1953 FIAT 8V FIXED HEAD COUPE
Chassis No. 19
Engine No. tba
Red with black leather interior.
Engine: overhead valve V8, 1,996cc, 115bhp at 6,500rpm, two Weber 36 DCZ3 carburettors; Gearbox: four-speed manual with synchromesh on the upper three ratios; Suspension: independent all round with enclosed coil springs and telescopic dampers; Steering: worm; Brakes: drums all round. Right-hand drive.
Fiat is one of Italy's oldest and greatest car manufacturers and, although remarkably successful in early motor racing, has made surprisingly few real sports cars. The Turin firm won the French Grand Prix in 1907 and again in 1922 when Nazzaro won the race at 79.10mph in a 2-litre Fiat. Yet the first notable sports car to emerge was, arguably, the 1934 Fiat 508 'Balilla', following several class wins by various Fiats in the Mille Miglias of the late 1920's and early 30's.
Fiat sprung something of a surprise at the 1952 Geneva Motor Show when they introduced their next competition car, the two-litre vee-eight engined 8V. It was designed for motor racing and became very successful, its long and distinugished record including the 2-litre GT Championship of Italy in 1954. The light alloy V8 engine was novel in that the angle between cylinder banks was 70° to keep the unit narrow, and the 8V's chassis was of tubular steel; suspension was independent all round using components from other Fiat models. Dante Giacosa supervised the design and, because only 114 8V's were constructed during the two year production period, they were mostly hand built. Similarly, the steel bodies were hand crafted at Fiat, Ghia or Zagato and welded to the chassis frame. The body shape was evolved in a wind tunnel. The 8V chassis and running gear was used by Fiat to take a gas turbine engine for research in 1954.
This stunning example is in excellent condition but showing a nice patina and trace of use. The steel bodywork, with aluminium bonnet, is original and beautifully restored. The interior has black leather covered bucket seats, the door trim is black, the roof lining and carpets grey. It has a wood rimmed steering wheel. The engine bay is beautiful and the recorded mileage 34,550. The car was initially sold in Italy, then went to England where it stayed from 1963 to 1973 and subsequently to Switzerland. It has been owned by the vendor since 1984. It is an unusual, charismatic and eminently useable sports car, a perfect entry for the 1000 Miglia and similar events.