“It was a good race and from Rome onwards I never had any doubt that I should win” Tazio Nuvolari – 1930 Winner Mille Miglia
Back home in Indiana excitement is building as the 97th running of the Indianapolis 500 is scheduled to begin in 6 days, 38 hours and 37 minutes. Racing fans all over the world look forward every May to the thrill of the Brickyard for the agony and the ecstasy of an event that has been called “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing.”
But before the gentlemen and ladies of the Indy 500 start their engines, there is another thrill to be had on the international racing stage with the vintage and classic cars of Italy’s Mille Miglia, an open-road endurance race that ran May 16-19 along the original Brescia-to-Rome route with some minor variations (due to areas affected by the earthquake in Emilia Romagna in May 2012).
An estimated 4 million Italian spectators and others from around the world relived a history of road racing that begin in 1927 with cars and drivers like Tazio Nuvolari , who won the 1930 race in his Alfa Romeo, reaching celebrity status. 415 cars were selected for this year’s race from 1,575 registrations based on their history and record of achievements including Ferrari, Alfa Romeo, Fiat, Maserati, Bentley, Porsche, Jaguar, Aston Martin, Lancia, BMW, Bugatti and Mercedes-Benz.
Sport’s car enthusiasts will not want to miss the stunning pictures of the cars of the Mille Miglia posted all over the Internet including fotos from the following sites.
I love espresso. I love Fiat. But do I love them both enough to option the in-car espresso kit on the new Fiat 500L. Expected to arrive in the U.S. beginning next year, the 5 passenger 500L offers an integrated Lavazza Coffee Experience Kit as part of its option package. Although the decision to offer the in-car espresso kit to the American market has not yet been made, it will be available to European buyers. The kit promises a fresh brewed true Italian espresso made in vehicle, no barista required.
Coffee loving motor-heads like the idea of having an “espresso to go” but those concerned about distracted driving think that this is taking convenience to the extreme. Fiat representatives report that the system could be used only when the car is stopped and that the machine has a docking station in which the system remains locked. To brew or not to brew may be the question the next time you’re out for a drive in your new Fiat 500L where we’re told the L stands for long . . . not Lavazza.
Fiat finally arrives in the US and this weekend I finally get to test drive la macchina del mio sogno (the car of my dreams), the new Fiat Cinquecento. The dream makers were April and Boris from Northside Fiat in Indianapolis. I drove a Bianco Perla 500 Cabrio(convertible) with a tessuto grigio/avorio (gray/ivory) interior. I think this car was made “expressly” for me. The 500c’s multi-positional power cloth top roof retracted as quickly as a perfectly pulled shot of espresso. So much so that I got to thinking about what the 500 would look like in a dark roasted brown. At the Fiat USA web site you can build your own 500, choosing roofs, interiors, wheels, accessories and graphics including a red, white and green body side stripe decal for hard-core Italianophiles. I clicked on the color choices and a wash of espresso brown filled in the image. Very nice but I clicked again, this time on mocha latte which made the car look good enough to eat or drink or . . . well the car is just so much darn fun. Reviews describe the car as one of “emotional design and rational appeal with a high level of standard features and personalization options”. I would add that the Fiat 500, the first car I drove in Italy, in performance and design did not disappoint in the US .