The Pontiac Car Club of Australia has a magazine which is produced every couple of months called "Pontiac Torque". It's created using contributions from members of the club, and has yet to have an article featuring a Fiero. I decided that it would be neat to write one up about my '87 GT and explain a bit about why I originally chose it as my first car.
If anyone is wondering about the 'P-plate' laws I am referring to, it's a restriction you have on your licence after you pass your drivers test in Australia. They prevent you from driving a car with eight cylinders or more, turbocharged (except diesels), and supercharged vehicles for four years. Plus a one-passenger restriction for the first year.
All this lead to me choosing the Fiero and I couldn't be happier that I ended up with one.
Wow, very nice, and well written article! I would kill to have a right Hand Drive here in the US. I used to work for a limo service on the weekend years ago, and used to drive a right hand drive Rolls Royce. Having a right hand drive Fiero here, would make the car just that more unique.
Again, nice job on the article, and a beautiful Fiero!
I'm curious about the right-hand drive conversion. I doubt Fieros were made available from the factory in that configuration. So... are there companies down there who specialize in doing this, and is it an expensive procedure? I'm especially interested in how the factory dash is swapped around without it looking like a hack job.
Originally posted by Patrick: I'm especially interested in how the factory dash is swapped around without it looking like a hack job.
There was an AMAZING write up, with detailed pictures at THIS LINK. Unfortunately, they did not use PIP, and all of the image links are dead It's really sad as it was an amazing thread! There were hundreds of images, step by step along the way. It looked factory when he was done.
Thank you everyone for the kind compliments on the car and the article.
Right-hand drive was not available from the factory, but once the car was imported to Australia there were people here who specialised in converting them.
The quality of the conversions vary from excellent to disastrous. Thankfully mine was done fairly well, although it sounds like the previous owner spent a fortune revising some of the issues it had when it was done.
From what I've heard, most RHD Fieros use a steering rack from a Volvo. Mine had one, but the previous owner wasn't satisfied with it and had the original rack modified to work in a RHD configuration.
Not sure about how much it cost to convert it, I'm still in contact with the previous owner so I may ask him if he remembers how much it was.
It looks like a whole lot of work (and/or expense). Wouldn't it be much simpler to just sit and drive on the 'wrong" side of the car?
Absolutely. However, the law in my state does not allow left hand drive vehicles to be fully registered unless they are over 30 years old. You can register it on a club permit if it is over 25 years old, but there is a restriction that the car may only be driven up to 90 days a year.
For that reason, right hand drive was originally the only option for importing these cars to Australia. Nowadays there wouldn't be any point in converting it across, unless you feel uncomfortable driving on the left side of the car on roads that are designed for right hand drive cars or you frequently visit drive thru's at fast food restaurants.
If I were to buy another, I would definitely choose to import one and leave it in its original LHD configuration. I am glad that my current GT is RHD as it is my daily driver, but if it were it wouldn't bother me at all to have it as a LHD if it was only a hobby car.