Skip to main content
#
Canberra Antique and Classic Motor Club
Our Club
Committee by laws
Club Constitution
Concessional Rego Guidlines
Membership and Registration Contacts
Club Committee
Membership Form
About
Upcoming Events
Past Events 2013 onwards
Past Events before 2013
Presentation Night
Events
Veteran
Vintage
Post Vintage
Historic
Restorations
Rusty Relics
Member's Gallery
1924 Vauxhall 23/60 Tourer
Bullnose Morris Number 1
1926 Model T Tourer
1926 Bullnose Morris Cowley Runabout
1928 Studerbaker Sedan
1928 Austin 7
1929 Buick Sports Coupe
1930 Model A Ford Coupe
1947 Rover 16 Sedan
1948 Plymouth Coupe
1948 DE Daimler 36HP
1950 Studebaker Champion Sedan
1951 Lagonda Sedan
1946 Mercury Ute
My '37 Vauxhall
Pre 1954 car stories
1954 Triumph TR 2 Roadster
1954 Mercedes Benz Type 220 Sedan
1956 Buick Special Sedan
1956 AC Aceca
1956 Hillman Husky
1962 EK HOLDEN SPECIAL
1962 Fiat 600 C
1963 Fiat 1500 Sedan
1964 Humber Vogue - Estate
1967 Mustang Convertable
1971 Ford Fairlane
1971 MGB Roadster
1972 Austin 3-Litre
1972 Vanden Plas - Princess
1973 Volvo 164E Sedan
1975 Citroen Pallas
Christine
Jimmy's Motor Vehicle
Mustang Makes 50
The Story of My Bolwell
1959 FC Holden
Post 1954 car stories
Please Identify these Cars
Saved from the Grave
Films - Classic Adds 1
Films - Classic Adds 2
Films - Assembly lines
Films - Inventions
Photos - Old
Photos - Stars Cars
Photos - Strange Old Cars
1946 Holden Prototype
Engines - Big and Small
1960 Chev Impala Sedan
The Day the Queen Came to Town
Geoff Halls' 1938 Austin 7
Shifting Gear
Photos, Films, Restorations
For Sale / Wanted
Club Shop
Links to other sites
Advertisers
Ads, Links
Contact

My first car was a white 1963 Fiat 1500. I bought it for $130 in 1988. I had always liked Fiats as my uncle had a 124BC and a 500. My dad also had a good friend who owned numerous Fiat 500s, 600s and also a 124AC. My friend at school had also bought a Fiat 124 to restore,and his sister had an 850. Inspirational. He helped me get my first Fiat up and running. When I took it for its roadworthy, the mechanic told me it needed new ball joints. I didn’t even know what they were, but some friendly advice from a neighbour, and the borrowing of an angle grinder to remove the huge rivets soon had me heading in the right direction.

Booked in for the second roadworthy, the starter motor decided not to work, so mum towed the car there. On the way the rope snapped and I was stranded across someone’s driveway. Of course they turned up almost instantly so I had to jump out and push my car out of the way. A knot in the rope got us the rest of the way there. Did this put me off owning an old car – not at all. Learning how everything worked, and being able to fix most things myself was great.

Finally I had the roadworthy and was able to use the car on my learners permit. It was so exciting to be out on the road in my own car.

While I was fixing it up, I also picked up some old road test magazines to learn more about my car when it was new. I was very impressed to find that the four cylinder Fiat engine had more power than an EJ Holden six, and out of 25 cars tested, it’s top speed of 91 mph was 7th fastest beaten by the Valiant S, 92 mph, Fiat 2300 92.8mph, Fairlane 500 93.5 mph, the MG1600 MkII at 100mph, Mercedes 220 SE at 105mph and jaguar 3.8 MK II at 125 mph. Therefore in that test it was the fastest medium 4 door sedan of the day. A quote from the road test summary: “ While not intended as a sports car, it can behave in a sporting fashion yet provide good top gear performance.” I guess that means that before Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May came along, we had the Fiat 1500.

No wonder people at car shows have told me stories of sitting behind cars at 60mph for a while then opening the second barrel of the Weber carburettor and blasting past other road users (in the good old days). It also had standard disc brakes on the front and a fantastic heater and warning lights for everything.

As you can imagine, with all that power under the hood, it was inevitable that a new P plate driver would try to take advantage of it. I crashed my poor car just three months after getting my licence but thankfully walked away without a scratch. I put my spare white 1500 on the road for few years, then came across a very good blue 1500 that I found at a recking yard. $150 later I had the car that I used for my wedding, and still own today. I’m pretty sure there are still a few donor parts of my original 1500 that continue to travel with me.

No wonder people at car shows have told me stories of sitting behind cars at 60mph for a while then opening the second barrel of the weber carburettor and blasting past other road users (in the good old days). It also had standard disc brakes on the front and a fantastic heater and warning lights for everything.

As you can imagine, with all that power under the hood, it was inevitable that a new P plate driver would try to take advantage of it. I crashed my poor car just three months after getting my licence but thankfully walked away without a scratch. I put my spare white 1500 on the road for few years, then came across a very good blue 1500 that I found
at a wrecking yard. $150 later I had the car that I used for my wedding, and still own today. I’m pretty sure there are still a few donor parts of my original 1500 that continue to travel with me.