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Driving Experience: Fiat/Bertone X1/9 vs Fiero GT by PDX.GT
Started on: 08-27-2014 12:23 PM
Replies: 32 (3508 views)
Last post by: PDX.GT on 09-13-2014 11:52 AM
PDX.GT
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Report this Post08-27-2014 12:23 PM Click Here to See the Profile for PDX.GTSend a Private Message to PDX.GTEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
When I was younger, I learned to drive stick in my then girlfriend's Fiat/Bertone X1/9. It's the most exhilarating driving experience that I've ever had. At only 75HP, it wasn't the speed, but more so the overall excitement. Since then, I've been longing to replicate it, in something more reliable & repair friendly when necessary.

I realize opinions here might be biased, but has anyone driven both an X1/9 & a Fiero GT? If so, what are your overall impressions & comparisons of each?

Thank you!
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Report this Post08-27-2014 02:09 PM Click Here to See the Profile for fierosoundClick Here to visit fierosound's HomePageClick Here to Email fierosoundSend a Private Message to fierosoundEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
You will find the Fiero much more ROOMY!

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Report this Post08-27-2014 02:25 PM Click Here to See the Profile for PDX.GTSend a Private Message to PDX.GTEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by fierosound:

You will find the Fiero much more ROOMY!



Nice! Have you driven both?
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Report this Post08-27-2014 04:41 PM Click Here to See the Profile for fieroguruSend a Private Message to fieroguruEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I have owned a Fiat X1/9 and countless fieros... I am 6'2" and 230 lbs and could barely fit in the fiat. It was too tight (hips and leg area - targa was off at the time) and I never drove it, gave it to my brother that was 5'9".

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Report this Post08-27-2014 05:34 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Cheever3000Send a Private Message to Cheever3000Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I've driven both. The Fiero had more power, but both are loads of fun to go thru twisties without lifting the gas pedal.
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Report this Post08-27-2014 05:58 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Lou6t4gtoClick Here to Email Lou6t4gtoSend a Private Message to Lou6t4gtoEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I've owned both. both the Fiat 850 spyder and X19 are underpowered, & unreliable. even my 4 cyl / automatic Fiero is a "racecar" compared to the fiat ! I even made the mistake of once buying a Fiat 124 Spyder, I would NEVER recommend a Fiat of any kind to Anyone. it's "right there" with a Renault Daphine. LOL
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Report this Post08-28-2014 02:31 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Fiero VampireSend a Private Message to Fiero VampireEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Back in 90-92 I owned both a 85 Fiero 2m4 and a X-19 at the same time, much later I picked up a V6, liked both, the Fiat felt a little quicker on response and sportier but less powerful (if that makes since) although the X-19 was a tighter in the cabin it had a lot more cargo space, with stock tires it handled good but after putting bigger tires (can't remember the exact size) it handled like a dog and became completely unsafe on wet roads, in comparison I remember driving the X-19 on the interstate with the stock tires in the rain and the front keep bouncing up like a boat in water but the tires remained on the road with no loss of control. If I were to pick between the two I'd take the Fiero hands down but did enjoy my X-19.
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Report this Post08-28-2014 02:52 PM Click Here to See the Profile for bjc 350Send a Private Message to bjc 350Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I bought an x19 new in 1974. It had the 1300 motor and was a lot of fun. I autocrossed it many times, and it was the most predictable car that I ever autocrossed. Power, not so much. I was a Fiat guy at one time having owned 2- 600's, a new 69 124 coupe, and then the x19. Maintenance was an issue since back then the motors were relatively small and were being highly streesed under US driving conditions and an exuberant owner. The x19 was more agile and had better/lighter steering than the Fiero. But, what do I own now-Fiero's much better do it yourself hobby car. I'm pretty short, so fitting in either one has not been a problem. I still look at Fiat's for sale on the Craigslist ads, weekly. If I find a 67-850 spider that is affordable, that will likely be the last Fiat buy in my lifetime. Love those glassed over headlights but they are slow as a slug!
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Report this Post08-28-2014 03:45 PM Click Here to See the Profile for kevinClick Here to Email kevinSend a Private Message to kevinEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Fellas,
You, or anybody else, who stands over 6' 3" can easily fit in an X-19. How? Simply drive the Fiat through some fog, or leave it in your driveway with the lawn sprinklers on, or wash it once in the car wash. Wait for a couple of hours. The poor X-19's under carraige, doors and/or roof sections will rust so terribly, Shaquil O'neil will fit. It won't drive, but he will fit.

Cordially,
kevin
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Report this Post08-29-2014 01:19 AM Click Here to See the Profile for SileClick Here to Email SileSend a Private Message to SileEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I've owned both the fiero has more power but tbh not as fun as the x19. The fiero is fun though and has more potential.
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Report this Post08-29-2014 03:50 AM Click Here to See the Profile for waynemanClick Here to Email waynemanSend a Private Message to waynemanEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
It's been so long since high school but a buddy of mine had an X1/9. It was great fun but good luck finding one. Old Fiats are going to be expensive too repair. In my opinion the 87-89 MR2's were the most fun wedge car and very reliable but again, hard to find good ones anymore. Fieros win in best looking, available and affordable. Also I had a TR 7, but it was automatic….what a pig that was. These cars are all fun with manual trannies.

Just my opinion
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Report this Post08-29-2014 07:59 AM Click Here to See the Profile for CsjagClick Here to Email CsjagSend a Private Message to CsjagEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I agree on the manual tranny, I once had an 85 Honda Civic sedan with a 5 speed and small motor. I bought it at a local car auction for $400. It wasn't very pretty but it was lots of fun to drive and rev thru the gears, very little power though.
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Report this Post08-30-2014 10:56 AM Click Here to See the Profile for PDX.GTSend a Private Message to PDX.GTEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Sile:

I've owned both the fiero has more power but tbh not as fun as the x19. The fiero is fun though and has more potential.


What do you feel made the X1/9 more fun?
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Report this Post08-30-2014 01:08 PM Click Here to See the Profile for IMSA GTClick Here to Email IMSA GTSend a Private Message to IMSA GTEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Lou6t4gto:

I've owned both. both the Fiat 850 spyder and X19 are underpowered, & unreliable. even my 4 cyl / automatic Fiero is a "racecar" compared to the fiat ! I even made the mistake of once buying a Fiat 124 Spyder, I would NEVER recommend a Fiat of any kind to Anyone. it's "right there" with a Renault Daphine. LOL


I'm actually really surprised that you have so many issues with those cars. My 124 was a rock with no problems, although it had a race engine in it with Weber sidedraft carbs. My 850 also had a 124 motor conversion so I went that route. That little 4 cylinder stock motor just didn't do the trick.

Honestly if I had the choice, I would rather have my Fiats back and get rid of the Fiero.

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Report this Post08-30-2014 02:32 PM Click Here to See the Profile for fierogtlt1Click Here to Email fierogtlt1Send a Private Message to fierogtlt1Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
They do have a new Fiat X 1/9 concept out right now.





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Report this Post08-30-2014 03:40 PM Click Here to See the Profile for CsjagClick Here to Email CsjagSend a Private Message to CsjagEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
The X19 was known to be very rust prone and hard to work on, that's one reason there aren't many survivors. I also have to admit that our memories of how cars we owned as young people tend to be rose colored. I have fond memories of the Opel GT that I owned when I was in my twenties but I know that the performance and handling of that car would not come close to a Fiero GT. I am 63 now.
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Report this Post08-30-2014 03:57 PM Click Here to See the Profile for PDX.GTSend a Private Message to PDX.GTEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by fierogtlt1:

They do have a new Fiat X 1/9 concept out right now.


While the artist called it a concept, it's simply a rendering by an individual. I wish it was a true concept car though.

EDIT: Also, I saw an '88 Fiero Formula with a glass sunroof (not t-tops). Can the glass be completely removed from the roof?

[This message has been edited by PDX.GT (edited 08-31-2014).]

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bjc 350
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Report this Post08-31-2014 12:14 PM Click Here to See the Profile for bjc 350Send a Private Message to bjc 350Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Yes, it is removable and will store in the front compartment if it is a factory sunroof.
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Report this Post08-31-2014 03:18 PM Click Here to See the Profile for PDX.GTSend a Private Message to PDX.GTEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by bjc 350:

Yes, it is removable and will store in the front compartment if it is a factory sunroof.


I appreciate it. When shopping for a Fiero, what's the best way to determine if the sunroof is factory?
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Report this Post08-31-2014 04:15 PM Click Here to See the Profile for bjc 350Send a Private Message to bjc 350Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
My 86 V8 car has an aftermarket sunroof. It is much smaller than the factory sunroof. Factory sunroofs has provisions for storing the glass in the front compartment. My non factory sunroof does not have a setup for storing it in front, though it appears to be easily removable. I've had Fiero's for about seven years now, and have never removed one to store in front. A factory sunroof should have an air deflector stored in the front when the glass is installed on the roof.
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Report this Post08-31-2014 07:32 PM Click Here to See the Profile for TONY_CSend a Private Message to TONY_CEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by PDX.GT:


I appreciate it. When shopping for a Fiero, what's the best way to determine if the sunroof is factory?


Factory sunroofs have the glass flush with the roof panel whereas aftermarket sunroofs have a metal frame around them, This is true in most cases regardless of the car in question.
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Report this Post09-01-2014 02:10 AM Click Here to See the Profile for PDX.GTSend a Private Message to PDX.GTEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
In reading through the forum, I saw a comment that the Fiero didn't have a targa roof because it would affect the structural integrity of the body, by causing flexing when driving without the roof.

Is this to say that the X1/9 had better body structure (rusting aside)?
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Report this Post09-01-2014 09:10 AM Click Here to See the Profile for CsjagClick Here to Email CsjagSend a Private Message to CsjagEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I would compare the crash test ratings, I know the Fiero earned 5 stars
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Report this Post09-04-2014 11:02 PM Click Here to See the Profile for SileClick Here to Email SileSend a Private Message to SileEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by PDX.GT:


What do you feel made the X1/9 more fun?

It felt more solid around corner like the car went in the direction you pointed the wheel and nothing exept you could change it. The fiero feels a little more like the road can take control.

Also the x 1/9 was suprisingly ch3ap to get parts for i picked one up for 800 and everything i found was dirt cheap just had to order everything.
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Report this Post09-11-2014 10:45 PM Click Here to See the Profile for PDX.GTSend a Private Message to PDX.GTEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Sile:
It felt more solid around corner like the car went in the direction you pointed the wheel and nothing exept you could change it. The fiero feels a little more like the road can take control.


Is it possible this changed with the 1988 Fiero suspension?
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Report this Post09-12-2014 01:38 AM Click Here to See the Profile for racingforthesonSend a Private Message to racingforthesonEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I LOVE me Fiero, but if a fun reliable drive iswhat you are after then get a MX-5. My wife has one and I can tell you, there is no affordable car that is more fun to drive. If you haven't driven one then find a used car lot that has one for sale and take it for a spin. Best $2800 I've ever spent on a car. But Fiero does look better sitting still.
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Report this Post09-12-2014 08:05 AM Click Here to See the Profile for CsjagClick Here to Email CsjagSend a Private Message to CsjagEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I know its a matter of taste but for me the MX-5 is just too small, that's the reason I got rid of the MGB I used to have.
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Report this Post09-12-2014 09:54 AM Click Here to See the Profile for Francis TClick Here to visit Francis T's HomePageClick Here to Email Francis TSend a Private Message to Francis TEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
All Fiats were rust prone, I had recently cut up my 124 do to rust in critical areas such as shock towers etc. Bummer cause I had just done a complete engine rebuild with lots neat mods to the engine.

BTW: It's hard not notice X/19 styling was copied by GM with the Fieor coup and Toyota with their first MRII

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Report this Post09-12-2014 12:34 PM Click Here to See the Profile for PDX.GTSend a Private Message to PDX.GTEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Francis T:
BTW: It's hard not notice X/19 styling was copied by GM with the Fieor coup and Toyota with their first MRII


Yes, I've shared your thought for years!
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Report this Post09-12-2014 02:54 PM Click Here to See the Profile for PDX.GTSend a Private Message to PDX.GTEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by racingfortheson:
I LOVE me Fiero, but if a fun reliable drive iswhat you are after then get a MX-5. My wife has one and I can tell you, there is no affordable car that is more fun to drive. If you haven't driven one then find a used car lot that has one for sale and take it for a spin. Best $2800 I've ever spent on a car. But Fiero does look better sitting still.


Your suggestion is great, because weekend fun is exactly what I seek. I've also been tossing around the idea of an MR2 Spyder. I have a new Challenger R/T, which more than satisfies the looks department.
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Report this Post09-13-2014 12:11 AM Click Here to See the Profile for SileClick Here to Email SileSend a Private Message to SileEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by PDX.GT:


Is it possible this changed with the 1988 Fiero suspension?

Not sure never driven an 88 tbh
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Report this Post09-13-2014 02:46 AM Click Here to See the Profile for thesameguyClick Here to Email thesameguySend a Private Message to thesameguyEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
The two X1/9s I've driven were both a lot of fun in a vacuum, but not even remotely fast - which lead to them feeling not fun most of the time.. Like a lot of sporty European cars back in the day (like a Mk I GTI), they are very tossable with a very direct feel that was disappearing from cars by the '80s. When I was looking at Fiats (and Lancias!) it was to replace my Saab Sonett, and I ended up buying an SA RX7 instead. Although the X1/9 was fun, it felt completely lost on modern roads in the same way the Sonett did - keeping up with even the crappiest econoboxes was a challenge and there was little opportunity to even feel fast (and for the record the Sonett was lighter and had more power). IMHO, the SA/FB RX7 easily meets the Fiat's dynamics and vintage appeal and doubles the power, so maybe worth keeping in mind during your search - but don't think it's fast, either. Still, it's always more fun to drive a slow car fast than a fast car slow.

