The first Ferrari, the 125 S (known as the 125 or 125 Sports), had a short but intense life. In fact, the model was only used in Ferrari’s first year in business, 1947. Just three were built and they took part in 12 races (total 14 starts), clocking up six wins, two seconds and one fifth position.
The 125 began life as a two-seater sports car but there were two types of bodywork: one with covered wheels and the second with open wheels and individual mudguards. The former version was known as the 125 C and could race in single-seater races as the mudguards and headlights could be removed and a panel to cover the second seat could be added (if required).
The C in question stood for “corsa” (racing) or “competizione” (competition) and also involved some tweaking of the initial 125 S’s engine and the gearbox. This version made its debut at the Terme di Caracalla circuit in Rome where driver Franco Cortese was unfortunately forced to retire before the end of the race.
The Ferrari 125 S (named after the 125cc unit displacement of a single cylinder as most of the future Ferrari models will also do) was designed by by Gioachino Colombo and finished by Giuseppe Busso.
The 125 S debuted at the Circuito di Piacenza, driven by Franco Cortese, but was unable to finish the race. But 14 days later the carclaimed its first victory at the Grand Prix of Rome on Caracalla.
The 125 S was powered by 1,5 liter 60° V12 engine that produced 100 hp at 7,000 rpm with a compression ratio of 8.5:1. It was a dual overhead camshaft design with 2 valves per cylinder and three double-choke Weber 30DCF carburettors.
The car featured an impressive and very elegant design: large grilles in the front of the car that aid in cooling of the brakes and engine, two headlamps built into the fenders. It comes in right-hand drive configuration with two separate windscreens protecting the driver and passenger.
In our day the 125 S was presented at the 2006 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance and a few months later at the Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance.