As exciting as any stilettoed Sophia Loren, a Cinquecento turns my head in Italy every time. The adorable little car seems to have that effect on a lot of people.
Debuting on July 4,1957, the Fiat 500 [“Cinquecento" means "500.”] was born of humble origins. The car was introduced around the same time as the Volkswagen Beetle and Britain's Mini as a vehicle for the common man—a practical and affordable way to get around. It is said, also, that the Cinquecento was the first car designed especially for city life. Measuring just ten feet in length when it was introduced, this car could navigate the tiny passages of medieval roads.
In a country where glamour and first impressions matter so much—there's a term for it: "bella figura”— it's fun to see that this pudgy veteran workhorse has become a beloved symbol of the country and something to whistle at in its old age.