1953 Ferrari 500 Mondial
Ferrari is known for its elegant and robust 12-cylinder engines, but the 500 Mondial features a four-cylinder. Born in the post-World War II economy that was recovering from near devastation, the Mondial was built to fill the demand of professional and gentleman drivers seeking the podium. A four-cylinder could generate better low end torque and enable quick corner exits. The lighter overall weight was also an advantage. Drawing from the 500 F2 that dominated grand prix racing in 1952 and 1953, the Mondial was well balanced and quick. With coachwork from either Pinin Farina or Scaglietti – depending on if the car was series one or series two – it resembles the form of the 375 MM berlinettas and spyders of the era. Proving the formula was viable, Alberto Ascari and Luigi Villoresi scored a class win and second overall in the Mondial’s debut race at the 12 Hours of Casablanca.