The Fiat S76 was once the fastest thing in the world. Bar none, end of story, it was the fastest manmade object ever created. It’s 1,726ci, four cylinder engine made nearly 300hp and propelled the thing to speeds of over 140mph. With Arthur Duray driving the car 101 years ago (December of 1913) in Belgium, on public roads no less he recorded the speeds over a measured kilometer. It was a one way speed and there were other “anomalies” that were present at virtually every speed record setting event during the era but the car was a genuine bad ass for its era and equivalent to modern day space travel and people were chuffing along on trains or behind the clop of a horse’s hooves. WWI came a few years later and all of a sudden the battle was to survive, not to see which country could produce the fastest car or the driver brave enough to pilot it. The Fiat S76 was largely lost to history after its triumph in the ‘teens but that’s all changed now.
The Fiat S76 lives again thanks to dedicated craftsman, historians, and people who simply have skills that we don’t know of words to use to describe properly. The massive car, it’s massive engine, and its bombastic personality live again and filmmaker Stefan Marjoram was there to document the final stages of the build including the final assembly and first fire up of the crazy beast. When you see and hear the 28-liter engine fire up in this video it is like a four cylinder blast furnace lodged in the front of a tractor frame. The car is slightly more basic than a granite block. Imagine traveling 142mph in this thing with virtually no brakes (only in the rears and they were hand operated drums), tires that make a bicycle’s look huge, and noise that sounded as though it was coming from the depths of hell itself.
For us, the most impressive moment in this video is when the engine is CRANK started. You’ll see the guy grunt the crank around on a compression stroke and the huge engine actually stakes a second to explode to life but when it does it nearly rocks the entire works onto two wheels! That second between the crank and the BOOM of it firing is amazing. This whole thing is amazing and we cannot wait to see what the rest of the film looks like. Teaser action here! The Beast of Turin looks incredible.