Five times world champion


Ferrari 166 F2 - 1948


Ferrari 166


Year of the project: 1946
Year of construction: 1948
Project manager: Giachino Colombo
Plant manager: Luigi Bazzi

Body type: Grand Prix Monoposto

Chassis type: tubular stringers with an oval cross-section and longitudinal crossbars with rectangular section. The aluminum panels of the body were welded to a structure of tubes joined together.
Distance between axes: 2160 mm
Trail: 1270 mm front and 1250 mm rear
Weight: 700 Kg
Maximum speed: 240 Km / h
Engine: V12 at 60 degrees
Block: built of light alloy
Crankshaft: 7-bank
Bearings: connecting rod and metal rose bench
Diameter x stroke: 55 mm x 52.5 mm
Total displacement: 1496,7 cc
Maximum power: 230 HP at 7000 RPM
Compression ratio: 6.5: 1
Camshafts: one for every 6 cylinders
Distribution: with front chain transmission
Feeding: a Weber 50 WCF triple body carburetor
Compressor: one Roots of a stage of 1.1 atm in front of the block
Valves: 2 per cylinder operated by seesaws
On: two magnets - one per row of 6 cylinders
Lubrication: dry carter
Refrigeration: by water, with centrifugal pump and radiator
Box: 5 gears and recoil - side lever
Front suspension: independent by deformable parallelogram, with lower transverse elastic and Houdaille hydraulic shock absorbers
Rear suspension: independent oscillating axle shaft with longitudinal arms, lower transverse elastic, Houdaille shock absorbers
Brake: drum, with separate hydraulic control for the front and rear axle
Direction: deformable quadrilateral to the center, worm screw, and sector
Tires: Borrani of the Rudge type
Tires: Pirelli - Front 5.50 x 15 and Rear 6.50 x 16
Fuel tanks: rear tank capacity 120 lts
Fuel: mixture based on 80% methyl alcohol, 10% ethyl alcohol. Benzol 5%, acetone 2% petroleum ether 2%, castor oil: 1%


Origin and evolution

The program of 1946 foresaw the construction of a race monoposto, so Enzo Ferrari hired the engineer Giachino Colombo - for the construction of a Vl2 engine in order to beat the Alfa Romeo 158.

Under the direction of the Chief Engineer of Ferrari, Luigi Bazzi, in 1948 Engineer Colombo built a 1500 cc engine, V12 cylinders at 60 degrees with a camshaft by cylinder cap for the Ferrari 125.

In 1949, a new unit with a dual-body compressor is ready to achieve an increase in power. It was the model "125" that had three versions - the Sport, the monoposto of special cars and the one of F2 of the world-wide championship of 1952-1953.

The powers vary from 75 HP to 5400 RPM for the "Sport" to a more reasonable value of 118 H.P. at 6800 r.p.m. for the competition monopod with one-stage Roots compressor and one overhead camshaft per cylinder side (two in total).

The number 125 is the identification number that indicates the cubic centimeters per cylinder.

In the two years of competition of the 125, important changes were made. The initial independent rear suspension and oscillating semi-axle were replaced by the Dion bridge, which guaranteed a better race on the track. On the motor was experimented with roller bearings as bench support and after the 1948 version with a camshaft at the head and chain command, a double tree was adopted at the head - four in total, which gave movement by the back to the two magnets (1 per 6 cylinders) - with command to gears that also gave movement to the compressor

In 1949, that engine with double compressor and double overhead camshafts per cylinders reached 280 HP at 7500 RPM.

Fangio debuted with the 125 models at the Monza Grand Prix in 1949, achieving the victory after overtaking Ascari, Villoresi, and Bonetto who manned the official cars. That Ferrari and another similar one, bought by the government in 1949, were left for the Escudería Argentina. Fangio ran hers 18 times, achieving a total of 9 wins.

