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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone! I am a new member to the forum. I've been interested in cars on and off most of my life (23 year old American guy), and I have recently been thinking about purchasing a 124 spider.

To clarify, I've been looking into purchasing a vintage 124 spider (70s version) and I was hoping this would be a good place to find information and gain knowledge to see if this would be a wise idea.

Thanks y'all!
 

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2018 Abarth 124 Spider, Mare Blue / Nero Abarth Leather, Brembo's, Record Monza, Automatic
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Hi! I owned two, a '71 and a '76. The best advice I can give you is check the car over thoroughly for rust. Look into corners, inside panels, lift the carpet, check underneath! Pininfarina did not include corrosion prevention on the build sheets.
The engines were bulletproof as long as you changed the timing belt every 2 years or 24,000 mi., whichever comes first. More often doesn't hurt - timing belts are cheap and the job is easy (unlike the new 124 Spiders). Failure to do so was catastrophic, as it is an interference engine and the valves get press fitted into the pistons. Never happened to mine, but as a tech I fixed many. Also, keep the oil full and changed often with the best oil you can buy. It was a Lampredi designed engine (good), it uses oil.
Drive the car, just like any good Italian car, the synchros are weak, esp. 2nd gear. While this isn't a deal breaker, and it isn't a super difficult job to do, at least you will know what needs to be done. Put a new clutch in while you are there.
If you desire a bit more power, a free flow air cleaner and header/free flow exhaust wakes it up! The dual Weber carb/intake even more so.
And, just like most lovely ladies (and it is a Lovely Lady), she is high maintenance. I wish like hell I could have another!
Good luck! s.
 

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2018 Abarth 124 Spider, Mare Blue / Nero Abarth Leather, Brembo's, Record Monza, Automatic
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P.S. Please let us know if you get one, and send pics!
 

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Hello everyone! I am a new member to the forum. I've been interested in cars on and off most of my life (23 year old American guy), and I have recently been thinking about purchasing a 124 spider.

To clarify, I've been looking into purchasing a vintage 124 spider (70s version) and I was hoping this would be a good place to find information and gain knowledge to see if this would be a wise idea.

Thanks y'all!
Hi from Scotland. I've had a 74 ex California 124 Spider since 1996. There must still be a few left in California... And that's how to avoid rust, which gets the rear arches, sills, front strut towers, floors. Parts are available in US, Vicks Motorsports and Midwest Bayliss come to mind. Perceived wisdom suggests earlier cars are better at resisting rust, plus sport the neater thinner chrome bumpers and a lower ride height. AS, BS, CS models go from 1.4,1.6,1.8 and some 2.0 engines, all with carbs until the 2000 injection models. Buy on condition of bodywork not mechanicals. Bodywork much more expensive to repair unless you are handy with a welder and paint gun? Winter also a good time to buy, so hope you find one. G
 

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2020 Fiat 124 Abarth, manual, Chiaro Silver, visability, navigation, convenience packages, brembos
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Hey, Welcome. Just joined myself minutes ago after buy a new 2020 just yesterday! Good luck in your search...
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Hi! I owned two, a '71 and a '76. The best advice I can give you is check the car over thoroughly for rust. Look into corners, inside panels, lift the carpet, check underneath! Pininfarina did not include corrosion prevention on the build sheets.
The engines were bulletproof as long as you changed the timing belt every 2 years or 24,000 mi., whichever comes first. More often doesn't hurt - timing belts are cheap and the job is easy (unlike the new 124 Spiders). Failure to do so was catastrophic, as it is an interference engine and the valves get press fitted into the pistons. Never happened to mine, but as a tech I fixed many. Also, keep the oil full and changed often with the best oil you can buy. It was a Lampredi designed engine (good), it uses oil.
Drive the car, just like any good Italian car, the synchros are weak, esp. 2nd gear. While this isn't a deal breaker, and it isn't a super difficult job to do, at least you will know what needs to be done. Put a new clutch in while you are there.
If you desire a bit more power, a free flow air cleaner and header/free flow exhaust wakes it up! The dual Weber carb/intake even more so.
And, just like most lovely ladies (and it is a Lovely Lady), she is high maintenance. I wish like hell I could have another!
Good luck! s.
Thank you very much for the input! In your experience, would I be able to do all of the regular work/maintenance on this at home, or does some of it require taking to a professional with a more well equipped garage (lift, etc)? Thanks!
 

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18 Abarth 6MT, all the options, Chipbox and OEM Abarth fender badges. Pedalbooster not installed
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I've owned a few early 124 Spiders. You can do almost all routine maintenance in your garage with the car on jack stands. A clutch would be a challenge though it is possible. Be sure to carefully examine for rust, especially in the front strut towers. Rust repair is very difficult and very expensive. Good luck and yes post pictures of your find.
 

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welcome to the forum hope you enjoy the car as much as we do
 

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2018 Abarth 124 Spider, Mare Blue / Nero Abarth Leather, Brembo's, Record Monza, Automatic
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Hi JohnRingo, I agree with AbarthEsq - you can do most everything on jack stands, and yes it can be difficult. I have removed and reinstalled transmissions with the car on jack stands, using a creeper and rolling out from underneath with the tranny on my chest. I was young like you then! Not fun, but it can be done. Be smart, be safe, use the best equipment you can afford. Don't cheap out on the equipment. I don't know what your mechanical abilities are, but those cars were alot easier to work on, and alot less complicated than todays cars. Buy an original factory Fiat service manual if you can find one to match the series of your car (BS, CS or whatever you end up with), and get an electrical manual too.
And, above all - look for the most rust free car you can find. Good luck, and, again, if you get one send pics!!! s.
 

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2018 Abarth 124 Spider, Mare Blue / Nero Abarth Leather, Brembo's, Record Monza, Automatic
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P.S.: You will find some manuals for sale @ Midwest-Bayless.com, as well as alot of parts. www.AutoRicambi.com is another great resource.
 

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2018 Abarth 124 Spider, Mare Blue / Nero Abarth Leather, Brembo's, Record Monza, Automatic
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That would be "autoricambi.us".
 
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