Now that the Fića's restoration is finished, all that's left to do is to arrange and execute shipping. However, all is not as seamless as it seems since there exists a slight obstacle, in the form of what you see in the picture above.

Namely, the Fića will wait out the winter (albeit in a garage, unlike the one in the photo) due to the logistical risk the snow presents itself as. When winter is on its last legs, the car will then start its journey to the other side of the globe.

Plus, some companies don't even ship cars during winter anyways...


After almost a year, my Fića's restoration has finally been completed! It looks even better than it did new... All that's left now is to wait for its arrival and, of course, show you how it turned out. However, instead of showing the finished product outright, I have decided to reveal it a different way.

My Fića now looks like one of the following six, in no particular order:

Option 1: Fića Helicopter
I have converted my car into what you see here on the left. I always wanted to learn how to fly a helicopter, so here's my chance to do it in style.

Option 2: Drag Racer
I have made a drag racer of my car to use for fun on the weekends. There's nothing like blowing away over-pompous muscle car drivers in an Italian micro-car.

Option 3: Fiat Jolly
I have turned my car into this Fiat Jolly. During 1958 - 1966 Fiat sent some 600's to the Ghia design house for conversion. The rich used them to go about on their yachts, and 32 'Jollies' were taxis on the island of Catalina (near L.A.) in the early sixties.

Option 4: Police Car
I have made my car into a police version, siren and all. Wonder if people will slow down and use their turn signals when they see this thing driving their way.

Option 5: Abarth Replica
I have converted my car into the Abarth version (it is to Fiat what AMG is to Mercedes). Parts and info are very abundant for this legendary street-legal racer. Its hood (at the back) is fixed open for better aerodynamics and cooling. And it has a Hemi.

Option 6: Former Glory
I have taken my car and restored it to its original factory specifications. If you're gonna own a piece of history, you should preserve it and keep it original, not mess about with it.

Voice your choice in the comments section!


It seems that I forgot to post some pictures back when they came in... Better to include them now than after I reveal the Fića's final form. The following forgotten photos are of the undercarriage before it was treated (and well before the suspension was overhauled).

To see the "after" versions of these pics, click here.

La leyenda del Fitito

Sunrise. A young man is driving on the freeway from Belgrade to Novi Sad when his Fića breaks down. He pulls over on the hard shoulder and decides to call his friend for help. As he rummages through the cabin he realizes he's forgotten his phone at home, so he decides to flag somebody down and ask them for help.

Given the time of day, he'd be looking back at the freeway for a while.

After what seemed like ages, a car became visible on the horizon. He instantly started waving his arms like a madman until he saw what the car was: a newer Mercedes.

"Oh great," he thought, "not only is this guy gonna stop, but he's gonna drive through the adjacent puddle, too!"

How the pieces fit together

Many of the parts in the photos from my previous post have since been mounted on the car; here is what the puzzle pieces looked like before, just to give an idea...

What follows is what has resulted from that big braking and suspension system overhaul that I mentioned earlier (which also looked like the photo above beforehand).

Front axle:

Rear axle:

This is what one of the drum brakes looks like on the inside...

Puzzle pieces

Just to show just how much detailed work has gone into this project, here are some photos of the many renewed (or just new) parts that now form part of my Fića. The pictures contain suspension components, bumpers, wheels, steering components, interior trim, hoses, brakes, and more.

Interesting fact: each of the screws has been individually rust-protected with a special coating containing gold, among other things, that is likely never to rust. They are visible in the last photo.

Click to view the high-res versions.

One last time

Here is my Fića with the aforementioned second coat of primer now applied. Not much more to say, except that this is the last look at the car before it's finally painted.

If anyone's curious, in the background is a 1952 Opel Olympia on which they are doing all the necessary bodywork. And no, it's not mine.

Click to enlarge, as per tradition.

Almost painted

Here are the newest pics of the car, seen with the primer (the white) actually on. It also has the shop wheels on it, meaning those are not my Fića's wheels, but the wheels they use so that the real ones don't get painted accidentally. The real ones are in the last pic.

They are going to give it another coat of primer before sending it into the painting bay to receive it's final color. Then it's going to dry for a little while, after which all the parts that remain will be mounted to the car.