This Ferrari 125, emerged victorious from the circuits in which the Alfetta 158 of the same displacement was absent, 1500 cc and 8 cylinders in line, which although older, its experimentation had given better results and remained undefeated in each presentation.

For this reason, the Ferrari 125 with compressor had a short life, despite the regulatory possibility of the nascent formula one ('50 and '51) and formula two ('52 and '53).

It was replaced by the 4500 cc monoposto without compressor for the first two years and by the 166 or 2000 cc for the F2.

This machine, according to the publication that is presented, can take different names: Ferrari 2000, Ferrari 125 F1, Ferrari 166. But we, we only try to name it as 166 F2 or FL depending on the case.

Ferrari took a custom very common for the time, to name the machine according to the cubic capacity of each cylinder. For example, we know that the 166 had a 12-cylinder V engine. This quantity multiplied by its capacity (166 x 12) gives us as a result 1992 cc. of engine displacement. For the regulation, it is rounded up to 2000 cc.

This rounding and margin of error are often due to the fact that every motor has wear in its normal operation, which increases the cubic capacity of each cylinder and therefore the total displacement. If a new engine, we build it in the limit of the regulation (Suppose that the regulation stipulates a maximum displacement of 2000 cc.) We will find after a few kilometers of operation, that the engine is out of regulation and automatically disqualified.
The chassis that I bought the Automobile Club Argentino was something different between them. The first (popularly known as "The short") was a "Formula" version (F), while the second (The long) was a version called "Grand Prix" (GP).

Anyway, any of these chassis could be called 125 F1, 166 F2 or 166 FL, depending on the engine that will be placed.

Ferrari as an argument for sale, manufactured the engines with the same supports and connections so that any of these chassis could be used in the three main categories that were used for the development of competitions of monoposto.

If any journalist tried to denominate a Ferrari of these years by visual photographic comparison and without taking into account this detail, he made the mistake of naming it in the wrong way very easily.

The ACA, only buy V12 engines of 2000 cc. of atmospheric aspiration for the category 2 and V12 of 2000 cc. with compressor for the Formula Libre competitions.

Therefore, it is wrong to call them 125 F1 since these machines were never equipped with 1500 cc engines. with compressor. For more than the chassis that would be used if it admitted it. Moreover, it is worth mentioning that the 125 engine was smaller than the 166 and less powerful than the 166FL engine.

For the races with the regulation of the Formula 1, the ACA had the Maserati's 4CLT of its property.


Fangio along with Benedicto Campos make up the Argentine Competition Team "Aquiles Varzi", established near Milan, in the home of Eng. Menotti Varzi in Galliate. It amazes Fangio, winning with Auto Argentino Club cars, the first four consecutive competitions in which it participates: San Remo, Pau, Perpignan, and Marseille. He also wins in Albi, France, Triunfa in Monza, with the new Ferrari 125 that he receives three days before the race, beating Ascari, Villoresi, and Bonetto of the official team.

The Ferrari 125 - F1 - 1949, had the same engine as the previous one but with a compressor of 1.4 atm the power was increased to 280 hp at 7500 RPM. It now had double overhead camshaft, multiple disc clutch, block box with self-locking differential ZF, De Dion bridge, 2320 mm wheelbase, front gauge 1200 mm, rear 1250 mm, weight 600 Kg, the fuel tank of 140 liters... Despite this resizing, the car maintained the conditions of indocility

To this car, Fangio ran him in 18 opportunities achieving a total of 9 victories.


museum schedules

  • 10 A 17 HS

    Business days

  • 10 A 18 HS

    Weekends and holidays

  • 10 A 18 HS

    January and February

museo juan manuel fangio

Dardo Rocha (18) esq. Mitre (17)
Tel/fax +54-2266-425540 - CP 7620
Balcarce - Buenos Aires - Argentina

tickets price

  • $ 9000


  • $ 6500


  • $ 5500


  • $ 5000

    Special Agreements

  • $ 0

    Audio Guide

Contact Us