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1923 Itala 56/A Corsa

All photography work is copyrighted by the author, please don't download and publish these pictures in the internet without my permission! 

Larger high quality pictures is available only for donators up on request! Vasileios Papaidis 2017 © All Rights Reserved

The Type 56 is light at an unfortunate moment for the Itala, found themselves in crisis after the end of World War II: in 1917 the Turin factory produces aircraft engines Hispano-Suiza license but the end of the conflict leads to a drastic reduction of orders.

The only solution to survive, then, is to realize cars. The Type 56, although it is the smallest model in the range, it is not cheap: only the frame is sold at a price which is equivalent to 20,000 EUR of our days (imagine the cost of the body, be entrusted to specialists) .


The technique
The Itala Type 56 is fitted with a 2.0 petrol engine different from 2 liters which equips the most famous Type 61 in 1925, who won the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1928 in its category.


The Itala is a piece of history of our country, the Type 56 no. This explains such low prices (€ 33,000) for a car so "dated". It may be interesting for fans of the pre-war vehicles, especially for those who go in search of vehicles very difficult to trace.

The history of the brand

Itala was an exotic car manufacturer based in Turin, Italy from 1904-1934, started by Matteo Ceirano and five partners in 1903.

Three cars were offered in the first year, an 18hp, a 24hp and a 50hp. In 1905 they started making very large engined racing cars with a 14.8 Litre 5 cylinder model which won the Coppa Florio and the year after that the Targa Florio. In 1907 a 7433 cc 35/45hp model driven by Count Scipione Borghese won the Peking to Paris motor race by three weeks. These sporting successes helped sales dramatically, the company continued to grow. The company experimented with a range of novel engines such as variable stroke, sleeve valve, and "Avalve" rotary types and at the beginning of WW1, offered a wide range of cars. During the war Itala built aeroplane engines but made a loss producing them.

After the armistice car production resumed with models based on the pre war cars such as the Tipo 50 25/35hp and a re-appearance of the Avalve in the 4426 cc Tipo 55 but financial success eluded the company

From 1924 the company was being run under receivership and they appointed Giulio Cesare Cappa from Fiat as general manager. He produced a new car, the Tipo 61 with 7 cylinder alloy engine which was well received but he then decided to return to motor sport producing the Tipo 11 a very advanced car with front wheel drive, V-12 supercharged engine and all round independent suspension but the car never raced. Two Tipo 61s did take part in the 1928 Le Mans 24 hour race winning the 2 litre class.

The company was bought by truck maker Officine Metallurgiche di Tortona in 1929 and a few more cars were made up to 1935. The remains of the company was sold to Fiat.

The most successful model of Itala was the

Itala 35/45 HP (Beijing - Paris) 1907


1907 Itala 35-45 HP Pechino Parigi

Engine 4 cylinders

Displacement 7433 cc

Power 45 hp at 1250 rpm

Speed 95 mph

Weight 1370 kg

This historic car that in 1907, with the crew made up of Prince Scipione Borghese, mechanic Ettore Guizzardi and Luigi Barzini, special correspondent of Corriere della Sera, won the 60 day race from Beijing to Paris, sponsored by the French daily Le Matin. The Italian car preceded the closest opponent by 20 days, after overcoming natural pitfalls and obstacles of all kinds, scattered across the 16,000 km (9,941.96 miles) route. With two huge side tanks for gasoline attached to the car especially for the race the Itala (later called Beijing - Paris) was driven by an over 7-liter engine with a 4 speed gearbox.

The four-cylinder Itala was produced from 1907 to 1915 at the Turin plant (between Corso Orbassano-Modane train, Racconigi course, during the Paris and Milan-Turin rail) from the joint-stock company Italy - Turin car factory, founded by Matteo Ceirano. It has a four-cylinder engine biblocco vertical, displacement of 7,433 cc of power but with only 45 hp at 1,250 rpm. He driveline as most cars produced by Italy and four-speed gearbox and reverse. The maximum speed not exceeding 95 km per hour.

The magnet power is low voltage. The starter is crank, lights, kerosene lanterns for the location and number plate and acetylene for the big lights. It has no front brakes or electrical system. Among other car company in Turin that are distinguished by many racing victories at the time, it goes down in history to have won the raid in 1907 Peking to Paris, or to have covered 16,000 km in 44 days.

The 35/45 hp Itala of Prince Scipione Borghese, assisted by mechanical Hector Guizzardi and journalist Luigi Barzini, Special Envoy of the 4-cylinder Itala car which won the Peking to Paris in 1907. Documentation Centre of the Automobile Museum, Turin [pdf] Daily Telegraph and the Corriere della Sera, in fact, part of Beijing June 10, 1907 to arrive in Paris on August 10. It is an historic day for Italian motor racing and the car that has character, discovered by Charles Biscaretti of Ruffia in the twenties, is now housed in the Museum of Turin. An Italy 35/45 hp also belongs to Queen Margherita of Savoy, which is used to call "Palombella. It is a vehicle finished with great refinement is a Landaulet with the front seats covered by the car roof and no doors, the back can be opened and seats and upholstery are covered with a braid worked in gray cloth, the sides are padded and quilted handles and reproduced the eagle Savoy. The price of the chassis alone is estimated between 18,000 and 17,500 pounds in 1908 of 1909-1910.

Photo Gallery

1923 Itala 56-A (2)
1923 Itala 56-A (16)
1923 Itala 56-A (6)
1923 Itala 56-A (15)
1923 Itala 56-A (11)
1923 Itala 56-A (9)
1923 Itala 56-A (5)
1923 Itala 56-A (12)
1923 Itala 56-A (14)
1923 Itala 56-A (10)
1923 Itala 56-A (3)
1923 Itala 56-A (7)
1923 Itala 56-A (8)


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