top speed of about 53 MPH. The little cars were not very popular and in 1957 a new version was introduced with wind up windows, better seating and indicators which worked from the steering column.
The Fiat 500 tyres did not change very much over the next few years, but Fiat gave the little car many more upgrades, with the main improvement being the engine size. This was in the early sixties and seventies. I certainly remember the Fiat 500 tyres that were fitted later went up to 13 inch wheels with a tyre size of 135×13.
Fiat 500 tyres like most other cars have evolved with the power upgrades of the car. Modern Fiat 500 tyres are on alloy wheels fitted with 15 inch wider tyres. In fact we have a Fiat 500 courtesy car and it is fitted with 185R65x15 Apollo tyres. Fiat 500 tyres fitted now are a far cry from the 135×12 tyres from years ago.
AN excellent history of the Fiat 500 can be found on… http://classicfiat500.co.uk/fiat-500-history-2/