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Nardi “Silver Ray” & the Alfa Romeo Connection

 The Grand Prix formula changed at the end of 1937 limiting engines to 3-liters (supercharged) or 4.5-liter (unblown) so the 4.5-liter V12 supercharged engines that had been used in the 1936/37 Tipo C Alfa Romeos became redundant. At least two were converted to marine use in racing speedboats and powered Antonio Passarin to much success in 1938 and 1939.

Probably four others were converted to normally aspirated format, which also necessitated new castings for the lower half of the crankcase which featured a four bolt fixing into the side rails at the front of the engine, as well as at the back. Installed into an 8C2900A type frame, these became the Tipo 412 sports cars of 1939. The Touring body was similar to the lovely 8C2900B Mille Miglia cars but more muscular (we might say “on steroids” now).

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