I have been obsessed with cars ever since I was small, my preference has always been towards the ordinary and mundane. Not that I would dismiss the thoroughbred or sports car, but if push came to shove and I had 5 exposures of film left and I was faced between capturing a Porsche or a Simca parked next to each other, the chances are the Porsche would only be part of the background.
The interest in older mass-produced foreign-built family cars was not generally a focus in car magazines until the early ’90s and by the 2000s their presence at shows was generally welcomed, no doubt due to the generational demographic shift in ownership profiles.
Today there are shows almost exclusively dedicated to the type of cars your parents owned. The Fiat 131 SuperMirafiori is a good example of this. Parked in a section of the classic car park area of the recent Beaulieu Autojumble, under the banner of the Forgotten Favourites banner was Mark’s well-preserved Fiat.
As a twin-cam powered family sedan with some surprisingly slick design touches, it was a brisk and stylish alternative to the Ford Cortina. This LHD example was imported from Italy and has been with Mark for almost 10 years. Like many classic car aficionados, his motivation for owning one stems back to his younger years and he actively sought out the best example he could find.