The first rear-engined Fiat, with all-independent suspension and monocoque construction, the 600 was a quality small car with adequate space for four people. The 600 was designed at a time when fuel supplies were restricted and there was a need to economise. It was also devised as a small car but one with the capacity to transport four people in comfort, and have space for their luggage.
In achieving this criteria, the designer chose a rear engine layout to allow the maximum amount of interior space to be used for passenger accommodation. Fine tuning of the chassis has meant that the car enjoys tenacious roadholding, something that the motorsport fraternity was quick to realise; thus, the 600 became a familiar sight on the rally scene.
The 600 also became synonymous with specialist tuners and converters, none more so than Carlo Abarth who took delivery of his first Fiat 600 in 1956.