Castagna chops the Fiat 500

Castagna chops the Fiat 500

Fiat 500 Castagna 500 TenderTwo s

Just as the new Fiat 500 was inspired the original Fiat 500, one of Italy’s oldest coachbuilders has used a version of the original Fiat 500 favoured by the rich and famous, the Fiat 500 Jolly, to produce a modern version, the Fiat 500 TenderTwo.

The original Fiat 500 Jolly was produced by Ghia and sold from 1958 to 1966. It was known in Italy as La Spiaggina, the nearest English translation for which is “Beach-ette”. Its cut down, doorless sides, lowered windscreen, chromed bodywork and whicker pattern seats made it popular with owners such as Yul Brynner and Aristotle Onassis who used them as yacht tenders, golf carts and estate runabouts.

That use of the original Fiat 500 Jolly as a yacht tender — it was small enough to be lifted on and off yachts so it could be used while in port — has inspired both the name of the new car — the Fiat 500 Castagna TenderTwo — and its style. As well as the removal of the doors and side and rear windows to produce an open car, as well as wicker-patterned upholstery from the original car, the TenderTwo has a teak rear deck and the trim is in marine quality, with stainless steel and more teak completes the trim. Under the teak deck is a storage compartment for beach towels and the roof and tonneau covers.

But two other features show that this new car is, unlike the original car, mechanically totally different to its normal brethren. There is no exhaust pipe at the back and sitting atop the dashboard is a new digital display panel that displays such useful information as battery charge and discharge, power consumption and gear position, all required because the 500 Tender Two is fully electric.

Produced in conjunction with the Swiss electric power experts, Mes-DEA, the 500 Tender Two uses a new type of ‘Zebra’ battery that not only provides excellent performance with a top speed of 130kph and a range of 140 km, it can also be re-charged significantly more quickly than other electric cars and without the requirement of special power supply. Using a normal domestic power source it go from flat to 80 per cent capacity in under four hours. Castagna and Mes-DEA are working on a long range hybrid version of the normal Fiat 500.

Meanwhile, the Fiat 500 Castagna TenderTwo will be built to order and individual specification in limited numbers like its predecessor, no doubt for the rich and famous.

Fiat 500 Castagna 500 TenderTwo s

Just as the new Fiat 500 was inspired the original Fiat 500, one of Italy’s oldest coachbuilders has used a version of the original Fiat 500 favoured by the rich and famous, the Fiat 500 Jolly, to produce a modern version, the Fiat 500 TenderTwo.

The original Fiat 500 Jolly was produced by Ghia and sold from 1958 to 1966. It was known in Italy as La Spiaggina, the nearest English translation for which is “Beach-ette”. Its cut down, doorless sides, lowered windscreen, chromed bodywork and whicker pattern seats made it popular with owners such as Yul Brynner and Aristotle Onassis who used them as yacht tenders, golf carts and estate runabouts.

That use of the original Fiat 500 Jolly as a yacht tender — it was small enough to be lifted on and off yachts so it could be used while in port — has inspired both the name of the new car — the Fiat 500 Castagna TenderTwo — and its style. As well as the removal of the doors and side and rear windows to produce an open car, as well as wicker-patterned upholstery from the original car, the TenderTwo has a teak rear deck and the trim is in marine quality, with stainless steel and more teak completes the trim. Under the teak deck is a storage compartment for beach towels and the roof and tonneau covers.

But two other features show that this new car is, unlike the original car, mechanically totally different to its normal brethren. There is no exhaust pipe at the back and sitting atop the dashboard is a new digital display panel that displays such useful information as battery charge and discharge, power consumption and gear position, all required because the 500 Tender Two is fully electric.

Produced in conjunction with the Swiss electric power experts, Mes-DEA, the 500 Tender Two uses a new type of ‘Zebra’ battery that not only provides excellent performance with a top speed of 130kph and a range of 140 km, it can also be re-charged significantly more quickly than other electric cars and without the requirement of special power supply. Using a normal domestic power source it go from flat to 80 per cent capacity in under four hours. Castagna and Mes-DEA are working on a long range hybrid version of the normal Fiat 500.

Meanwhile, the Fiat 500 Castagna TenderTwo will be built to order and individual specification in limited numbers like its predecessor, no doubt for the rich and famous.

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