10 Fun Facts About Fiat

Here’s a fun post from our friends in the UK:

fiatFiat are known for their technological innovation in each and every car they place on our forecourts and as a result have become one of the most famous car manufacturers in the world. Their cars have been on our roads for over a century and have changed the world of car manufacturing with their innovative designs and safety mechanisms. Fiat has made history for their unique vehicles and continues to do so in 2015 – with more of their cars on UK roads than anywhere else, it is no wonder they are so well known.

Their range of cars produces some of the lowest CO2 emissions making them not only stylish but environmentally friendly. So, with Fiat being the most famous automobile companies in the UK, we have decided to provide you with 10 fun and interesting facts about the company and their vehicles.

  1. The first automobile was manufactured by Fiat in 1899 at its factory in Turin, Italy. This is where the company’s headquarters are still located – and the brand name is an acronym of the words Fabbrica Italiano Automobili Turino (gee, I thought it was Fix it Again, Tony – just kidding!)
  2. The original Fiat 500 was one of the smallest cars in the world at the time of its production, measuring 127 inches in length, 50 inches in width and 54 inches in height.
  3. The Italian nickname for the car was “topolino,” which translates literally as little mouse.
  4. Three years after its redesign in 2007, the Fiat 500 model became the first Italian car to sell more units abroad (54% of its total sales) than at home. A popular city car, its re-launch was a great success all over the world, including in the U.S., where it was chosen to herald Fiat’s official return to the American market after a 27 year absence.
  5. Fiat has acquired many companies over the years, buying shares in companies like Lancia, Ferrari, Maserati, Chrysler and Alfa Romeo. In 2012, Fiat had acquired a stake of roughly 60% in Chrysler.
  6. Another compact car from Fiat, the Panda won the European Car of the Year award in 2004. The Fiat 500 won the same award four years later in 2008. The first Fiat to win the award was the Fiat 124 model, which came out top in the year of 1967.
  7. In 2009, the British School of Motoring (BSM) signed a deal with Fiat UK that meant it swapped its learner vehicle from the Vauxhall Corsa to the new Fiat 500. In the first four years of the partnership, Fiat UK supplied 14,000 cars to BSM.
  8. Fiat is the leader of the car market in Brazil. The South American giant is the single biggest producer of Fiat cars outside of the brand’s native Italy.
  9. On the 19th November 2012, the company reached a major milestone when the one millionth Fiat 500 rolled off the Fiat Auto Poland production line at its Tychy factory.
  10. Fiat manufactured a grand total of 1,704,021 cars during 2012.

Earthgarage – Greener Car. Fatter Wallet.


Industry to Sign MOU
 for Reduction of Copper in Brake Pads

Representatives of the U.S. EPA, the Environmental Council of the States (ECOS) and motor vehicle industry associations will sign a Memorandum of Understanding on Jan. 21, 2015, for the reduction of copper in brake pads.

Read full post here.

Earthgarage – Greener Car. Fatter Wallet.

Fuel-saving software could be used in GM vehicles

Who says the internal combustion engine is dead? GM Ventures is optimistic that its 2012 equity investment in Silicon Valley-based startup Tula Technology will result in a revolutionary new fuel economy technology that could be deployed in future gasoline engine-powered General Motors’ vehicles.  Independent studies indicate a fuel economy increase of up to 15%.

Read full post here.
Earthgarage – Greener Car. Fatter Wallet.

France to cut diesels

We’re finally getting more diesel engine vehicles in North America: good low-end grunt and excellent fuel economy. Now this?

France wants to gradually phase out the use of diesel fuel for private passenger transport and will put in place a system to identify the most polluting vehicles. About 80 percent of French motorists drive diesel-powered cars.

Read full post here.

Earthgarage – Greener Car. Fatter Wallet.




Top Tips for Driving During the Holiday Season

Winter weather can throw at us an array of potentially hazardous conditions that increase the chance of an accident or breakdown. It’s incredibly important to be prepared and familiarize yourself with these driving tips to help face the cold, dark months of the festive period.

Plan your trip

It’s vital to spend some extra time in winter planning your route. Check out available live traffic update services. Pay attention to adverse weather conditions you’re likely to encounter. You might also want to let your friends and relatives know the route you plan to take and when you expect to arrive.

In the snow

  • Accelerate gently, keep the revs low
  • Leave as much as 10 times the normal gap between you and the car ahead
  • If you skid, steer into it and don’t stomp on the brakes
  • On unsanded roads, avoid the wheel tracks of other cars – compacted snow may become icy
  • Sunglasses can help against the glare of low sun reflecting on snow
  • Slow down!

In the fog

  • Get to know how your fog lights work – don’t confuse them with high beams
  • Allow two second’s worth of space between you and the next car
  • Don’t use the car in front’s tail lights as a navigation guide, as you may end up significantly reducing stopping distance
  • Listen out for traffic by winding down windows at junctions and crossroads if visibility is reduced
  • If you’re really struggling to see, you may need to stop altogether until conditions improve
  • Remember to turn fog lights off  when you no longer need them

In icy conditions

  • Be very wary of black ice – it is transparent and difficult to spot, meaning many drivers often don’t realize they need to reduce their speed
  • Only drive if absolutely necessary. Turn back if conditions are too severe
  • Check that windows are completely clear before setting off
  • 10 times the normal distance between cars is recommended
  • The same advice for skidding applies – steer into the skid and avoid harsh braking
  • Select a higher gear to help tires grip the surface of the road

Preparation is the name of the game when it comes to driving during the festive season. As well as getting to know these top tips for when you’re on the move, make sure you’ve properly checked your car before driving home for Christmas.

Earthgarage – Greener Car. Fatter Wallet.