The Tuning Story of An Unexpected Gift


Thread Starter #1
Joined
Jul 20, 2011
Messages
200
Likes
12
Location
London/Mumbai
A few years ago one day my door bell rang when two familiar faces had a set of car keys dangling in front of me, telling that these keys are now mine. The only thing I got out at this moment in time was a "Sorry?".

Well, the car was owned by the girlfriend of a client of mine, who also was a client of mine. Both came for performance tuning parts for their cars for some years.

She bought another car and the Cinquecento she used to own became surplus. So she decided to visit me and just drop the car with me. The car she bought then I own now too.

Here I was being lumbered with a yellow Fiat Cinquecento Sporting, which was dubbed 'lemon' in due course.

Lemon's chassis was fine. No rust, but had a number of niggles. As one can't look a gift horse into the mouth I just took it as it was then. Lemon was in good company. It was one of 4 Cinquecentos I owned then.

Lemon was great fun to drive like Cinquecentos are. But power is something I never can get enough of. Having done a 16v FIRE conversion on another one I thought I give this first a proper 1108cc treatment. Of course it shifted a lot better after gaining some good torque and 11bhp more, which was from 57 to 68bhp with 750kgs of car.

Sometime after I stuck another engine in, which came from a Punto 60. Before I fitted the engine I worked on the chead. The 1242 60 engine has got a single point injector, which means that the engine is a straight swap with the 1108. Just an exhaust spacer is needede and a re-map afterwards. This is even more important with the head work and the cam I had done for it.

Unfortunately the SPI injector only allows for 82bhp, but this was 25bhp up on what the car used to have when I got it.

It did shift. With driver it was just under 100bhp/ton.

One day I got offered a 1368 16v engine offered and thought I would fit that. So I started on the new project. Unfortunately this was the beginning of a frustrating period. In the middle of fitting it I got seriously sick and had to postpone further work. Then winter set in and nothing could be done. When I was able to continiue lemon was subjected to vandalism despite in a rather secure storage.

The project was thrown back further because I needed to repair the damage first.

Progress was slow, but a year later the engine was fitted in the final position, which is slightly different than the original position.

Some months later the exhaust was sorted and then the car had to be left for a while because of other work related projects.

A few weeks ago we decided to continue and get it sorted in order to see on the road soon..

After giving it a wash (of what is left of the car), we looked at the manifold. The engine was dynoed before coming out at 113bhp. At 850kg with driver this makes over 130bhp/ton. Not bad, but I want much more. Now some lightening is being done. The idea is to get off about 100kg with all the seats in and the same comfort as standard. And on the engine side the goal is to up it by 47bhp for the time being.

Well, it is work in progress.

This is the car when I was enjoying the 82bhp.
 

Attachments

350Z

Core Team
Joined
Aug 10, 2009
Messages
18,428
Likes
6,205
Location
New Delhi
That’s an interesting read. Your Cinquecento (or should I say Lemon?) apparently looks clean and cute. Upload more photographs and keep us updated.

Drive Safe,
350Z
 
Thread Starter #5
Joined
Jul 20, 2011
Messages
200
Likes
12
Location
London/Mumbai
hmm...and i thought fiat 500 is called Cinquecento!! [confused]
The Topolino was the first Cinquecento, but it was dubbed 'little mouse' because of cartoon resemblence. Built 1936 to 1957

The iconic 500 followed, which was built from 1957 to 1975.

The 126 was meant to be a500 replacement and was built from 1972 to 2000.

The replacement was meant to be the Cinquecento 1992, but was built alongside the 126. Production of the Cinquecento ended in 1998.

The replacement was the Seicento, which was on the same platform. The Seicento was built from 1999 to 2009.

The current 500 is offered since 2007.
 
Thread Starter #6
Joined
Jul 20, 2011
Messages
200
Likes
12
Location
London/Mumbai
Yesterday I was able to do some more work. Progress is slow but at least I am making some progress.

To keep the 4-2-1 exhaust manifold that is designed for the engine, we had to move slightly back and at an angle of a couple of degree.

This was a lot of work. the other problem was to fit the alternator belt. The 16v does not clear the engine mount. Instead of filing material away from the engine mount we opted for a tensioner to clear it.

The plate covering the intake ports is the base plate for a proper plenum chamber.
 

Attachments

Joined
Aug 22, 2009
Messages
2,977
Likes
26
Location
India
great write up buddy! am not techie nor know about this car much but finding interesting to read about mods on your cinquecentto!! [thumbsup]
 
Thread Starter #9
Joined
Jul 20, 2011
Messages
200
Likes
12
Location
London/Mumbai
great write up buddy! am not techie nor know about this car much but finding interesting to read about mods on your cinquecentto!! [thumbsup]
I am in process to mod some cars that are much better known on your shores. It is a shame that you never got the Cinquecento. It is a fun car.

Congrats dude.
She is cute.
Thanks. And you are right She is cute. When the Cinquecento was launched in 1992 every tester was rediculing the looks. I went to the Fiat dealer and instantly fell in love.

I plan to bring at least one of them over in the near future.
 
Thread Starter #10
Joined
Jul 20, 2011
Messages
200
Likes
12
Location
London/Mumbai
Over three weeks since the last update.

Progress is a bit slow. I had to go to Germany for health reasons and trying to sort myself out. Before i left we were progressing on the custom inlet manifold. Unfortunately we didn't have the injector rail at hand when making the water hose connection, which goes from the cylinder head to the heater matrix.

This week the inlet manifold hopefully will be finished.

This is how far we got:
 

Attachments

Thread Starter #11
Joined
Jul 20, 2011
Messages
200
Likes
12
Location
London/Mumbai
Nearly five months since I updated the thread.

I have made a bit more progress since my last post.

After we moved the engine back slightly to accommodate for the exhaust manifold and re-arranging the alternator fitting a standard radiator could be fitted.

I bought a radiator, which I then needed for another car. The replacement radiator arrived tha other day.

While being busy with a lot of development work I had not too much time to spend on the car. In the time I had available some progress was made. I have been able to remove about 16kg of sound deadening. A few other bits became surplus too. Originally the power to weight ratio was around 69bhp per ton including the driver.

As it is lightened right now and with the engine as it performed in the previous car we are at about 140bhp per ton. As lightening and power increase goes on the figure will improve.

Hopefully today the radiator will be fitted and then I can make the hoses for it accordingly.

This is some weight lost:
 

Attachments

Top Bottom