Click on the pics to enlarge.

Progress report

There is very little left to do on the car at this point: the suspension, like the engine, has now been mounted, the entire interior has its (more or less) final coat of paint, and all of the interior components (seats, dash, headliner, etc.) are all ready to go.

The original-style steering wheel I was looking for has been found, and so have some rare exterior trim pieces, which are the very last of the parts purchased for my car. The final coat of paint will be applied very soon, and all that awaits afterwards is a testing period to make sure everything works like it should.

Note: the Fića in this picture is not mine, but another one they finished restoring recently. However, mine does have an identical car cover...

Engine pics

The engine is now mounted in the car! It has been cleaned up, all the wearable bits like hoses and wiring are all new, and everything that was meant to be shiny now actually is...

The sole picture is below; click on it for the high-res version.

Compare this pic with the original one, which was what it looked like back when I bought it.

Work down under

Restoration can be full of creativity sometimes. Here, they have used a special 'rack' of sorts that mounts to where the Fića's suspension does, and the car can be moved around using the rack's casters. This is also handy during the painting process: no wheels to cover up!

Another rack attaches to mounting points near the casters, allowing the car to be flipped on its side, visible in the photos. While the car rests on this side portion, work on the bottom of the shell can be done more easily.

Click any photo to enlarge it (both are high-resolution).

Spray putty

As the title suggests, the spray putty has been applied; as for the brake job, it is progressing as planned. On another note, the engine itself is done: it's been painted and all the new wearable parts have been prepared (i.e. hoses, etc.).

The spray putty pics follow, and as always click to enlarge.

The home stretch

I have received some more pictures! They've smoothed out the body now, and all that's left before the paint comes on is the spray putty and the aforementioned hole-drilling. Besides that, a complete overhaul of the braking system is also underway.

Click any image to enlarge.


They have started the primer phase (!) so they've removed all traces of the previous color; what's left is to smooth the body down where necessary, drill some holes, add some spray putty, and then comes the paint job (!!), before which the actual primer is applied. Here are the pics (click to enlarge):

Much ado about turn signals

How nicely things conclude sometimes.

In the video posted some time ago featuring all the parts that are yet to be mounted, one of the more noticeable parts are a pair of round turn signals with black frames. In the first pics I posted of my Fića on the old owner's yard, it is evident that it then had that same type of turn signal.

So what's so odd about this then? And how can turn signals at all be any interesting, for that matter? Well, read on to find out.

Fićas made in the eighties had these same black-rimmed turn signals; I wasn't so sure that mine exited the factory with them. I decided to investigate, and I found an assortment of photos of Fićas of very similar vintage to mine. One of those was this Fića to the right.

Ergo, my Fića should have turn signals with aluminum frames – just like the ones under the headlights in this photo – and not the black ones it was bought with. All I needed to do was to find such turn signals, get them over to the restorer, and tell him to put those on the car instead of the black ones.

How hard can that be?

Getting ever closer

I received some shots of the finishing touches they did on the car; they've evened out the metal they have repaired and sanded down some parts, though there are a few bits still left to be sanded. There's only a few weeks left until the restoration will be done completely! (at least that's the plan...)

Pictures of the above follow.

Fića opinions (review from 1971)

Here is a review of the Fića from 1971 - a good way to see the perspectives people had back when it was new.

It is the way it is: we all look at it with our noses up high, we try to reject it, but regardless the Fića is celebrating its sixteenth birthday. What was once the Fiat 600 and now the Zastava 750 has retained that magical attraction which lures buyers. So what does all that mean? It means keeping a steady hand when it comes time to take out your wallet.

It's still the cheapest car (besides the Trabant) in dealerships, in insurance offices, and in service bays. If some spoiled young woman were to slam its door out of protest, one can only keep cool: unsatisfied and snobby candidates are not worth getting oneself into a fit, because in the end, she was just dissatisfied with the car...

It's all in the details

I've received some video footage of my car! Well, parts of it. Below is footage of some components that are yet to be mounted. The first video contains parts and the second contains the upholstered interior, ready to go.

From ugly duckling to swan

Here's the car with its preschool friends fellow Fićas in the painting bay, who are ready to be...well, painted.

Note the new floorpans!