In 1925 Bugatti built a series of 5 Type 39’s, confusingly these cars are externally identical to the Type 35’s but the Type 39’s differed by being powered by short stroke straight eight motors of 1.5 litres / 91 cui capacity.
The Type 39’s first appeared in the a 590 mile touring event run on the Monthlèry GP circuit fitted with full road equipment, including lights, wings and hoods as well as a self-starter. The type 39’s beat all comers including cars fitted with larger motors to secure a 1,2,3,4 result with ‘Meo’ Constantini leading the parade home after nearly 12 hours of racing.
Four weeks later the same five cars divested of their touring appendages appeared in the Italian Grand Prix where they again ran against larger 2 litre competition and finished third, fourth and fifth after Goux in the fifth placed car having led until sidelined near the end with a holed fuel tank.
#4604 featured today, seen driven by David Hands at Prescott, was one of two sold to Australians, it was bought by it’s previous owner in 1936 and sold to the present owner in 2005 who had it recomissioned by Charles Knill-Jones Tula Engineering. One lucky enthusiast saw #4604 at a petrol station not so long ago and was offered a ride in it, see the video above.
Thanks for joining me on this “Short Stroke Straight Eight” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !