‘Italy: Red Passion’ Classics On Display At Autopromotec

FCA Heritage at the 28th Edition of Autopromotec

An exhibition entitled “Italia: la passione in rosso” (“Italy: Red Passion”) will be organised in Bologna during the biennial aftersales event to pay homage to the Italian ingenuity, creativity and passion for motors.

Autopromotec, the International biennial event dedicated to automotive equipment and aftermarket products, will be taking place from May 22 to 26. First launched in 1965 and held in the Bologna Fair District, the prestigious event is organised by Promotec, the services company owned by AIRP (the Italian tyre retreaders association) and AICA (the Italian association of automotive service equipment manufacturers).

In addition to the usually interesting calendar of conferences and meetings, the 2019 edition will house the “Hybrid & ADAS Village” in open-air Area 48 of the fair district dedicated to testing various ADAS safety systems and the “Italia: la passione in rosso” (“Italy: Red Passion”) exhibition curated by Ruoteclassiche with six red vintage cars on show. FCA Heritage will be taking part in the area set up in the Quadriportico of the fair district with four rarities picked of its historical collection, namely a Fiat 1100 S (1948), an Abarth 2400 Coupé (1964), a Lancia Rally 037 (1982) and an Alfa Romeo SZ (1989). Completing the line-up will be a Giannini 500 TV (1970) and a Ferrari 328 GTS (1987) owned by private collectors.

Red has always been the colour of passion, in addition to being that of Italian sports cars since the 1920s when black paint was replaced by bright red. Alfa Romeo, Maserati and later Ferrari painted their racing cars with this colour so that spectators could distinguish the Italian teams in international championships. According to a scheme established by the association that would later become the International Automobile Federation, French cars were to be blue, German cars white (and later silver), British car green and Italian cars, as mentioned, red. That is why Autopromotec organised the retrospective presenting six Italian-made masterpieces, all strictly red, to celebrate the ingenuity, creativity and passion for motors.

Fiat 1100 S (1948): The sportiest version of the pre-war 1100 (nicknamed “Musone”) was created in 1947. Designed by Dante Giacosa, it had an aerodynamic type body without bumper. It featured fender skirts covering the rear wheels and fitted a four-cylinder engine delivering 51 HP at 5200 rpm derived from the one used on the Cisitalia 202. It had a top speed of 150 km/h. The mechanical particularities of the car included lubrication system with oil radiator, centrifugal water pump and crankshaft arranged on four main bearings. A total of 401 units were made. The car scored many important racing successes, like the fifth place at the 1947 Mille Miglia and three good placings (second, third and fourth absolute) in the same race the following year.

Abarth 2400 Coupé (1964): In 1959, Carlo Abarth decided to launch a range of grand tourers which were high-performing yet elegant and understated at the same time. The top of the range was the Abarth 2400 Coupé Allemano, the latest evolution of the mechanics of Fiat 2100/2300 flagship with a straight-six engine. The new body was an evolution of the previous projects and style exercises, the perfectly balanced blend of two designs suggested to Abarth by coachbuilders Ezio Ellena and Serafino Allemano (who would build the car until 1962). It is estimated only a few dozen were made. What is certain is that Carlo Abarth keep one for herself, using it for daily commutes and for holidays in his native Austria. Surprisingly, Abarth decided to display one on his stand at the Geneva Motor Show in 1964, despite the model had already been discontinued.

Lancia Rally 037 (1982): Known to the general public as the 037, the Rally was made by Lancia from 1982 to 1983 to compete in the World Rally Championship. The street-legal version fitted a 1995 cm³ straight-four mid-mounted longitudinal engine with 16-valve header, supercharged by a volumetric compressor capable of developing 205 HP at 7000 rpm and propelling the car to a top speed of 220 km/h and from 0 to 100 km/h in less than 7 seconds. Engineered by Sergio Limone, it was very successful, winning the World Rally Manufacturers’ Championship in 1983 among other achievements. It was the last 2WD car to win the respective world championship and the only one to prevail on the most advanced 4WD cars.

Alfa Romeo SZ (1989): Alfa Romeo revealed the SZ at the Geneva Motor Show precisely thirty years ago, in 1989. The two letters stand for Sprint and Zagato, the Milan-based coachbuilder whose name was already linked to some legendary Alfa Romeo cars of the past. The operation was conducted at the bequest of CEO Vittorio Ghidelli who at the beginning of 1987 gave the green light to the Experimental Sportscar 3.0 project, code name ES 30, which would become the SZ. From a technical point of view, the SZ exploited tried and tested components derived from sporty and racing versions of the Alfa Romeo 75. Examples of this are the floor bed and the braking system without ABS and with internally-mounted rear discs, near the differential, where the gearbox and the clutch are also fitted in a transaxle layout. The engine is a 60° V-6 developing a power of 207 HP at 6200 rpm and a top speed of 245 km/h.

FCA Heritage
Founded in 2015, FCA Heritage has the mission of protecting, promoting and showcasing the history of the FCA Italian brands. A month ago, in April, FCA Heritage presented the Heritage Hub, the fluid and creative multifunctional space that houses the department, to the international press in Turin. It is a storytelling space, an evocative and evolved building, where interaction and connectivity offer a contemporary view of the glorious history of the company and its brands. The Hub is located in the former Officina 81 in Via Plava, part of the sprawling industrial area of Mirafiori, time-honoured factory and landmark of the inventiveness and engineering of Turin that is generating fresh energy today. The 15,000 m2 of the Heritage Hub house over 250 vehicles. The authentic gems of the FCA Heritage collection – some never shown to the public before – transform the site into an educational and exciting place. More than a traditional museum, it is as a three-dimensional archive in constant growth and an incubator of ideas to be enjoyed on guided tours.

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