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1948 Fiat 1100 S
Why am I an Automotive Masterpiece?
The 1100 S was Fiat’s first post-war sports car, but it had a strong lineage with the pre-war 508C “Nuova Balilla” 1100, appeared in 1937. The car was intended as a Mille Miglia racer for the 1100cc class, the most popular at the time. The 1100 S was based on the light and rigid X-member frame of the 1100 B saloon. It featured a tuned engine and a dramatic streamlined body by Fiat which was loosely based off the pre-war 508 CMM with the peculiar "Gobbone" tail which had proved to be particularly effective for efficiency and helped the car achieve nearly 160 km/h. The two-seater body was produced by Carrozzerie Speciali at Fiat’s own Officine Lingotto under the direction of Giuseppe Cogno. Several of the early cars have a badge with this script on the body. The 1100 cc engine offered significantly more power than its predecessor and produced around 50 bhp. The S-spec engine had different camshafts and valves, a lubrication system with oil cooler, a centrifugal water pump with redesigned radiator and a crankshaft placed on four main bearings. Wind-tunnel testing allowed the 1100 S MM to reach speeds of 150 km/h, and 1100 S MMs gained 5th through 9th overall positions at the 1947 Mille Miglia, followed by a 2nd and 3rd overall in 1948. A number of 401 units of the 1100 S were made, but we suspect this might be an overambitious number that includes several other body styles. The chassis numbers went from 500001 to 500401. Despite the race purpose of the model, many 1100 S were sold to normal customers, convinced by the high speeds (over 150 kph) allowed by the powerful engine.
Just following, the 1949 Fiat 1100 S Berlinetta is the first example of small series Pinin Farina cars built for Fiat. The 1100 S was followed by the 1100 E/S that was the sports version of the 1100 E saloon.
Chassis 1100S*500107* is a “family business” since the car has always been property of the same family. The history of this car is unique, a family dynasty that passed down not only the passion for racing and especially the Mille Miglia, but also the car that would follow the Rollinos, generation after generation. The car, showing from registration to today the license plate AL 23238, took part in the 15thedition of the Mille Miglia in 1948, with the crew of Giulio Rollino - Silvio Poggio, race number 1015, finishing at 25 place overall. It took part at the 16thedition of the Mille Miglia in 1949, with the crew Giulio Rollino -Angelo Rollino, race number 544 (current livery), finishing in 61stplace overall. It took part at the 20thedition of the Mille Miglia in 1953, with the Giulio Rollino - Fedele Diana crew, race number 356. The same car participated in many historical reenactments of the Mille Miglia from 1987 to 1994 with the Roberto Rollino - Carla Gaslini (Rollino’s wife) crew, gaining the overall victory in 1988, with the number 101, entering a female name for the first time in the golden register of the race and debunking the cliché of the "first in Rome, never first in Brescia". It took part in 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2018 with the Roberto Rollino - Angelo Rollino crew, achieving the record of three generations of the same family with the same car at the Mille Miglia.