Ferrari 159 S

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Ferrari 159 S
Automotive industryFerrari
2 produced
PredecessorFerrari 125 S
SuccessorFerrari 166 S
Car classificationSports car
Automobile layoutFR layout
Internal combustion engine1.9 L (1903 cc) Colombo V12
Automotive designGioacchino Colombo

The 159 S was designed to be the successor to Ferrari's first vehicle, the 125. Unlike its predecessor, which won six of 14 races earlier in 1947, the 159 had a short racing life and was quickly replaced by the 166 SC for the following racing season.

Like the 125, the 159 used a steel tube-frame chassis with longitudinal and cross members and had a Double wishbone suspension with transverse Leaf spring in front with a Live axle in the rear. However, Gioacchino Colombo's V12 engine was enlarged from 1.5 L (1497 cc/91 in³) in the 125 to 1.9 L (1903 cc/116 in³) for the 159. This engine produced 125 hp (93 kW) at 7,000 rpm, retaining the three double-choke Weber carburetor 30DCF Carburettor of its predecessor. Both cars sported five-speed manual transmissions and retained the Fiat tradition of mounting the engine in-block with the gearbox.


Two 159s were built, numbered 03C and 04C. The oldest Ferrari car still in existence with an undisputed pedigree is a 166 Spyder Corsa number 002C, which was originally a 159 and is currently owned and driven by James Glickenhaus.


The 159 S debuted on August 15, 1947 at the Pescara Circuit with the company's driver, Franco Cortese. Although it led overall for a time, the class-winning 159 S eventually fell behind the Stanguellini of Vincenzo Auricchio. Like the 125, the 159 S was unable to beat Maserati's Maserati 6CS for much of the rest of the 1947 season. However, at the Turin Grand Prix on October 12, the car was able to shine, with French driver Raymond Sommer claiming overall victory in the single 159 S entered.


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