Racing car equipped with a powerful engine of over sixteen liters, characteristic for the distribution overhead valves arranged in a V of 90 °. In 1907, three examples of this car, driven by Felice Nazzaro, Vincenzo Lancia and Louis Wagner, participated in the Grand Prix of the Automobile Club of France, held on the circuit of Dieppe. Nazzaro won, with an extraordinary average speed of 113.612 km/h.
The 1907 will remain a memorable year in the history of the automobile. It will be the year of the Beijing-Paris, it will be the triumphant year for Fiat, and also a fundamental year for the increase that it will determine in the mechanical development of all sectors. The international sporting calendar is dominated by three competitions: the Targa Florio, along the Madonie circuit, the Emperor’s Cup, on the Taunus circuit, and the French Grand Prix, in Dieppe. Three different formulas regulate the three races: the limitation of the bore; the limitation of the displacement; the limitation of the consumption. In order to take part in all three races, Fiat, like the other European manufacturers, found itself in the need to design and build, in the space of a few weeks, three different models, each with certain characteristics, in order to respond to each race formula. Fiat’s technical manager is now lawyer Carlo Cavalli, who has taken the place of engineer Enrico. A singular figure of designer, he is in love with competitions and devotes himself body and soul to the design of those three very different mechanical parts, which will be entrusted to a team of drivers led by Felice Nazzaro. The three cars will go down in history as the Fiat 28/40 HP “Targa Florio”; the “Fiat Taunus”, the Fiat 130 HP “Grand Prix de France”: all three with four-cylinder vertical twin-block engines, four gears, chain transmission, pedal brake on the differential, wooden wheel rims, BT magnet ignition system. But the 130 HP, called F2, the car on display here, was the most powerful: a monster of sixteen liters of displacement, with a power of 135 HP and a weight of 1025 kg, a speed of 160 km / h, with peaks of 200 km / h. It was a real trio of aces because Nazzaro triumphed in all three races, ensuring a position of dominance to Fiat and the Italian automotive industry that until a few months before was unimaginable. The French Grand Prix race is considered Nazzaro’s masterpiece race. He starts very cautiously in order to save fuel, the driver, who already has victories at the Taunus and the Targa Florio behind him, gradually increases his pace according to a chronometric scheme, until he gives all the possibilities of his car in a final crescendo. The overall average is over 113 km/h, an average that Nazzaro reached by meticulously dosing his consumption: after his victorious arrival, when he examined the tank, he found out that out of the 230 liters of gasoline he was allowed (he was allowed to consume up to thirty liters every 100 km, for a distance of 770 km) he managed to save twelve. The Italians who have witnessed his feat are in delirium: Italy is in triumph.
Presented by Fiat S.p.A., Torino
Engine: 4 cylinders, two-piece block
Capacity: 16,286 cc
Max. power output: 130 bhp at 1600 rpm
Max. speed: 160 km/h
Weight: 1025 kg