Papal and Presidential FIATs
By Rosario Mariani, http://www.europebychoice.com
While many heads-of-state love to arrive at the White House in a big and luxurious limousine, Pope Francis chose a simple FIAT 500L, which is more suitable for a common man than a world leader. Pope Francis wanted to convey that his Papacy is based on modesty and simplicity.
But this story is more about FIAT and our U.S. Presidents. In the 1980’s, our struggling President Barack Obama could not afford a new car, so he saved a few hundred dollars and bought an old, beaten-up, FIAT Strada. The car served him well despite its many mechanical issues. When time came for him to give a thumbs-up on the merger between FIAT and Chrysler he said, “I love FIAT.” The deal was done.
In the 1960’s, President Johnson needed a small car to get around his huge Texas ranch with ease, and with his trusted dog jumping in and out at will. He settled for a FIAT 500 Giardiniera. It’s hard to imagine how a 6’4’’ Texan got into a small Italian Cinquecento, but he did – quite comfortably.
No other presidents owned FIATs, but when it came to governing they often got their way by relying on Executive Fiat instead.
Maybe, Fiat should consider introducing a new FIAT Executive model!
Rosario Mariani is the owner/CEO of Europe By Choice, which promotes travel to Italy and other select European countries. He has more than 40 years of experience in the travel industry, previously serving as Director of Italy Product for Italiatour and Club ABC Tours, and also in other positions with EuroFly, Alitalia and Air France.