Succumb to the lure of this pretty little Italian sporty classic

19 December 2022
Laudoracing 1968 Fiat 850 Sport Coupé
Succumb to the lure of this pretty little Italian sporty classic Images

PRICE: € 109.90
SCALE: 1/18

Fiat's popular little 850 saloon was joined by a coupé variant at the 1965 Geneva Motor Show, with the original 843 cc engine, producing 47 hp, still at the back.

For 1968, the coupé got a bit of a makeover, becoming the Series II and receiving the additional Sport moniker - in recognition of the sportier interior, restyled front and increased engine capacity (now 903 cc, producing 52 hp).

More than 2.3 million units of the 850 series left the Fiat factories, including the bare chassis that were supplied to external coach builders. Of the Coupé, just over 340,000 were built between 1965 and 1971, covering both Series I and II production. The 850 Sport Coupé did find a second life though - as production continued after 1971 in Spain, now badged as a SEAT.

Laudoracing, based in France, manufacturer absolutely sublime resincast replicas at 1/18 scale, and a rather cute range of 1/64 models (see page 12 for an example). The company's after-sales service is absolutely top notch, offering a speedy spares/replacement service (subject to stock, of course), should anything accidentally get knocked off or go missing. The 1968 Fiat 850 Sport Coupé, as modelled here, also comes in yellow or white (green, blue and dark blue versions have already sold out), and is superbly modelled and finished, as you can see from the photos. The detailing is absolutely sublime and, at this price point, makes for an absolute bargain - easily keeping company alongside much more expensive models.

Modelled in resin, with metal and plastic parts, plus very authentic rubber tyres, this is limited to 200, so it surely won't be long before it joins its 'sold out' siblings in the other colours.

Being a resincast, the doors don't open, but both the driver's and the passenger's door windows are modelled in the down position, affording a great view of the detailed interior - with its realistic-looking seats, dashboard instruments, gear stick, air vents, window winding handles, and steering wheel badge. It's all there.

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Although the front wheels don't steer, the wheels themselves are masterpieces in their own right. Perfectly recreated, the shiny crome hubcaps set them off a treat.

And staying with the outside, the sumptuous red paintwork is absolutely stunning - beautifully finished all over, with plenty of chrome brightwork to really make this a very evocative classic. The authentic number plates and subtle Fiat badging are spot on, The bumper overriders even have the correct inserts. The light lenses all look incredibly realistic too.

Dimensions of the model are 203 mm long, 88 mm wide and 72 mm high. Weight is just under 1kg.

Conveniently, Laudoracing offers a facility whereby purchasers can split their payments over a few months, through a PayPal facility, which really helps, given how tempting these beautifully-crafted models are. So, it's okay to succumb to the lure of this beautiful Italian lady in red. I did.