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RE: USA vs. europe and big HP twin cams

I must agree with Dwight.  While I do understand that many have come into   
owning a FIAT because it was the only sports car they can afford (I have   
acquired some for free) and therfore don't have alot of money to spend on   
it.  I also know that most FIATs I have bought have been butchered with   
inferior quality 'replacement' parts.  It is well worth buying the right   
FIAT part or high quality aftermaket part.  If maintenance is performed   
on schedule with the right parts a FIAT will deliver good service and HP,   
if not they usually end up at the wrecking yard.


 -----Original Message-----
From: Dwight Varnes [SMTP:xmxbreed@domain.elided]
Sent: Monday, January 26, 1998 9:59 AM
To: italian-cars@domain.elided
Subject: USA vs. europe and big HP twin cams

Ed is right about a few things (no really!).

1)  Fiat owners are notoriously cheap. It's apparent to anyone who has
spent much time behind a parts counter that most Fiats are second or
third cars that see only occasional use, and the daily driver is
probably an Acura or a minivan (or God save us, a Lincoln Navigator).
You know, the kinds of cars on a lease program that get turned back in
before anything breaks. I think if folks weren't so spoiled with modern
reliable cars and actually had to buy a Honda water pump they'd have an
unpleasant awakening about the costs of things.

Please, no whining about how you like to get good value for your dollar.
I do too, and shop around for most purchases. Have never bought a thing
from Caribou, mostly because I have my own stash of used stuff or I buy
from someone geographically closer. But I also don't obsess on saving
ten bucks trying to get a NAPA thermostat into a spider in-line
thermostat housing. I pay the $35 or whatever and get the thing fixed
with a part that works. If I can save five bucks buying the SAME thing
from someone else, I probably will. But my time is too valuable to waste
trying to save a buck at every turn.

I await the flame-fest.

As for the performance stuff, it is far too easy to spend $2000 on an
engine for your Fiat that will still not give you a 5.0 Mustang 0-60
time. Spend that same amount of money on the Mustang, and you'll really
be shaving some time off that run. It's a simple American thing that V8s
are the preferred way to go fast, and everything is readily available.
The few of us that care to do it to Fiats are a miniscule minority, and
the marketplace reflects this. In europe, all the cars are powered by
smaller engines, so building a Fiat isn't considered much stranger than
doing up a Ford Escort.

If you really want to hear complaining, ask me about speed parts for
Audi 5 cylinders.  :)

Dwight Varnes
1970 124 Spider (restored with many parts cars, and expensive parts from
1986 Audi Coupe GT (oooh, 110hp from 2.2 liters, better hold on)  

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