Wishbone top, damper struts, transverse leaf spring below
135 - 13 (4")
685 kg + driver
Approx. 135 km/h
Year of construction
12 V/ 34 Ah/ 230 W
Having a special taste has always been a little more expensive. Thus Autobianchi presented the A112, or to be more precise, within the scope of their subsidiary, Fiat introduced a somewhat nobler version of the Fiat 127, which came onto the market a bit later. The 128 was already there and with it, the front-wheel drive trio was completed. After having the engine at the rear for many years, this was now shifted to the front.
In the case of the A 112, it is basically the engine and gearbox of the 850 Sport. By bringing it to the front, the engine had to be adapted for the transverse installation, e.g., the oil supply through which the special forming of the oil pan ensured the suction of the oil. The carburettor is also turned by at least 90°, since the float chamber should rather carry a slightly higher amount of fuel when accelerating and a lower amount when braking, than vice versa.
As far as the gearbox is concerned, the change-over to the front is more difficult, because not only must the output, together with the integrated drive shaft, be moved around, but also the gear-change, whose greater complexity is clearly noticed in the A 112. This meant a completely new casing, all that remained from the previous rear-mounted gearbox and in front of the rear axle, were at best, a few gear-wheels.
What the engine has kept, is its sound, perhaps more noticeable up front than in the rear. Indeed, it also still had its temperament, at least if one used the whole RPM-range. The A 112 engine had however, lost a little of its performance in favour of more torque. In addition, despite having a spare wheel at the back and under the boot and the fuel tank under the rear seats, there was considerably more space in the interior.
Admittedly, working in the now narrower engine compartment, had become a bit more difficult, indeed, when it came to the crunch, the front-end, together with the radiator could be dismantled. So, the A 112 was in fact a Fiat, albeit with a nice sports steering wheel and two round instruments but without a rev-counter and without a closing flap for the glove compartment. The fact that there was no cover at the back and also small shortcomings in the finishing, e.g., the rattling tailgate, are things that the car shared with other Fiats.
All together however, the A 112 passed all the tests quite well. Even the amount of space in the interior was acceptable. In view of the short length of the car, one jokingly spoke of a car that was larger inside than outside. The snappy little runner mastered urban- and country roads quite satisfactorily, although on the motorways it did leave a bit to be desired. At least the driving comfort was miles ahead of the Mini, the little front-wheel drive car with which, it was often compared at that time. 05/15