I think the magic of the Fiero lies in its flexibility. Even 30 years later it feels pretty good in modern traffic. It's tractable in the commute and plenty fun to drive quickly. It doesn't have the balance that purer vintage sports cars might offer, but you can cram some pretty incredible meats under the fenders and with minor suspension work it can offer what I'll term unsafe levels of grip (that is, way more than you can safely take advantage of on public roads ). Neither engine is rev happy like you think you'd want in a sports car, but both of them (especially the six) offers prodigious amounts of grunt that's barrels of fun to wield. My experience is that out of the box the Fiero is sorta wanting, but there is nothing - and I mean nothing - that hasn't been fixed by the folks here. My '87 has a little suspension work, big wheels and grippy tires, a minor engine swap (3.4l pushrod, nothing fancy), and big brakes and it's way more car than is safely usable on public roads. Mine makes routine trips up Highway 50 to Lake Tahoe and it's a blast in the twisties. I have a fair number of other cars, but each minor tweak of the Fiero ratchets up its fun level in new and exciting ways.

I like the X 1/9 a lot, but short of a really small autox course, I couldn't think of a single place I'd really be able to enjoy it the way it was meant to be enjoyed. Hence, the '79 RX7 (an '84-'85 GSL-SE would have been GREAT but I couldn't find one). I'd own the Fiat as a novelty (kinda the same reason I had the Sonett), but in terms of a fun to drive car applicable to 2014 American roads, I'd look elsewhere. The MX5 is surely a great car, but I relish obscure and oddball cars, so one will probably never find its way into my garage. The MR-S had a lot of promise, but we only got the crap Camry-motored version and none of the good European or Japanese engines so it's a bit of a letdown. For what they go for, I'd seriously look at a MkVII Celica GT-S or a Focus SVT. They're wrong wheel drive, but super fun too. There's one other car I was thinking of but it's slipped my mind.. Oh, Porsche 944. A little pricey to maintain, but if you find a nice one to start with a truly great car.


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Report this Post09-13-2014 11:52 AM Click Here to See the Profile for PDX.GTSend a Private Message to PDX.GTEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by thesameguy:
The two X1/9s I've driven were both a lot of fun in a vacuum, but not even remotely fast - which lead to them feeling not fun most of the time.. Like a lot of sporty European cars back in the day (like a Mk I GTI), they are very tossable with a very direct feel that was disappearing from cars by the '80s. When I was looking at Fiats (and Lancias!) it was to replace my Saab Sonett, and I ended up buying an SA RX7 instead. Although the X1/9 was fun, it felt completely lost on modern roads in the same way the Sonett did - keeping up with even the crappiest econoboxes was a challenge and there was little opportunity to even feel fast (and for the record the Sonett was lighter and had more power). IMHO, the SA/FB RX7 easily meets the Fiat's dynamics and vintage appeal and doubles the power, so maybe worth keeping in mind during your search - but don't think it's fast, either. Still, it's always more fun to drive a slow car fast than a fast car slow.

I think the magic of the Fiero lies in its flexibility. Even 30 years later it feels pretty good in modern traffic. It's tractable in the commute and plenty fun to drive quickly. It doesn't have the balance that purer vintage sports cars might offer, but you can cram some pretty incredible meats under the fenders and with minor suspension work it can offer what I'll term unsafe levels of grip (that is, way more than you can safely take advantage of on public roads ). Neither engine is rev happy like you think you'd want in a sports car, but both of them (especially the six) offers prodigious amounts of grunt that's barrels of fun to wield. My experience is that out of the box the Fiero is sorta wanting, but there is nothing - and I mean nothing - that hasn't been fixed by the folks here. My '87 has a little suspension work, big wheels and grippy tires, a minor engine swap (3.4l pushrod, nothing fancy), and big brakes and it's way more car than is safely usable on public roads. Mine makes routine trips up Highway 50 to Lake Tahoe and it's a blast in the twisties. I have a fair number of other cars, but each minor tweak of the Fiero ratchets up its fun level in new and exciting ways.

I like the X 1/9 a lot, but short of a really small autox course, I couldn't think of a single place I'd really be able to enjoy it the way it was meant to be enjoyed. Hence, the '79 RX7 (an '84-'85 GSL-SE would have been GREAT but I couldn't find one). I'd own the Fiat as a novelty (kinda the same reason I had the Sonett), but in terms of a fun to drive car applicable to 2014 American roads, I'd look elsewhere. The MX5 is surely a great car, but I relish obscure and oddball cars, so one will probably never find its way into my garage. The MR-S had a lot of promise, but we only got the crap Camry-motored version and none of the good European or Japanese engines so it's a bit of a letdown. For what they go for, I'd seriously look at a MkVII Celica GT-S or a Focus SVT. They're wrong wheel drive, but super fun too. There's one other car I was thinking of but it's slipped my mind.. Oh, Porsche 944. A little pricey to maintain, but if you find a nice one to start with a truly great car.


What a great & comprehensive reply. I'll definitely take a look at the FB RX7 too. I've always felt they're a great looking piece of machinery. Thank you!
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