The reliability problems of the race-bred aluminum 2-litre V6 unit lead to its replacement in 1969 by a new 2.4 litre cast-iron V6 engine developed by Fiat. Both the Dino spider and the coupe were fitted with this unit, as well as the (Ferrari) Dino 206 GT, now named the 246 GT. This engine was developed parallel to the one fitted in Fiat's new luxury sedan, the 130, a 2.9 litre V6 introduced that same year yet remarkably different in design.
The new engine was heavier than the old one, but its increased power output and reliability more than made up for that. It offered a 2418 cc displacement and 180 hp @ 6600 rpm, which made a top speed of over 210 kph available to the spider. The weight of the spider model grew from 1150 kg to 1240 kg.
Other significant changes were the cable operated clutch (was hydraulic), the enlarged radiator, the electric ignition system, the electric brake servo (instead of mechanical which didn't work with stalled engine) and wider tires. All in all the Dino 2400 was a different and better car than its seemingly similar 2-litre predecessor.
With the new independent suspension and more flexible engine the Dino 2400 was a pleasure to drive, equally at home in city traffic as in engaging challenging twisty roads at a sporty pace. A downside to the spider was its relative lack of body rigidity, rendering the car somewhat unstable while driven on bumpy roads at high speed. Also exiting corners on wet roads could be tricky as the rear of the Dino 2400 had the tendency to snap out when the torque came in, even though it had a limited slip differential. On the other hand the powerful engine made keeping control over the car pretty easy.
With only 420 units produced the Fiat Dino 2400 spider is a rare sight. In spite of that its current value roughly equals that of its more common 2-litre predecessor.
Thanks to Charles E. Bates for supplying these wonderful pictures of his car. You can visit his Fiat Dino Technical Page (a work in progress) by clicking the link.
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