The Stanguellini Museum is a tribute to Vittorio Stanguellini, one of those famous Italian “wizards”. He was obviously a car enthusiast, car tuner (especially Fiat, but also Alfa Romeo and Maserati), designer and manufacturer of engines and racing cars. Vittorio Stanguellini took over the family business at a very young age following the death of his father, who had developed a Fiat dealership in Modena.
In addition to commercial development, Vittorio soon became interested in racing, preparing Fiat for the race. Optimizing engines and lightening cars, he quickly gained a national reputation, before building his own racing cars. The museum is now managed by his granddaughter Francesca.
In the first hall, we discover the Fiat Tipo 1 of 1908 bought by Vittorio’s father, the very 1st car registered in Modena as evidenced by its 1 MO plate (for Modena). Remaining in the family since, it symbolizes the origin of the family passion for the automobile. We then enter the exhibition part of the museum, separated into 2 spaces. The first is dedicated to the cars and engines built by Vittorio, and the whole world of racing associated with them. The second exhibits a beautiful collection of (sports) touring cars assembled by Francesco Stanguellini, Vittorio’s son.
The Stanguellini racing collection features a dozen cars, and the museum strives to expand this collection as opportunities arise. With Formula Junior and F3 single-seaters, and Sport category “barchettas”, they are representative of Vittorio’s constructions. Indeed, if he was a competitor and friend of Enzo Ferrari in the 1930s and 1940s, he then specialized in smaller cars and engines. It was both a question of means, but also of loyalty to Fiat, of which he was an important dealer. A great friend of Vittorio Stanguellini, Juan Manuel Fangio gladly tested his creations and advised him in developments.
The Formula Junior Stanguellini, very popular in Europe and the United States, raced in the hands of famous drivers such as Briggs Cunningham, Bandini or Von Trips. More than a hundred were built, and many still make gentleman drivers happy in today’s vintage car racing. One of the iconic models is the “Delfino” (dolphin), recognizable by its pointed bow (hence its name) and its exhaust curiously installed above the engine hood.
The other specialty was the small Sport barchettas powered by 750cc and 1100cc engines, and which raced both national and international events such as the 24 Hours of Le Mans or the Targa Florio. Many bodies have been used, according to advances or aerodynamic research. The cars were always very light, Stanguellini having mastered the lightening of the parts while maintaining the necessary rigidity. The Colibri is a single-seater equipped with a 250cc Moto Guzzi engine, with a body designed for speed records. It set several international records at Monza in 1963. Stanguellini has also partnered with Bertone to design a small 4-seater or 2+2 sports coupe built on a Fiat base, powered by a 1100cc engine. Around hundred cars were produced.
A series of decorative screens separates the “manufacturer” space from the collection of tourism automobiles that exhibits about thirty cars. The Italians dominate in numbers, with Alfa Romeo, Fiat, Lancia but also Ferrari and Maserati. Some rather rare cars, such as an Alfa Romeo Giuletta Sprint Speciale (Bertone body), a Lancia Aurelia B20 Coupé or a Fiat Dino cabriolet ( Pininfarina body), are displayed alongside a Maserati Khamsin, a Ferrari 512BB or a Ferrari 599 GTB, only the best as we see! Some beautiful foreign cars complete the picture, like 3 Porsche including two 356 coupe and roadster, and 3 Jaguar, including an E-Type and an XK150.
Next to the cars
Vittorio Stanguellini had also developed a homemade racing engine, 750cc, very light and very powerful aluminum block, which rose to 9000rpm, remarkable for that time. This engine allowed the Stanguellini to win many races.
In a corner of the “Collection” hall, there are several motorcycles, including MV Agusta, maybe the most legendary Italian motorcycle. In fact, they are replicas, and this corner is a tribute to Danilo Tavoni, a former Stanguellini mechanic who had become the Maestro of the motorcycle replica, and in particular of MV Agusta. Given the price of these motorcycles, some owners preferred to leave them in their garage and ride with a replica, but a very well made one. So there are some motorcycles, tools and parts that allow you to admire the work of the Master.
At the other end of the hall, an exhibition of Maserati and Ferrari engines precedes the workshop. Vittorio Stanguellini often couldn’t find the tools or equipment he needed to test or validate his developments. In this case, he designed and manufactured them himself. Some, such as the engine test bench, were then built in small series for other manufacturers or tuners. Man’s capacity for innovation and creativity was infinite!
The walls are covered with photos that tell the sporting history of the manufacturer, period posters, but also many objects and tools related to racing, as well as engine or body parts. The museum offers souvenir T-shirts and a book (in English and Italian) dedicated to the manufacturer.
|The private Stanguellini Museum can be visited on request and by guided tour only|
|Open Monday to Friday from 9:30 am to 1:00 pm and from 2:30 pm to 6:30 pm|
|On request, tours can be arranged for groups also on Saturdays and Sundays|
|Visits can also be booked through the Modenatur reservation centre|
|Youth (6 to 12 years old)||10,00 €|
|Children (under 6 years), PMR (and accompanying person), journalist||Free|
|Groups, per person, 1 free ticket every 15 people||15,00 €|
|Small free parking in front of the museum|
|Closed and covered parking for groups coming with cars|
The photos on this page belong to Automobile-Museums, no use or reproduction is allowed without the prior written consent of the owner.
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