Automakers gear up for 2014 Mille Miglia race in Italy

Mille Miglia, a famous car race in Italy, started on May 14 and continues through May 18. This year, some of the major automakers return to the race.

By , Guest blogger

  • close
    Actor Adrien Brody, right, and Esmeralda Brajovic sit in the cockpit of their Mercedes at the start of the "Mille Miglia" historical endurance for classic and vintage cars race, in Brescia, Italy, Thursday, May 15, 2014. The race will conclude on May 18.
    View Caption

The original Mille Miglia was a point-to-point race on public roads in Italy, held annually from 1927 through 1940, then again from 1947 through 1957. Many now famous race cars ran the course, from Brescia to Ferrara to Rome and then back to Brescia, and many drivers made their name in the grueling course.

Unfortunately, the event was banned following the 1957 running, as two separate crashes claimed the lives of three participants and nine spectators. But in 1977, to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the original Mille Miglia (Italian for “1,000 Miles”), the event was re-staged in modified form, and continues to be run today. Modern cars now compete in the Rally 1000 Miglia, while vintage entries celebrate the event’s glory days in the Mille Miglia.

This year, some of the major automakers are once again participating. They include Bentley, BMW, Jaguar and Mercedes-Benz, among others. Bentley is competing with two of its famous 4 ½ Liter supercharged Blowers: the 1930 Le Mans ‘Team Car’ once owned by original Bentley Boy Sir Henry Birkin, and a former company demonstrator Blower. BMW has brought an original Isetta as well as two 507s and four 328 historic racers. 

Recommended: Are you a smart car buyer? Take the quiz.

Jaguar, meanwhile, has 10 separate cars on hand ranging from XKs to C-Types and even a D-Type. The British automaker also got comedian Jay Leno to come along. He’s partnered with Jaguar design boss Ian Callum to drive a 1951 XK 120 roadster finished in original Ecurie Ecosse livery.

Finally, Mercedes-Benz, which celebrates 120 years of motorsport this year, has a varied collection of cars present including a 1928 SSK, a 1930 SS and a handful of original SLs. The German automaker also has its famous racing drivers Jochen Mass and Bernd Schneider on hand.

The 2014 Mille Miglia kicked off on May 15 and concludes on May 18.

The Christian Science Monitor has assembled a diverse group of the best auto bloggers out there. Our guest bloggers are not employed or directed by the Monitor and the views expressed are the bloggers' own, as is responsibility for the content of their blogs. To contact us about a blogger, click here. To add or view a comment on a guest blog, please go to the blogger's own site by clicking on the link in the blog description box above.

Share this story:
 
 
Make a Difference
Inspired? Here are some ways to make a difference on this issue.
Follow Stories Like This
Get the Monitor stories you care about delivered to your inbox.
 

We want to hear, did we miss an angle we should have covered? Should we come back to this topic? Or just give us a rating for this story. We want to hear from you.

Loading...

Loading...

Loading...