The Fiat Turbina was a gas turbine-powered concept car built by Italian car manufacturer Fiat in 1954.

Fiat Turbina
Also calledFiat 8001 Turbina
DesignerLuigi Rapi[1]
Body and chassis
Body style2-door berlinetta
LayoutRear mid-engine, rear-wheel-drive
EngineFiat type 8001 gas turbine
Wheelbase2,400 mm (94.5 in)[2]
Length4,370 mm (172.0 in)[2]
Width1,610 mm (63.4 in)[2]
Height1,255 mm (49.4 in)[2]
Kerb weight1,050 kg (2,315 lb)[2]

Fiat was the second car manufacturer, after Rover, to introduce a car propelled by a gas turbine—Fiat touted the Turbina as "the first turbine car built in Continental Europe". The project took a long period of planning, studies began in 1948 and ended with a first track test on 14 April 1954 on the rooftop track of the Lingotto factory.[3] The car was first publicly shown on 23 April 1954 at the Turin-Caselle Airport, where it made some demonstration runs with Fiat chief test driver Carlo Salamano at the wheel. All major Fiat personalities were present, including Gianni Agnelli, president Vittorio Valletta and engineer Dante Giacosa, director of the technical office and responsible for the car's development. The Turbina was then displayed at the ongoing 36th Turin Motor Show.[4]

The turbine engine was placed amidships, behind the passenger compartment. It consisted of a two-stage centrifugal compressor, three can-type combustors, a two-stage turbine driving the compressor, and a single-stage power turbine with a geared reduction to the rear wheels. There was no gearbox or clutch. According to the manufacturer the engine produced 300 PS (220 kW; 300 hp) at 22,000 rpm, and the estimated top speed was approximately 250 km/h (160 mph). The bodywork had undergone wind tunnel testing at the Politecnico di Torino facilities, with tests showing a drag coefficient of Cd=0.14 on a one-fifth scale model of the car.[5] By comparison, a 2017 Tesla Model 3 has a drag coefficient of Cd=0.23.[6]

The concept was shelved due to high fuel usage and problems with overheating.

The Fiat Turbina is on display at the Automobile Museum of Turin.[7]

See also edit

References edit

  1. ^ "Turbine Speed with Style". Retrieved 6 November 2019.
  2. ^ a b c d e Fiat—Tutti i modelli del Novecento. Vol. II. Editoriale Domus. 2010. pp. 294–295.
  3. ^ "È nata con la turbo-car automobile dell'avvenire" [With the turbo-car tomorrow's automobile is born]. Stampa Sera (in Italian). 24 April 1954. p. 6. Retrieved 18 January 2018.
  4. ^ Farinelli, Aldo (24 April 1954). "La Fiat ha realizzato una vettura a turbina" [Fiat has made a turbine car]. La Stampa (in Italian). p. 2. Retrieved 18 January 2018.
  5. ^ Ludvigsen, Karl. "Turbine Speed with Style". Hemmings Daily. Retrieved 17 February 2009.
  6. ^ "Press Kit" (Press release). US: Tesla. Archived from the original on March 15, 2018. Retrieved March 4, 2018.
  7. ^ "Fiat Turbina". Retrieved 14 September 2015.