1946-type Cisitalia D46 Monoposto Corsa  Chassis no. 27

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Lot 793
1946-type Cisitalia D46 Monoposto Corsa
Chassis no. 27

£ 25,000 - 28,000
US$ 32,000 - 36,000
1946-type Cisitalia D46 Monoposto Corsa
Chassis no. 27
Italy’s now legendary, pioneering postwar competition car constructor Piero Dusio established his renowned Cisitalia company in Turin in 1946 – very much encouraged and abetted by dynamic racing driver/engineer Piero Taruffi.
Dusio was already a successful industrialist and he hired another exceptionally bright young engineer named Dante Giacosa to design and build for him what would be, in effect, a ‘poor man’s racing true. It was to be a true centerline single-seat open-wheeled racing car, created around basically Fiat production components to minimise its cost and Dusio conceived running a flotilla of the cars as a kind of ‘circus’, traveling not only around Italy but also around Europe and the wider world beyond to resume profitable motor racing as quickly as possible in spite of postwar austerity and profound recession.
The little Cisitalia D46 as penned by Giacosa was a revelation – introducing what would become the modern form of multi-tubular ‘spaceframe’ chassis construction to maximize rigidity while minimizing weight – thereby to obtain the best performance possible from the mildly tuned Fiat 1100cc 4-cylinder engine chose for motive power. The rigid chassis would also offer good standards of road holding and cornering power, and the D46 – from ‘Dusio 1946’ - proved highly successful and the Cisitalia ‘circus’ races, in which competition between the top drivers contracted was intensely serious and absolutely genuine, proved tremendously popular to a public starved of sporting spectacle and light relief.
The Cisitalia D46 made its debut in Turin in September 1946 with Dusio winning and the great French Champion Louis Chiron third. Later that year Tazio Nuvolari finished second place in a D46 at Mantua. In 1947 Taruffi won 1100cc class Italian Championship in a D46, Felice Bonetto was almost as successful in the cars, and other D46 stars included Achille Varzi and even Britain’s George Abecassis. Dusio ran an all-Cisitalia race in Cairo, Egypt, which saw Franco Cortese victorious from Alberto Ascari and Taruffi.
The fleet of D46s continued racing in Italy through 1948 but early in 1949 Dusio’s empire collapsed. Carlo Abarth was prominent in keeping some D46s active into 1950, while Frank Kennington brought the first D46 into England, racing it here at Goodwood.
This evocation of a Cisitalia D46 monoposto corsa racing car has been made to the same design as that of Piero Taruffi’s 1946-47 D46, while the engine is a tuned derivative of the 4-cylinder 1100cc Fiat unit with dry-sump lubrication, as used originally in period.
We understand that this is the prototoype remade car produced by original constructor Piero Dusio’s two sons, living in Buenos Aires, Argentina and working in association with the ‘Pur Sang Argentine Constructors’. A new Cisitalia company was created at Parana, Argentina, to construct new Tipo 202 sports and GT cars, and this D46 prototype was created and displayed at the official company launch.
This D46 prototype subsequently appeared at the Parana historic race and remains unique, the Dusio brothers’ project having ceased operations soon after its launch.
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