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Isotta Fraschini Type FE


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#1 alfa8c

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Posted 13 October 2011 - 08:29

The 1908 coupe des voiturettes at Dieppe allowed four cylinder engines whereas previous events were for singles and twins only. IF ran three Type FEs with four cylinder sohc engines and were the fastest of the fours (although not as quick as the faster singles and twins). In Borgeson's Bugatti book on page 52, there is a photo of Alfieri Maserati (who had driven an IF at Dieppe) supposedly with an FE in Argentina. Contacts in Buenos Aires have found no record of Maserati racing an IF out there although Francisco Chiesa (race number 1) DNF at Mar del Plata in March 1909 but the engine dimensions quoted seem to rule this out as being an FE (or its production variant FENC). Does anyone know if Alfieri Maserati did indeed go to Argentina (to race or to maybe deliver a car) - or even have a photo?

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#2 Tim Murray

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Posted 13 October 2011 - 09:16

This is from Anthony Pritchard's Maserati: A History:

It was soon after Carlo’s death [in 1910] that Alfieri, taking with him sixteen-year-old Ettore, went to the Argentine to work at the Buenos Aires factory of Isotta Fraschini. While these two Maserati brothers were in South America they built a racing car based on Isotta components and ran it in a number of local events. Alfieri and Ettore returned to Italy in 1913 ...



#3 Tim Murray

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Posted 13 October 2011 - 10:23

... and, from this Automobile Quarterly article on OSCA:

Alfieri became an accomplished technician and an analytical test driver for Isotta Fraschini. In recognition of his expanding portfolio of skills, the Milanese firm, by now the leading constructor of luxury automobiles in Italy and anxious to take its products international, asked Alfieri and Ettore to establish a sales and service facility in Buenos Aires to seek and maintain customers among the Italian community in Argentina. In order to grow Isotta’s international presence the brothers were asked to do the same in London before being offered a post at home in Bologna in 1912.

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#4 alfa8c

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Posted 13 October 2011 - 10:39

... and, from this Automobile Quarterly article on OSCA:


Other similar references are available via Google.


Thanks Tim for that. What I was hoping for was some info or photo of the Type FE racing in Argentina, basically confirming that at least one FE went there? I wonder how many cars (and what types) Maserati managed to sell out in Buenos Aires!

#5 Roger Clark

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Posted 13 October 2011 - 11:21

An article in Automobile Quarterly Vol 12 says "When Carlo (Maserati) returned to Bianchi, Bindo became Isotta's chief tester and the two remaining brothers subsequently found themselves in Argentina working on a mysterious Isotta racer about which nothing much has ever been learned." It goes on to say that the Coupe des Voiturettes Isotta didn't race again.

This was written in the early 70s.

#6 robert dick

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Posted 14 October 2011 - 09:04

This photo was published in "Lo Sport Fascista"/December 1929/article written by Alfieri Maserati, showing Alfieri Maserati at the wheel of an Isotta voiturette racer, with the comment: "Maserati in Argentina sulla 1500 Isotta-Fraschini speciale":

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#7 David McKinney

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Posted 14 October 2011 - 10:40

Reportedly (source unknown) raced by Alfieri M in Argentina in 1911