In 1946, Bandini started building and creating several small racing cars including the 750 Sport Internazionale which was built from '57 till '61. It was created with the sole purpose of racing the Italian Championship (called Sport Internazionale) but was also very successful in the United States.
At first, these cars were equipped with Crosley engines but due to a change in regulations, 850cc and 1000cc were also allowed. This is the only one with a Bandini Bialbero engine.
Little is known or documented about Bandini's total production but it is believed that 75 cars were built, of which 46 are still known to this date; including 8 "Saponetta's". The 750 Sport Internazionale received this nickname because of the 'soap bar' shaped body.
This particular example raced in Italy - with several Italian pilotes including Cecchini and Lombardi at the wheel - before it moved to the Netherlands in 1977. The Dutch owner is great connaisseur and collector and had the engine restored by Bandini in 1980.
The Bandini was restored to concours condition from 2000 to 2007. The car was acquired by its current owner in 2014. More recently, in 2017, the engine was revised again.
There is no known original Mille Miglia participation but a unique car like this will certainly be eligible for participation. Thanks to the magnificent looks and history, this is a much sought after and (personally) one of the most beautiful models made by Bandini.
Etceterini.com is dedicated to the history, documentation and preservation of etceterini cars. By definition etceterinis are hand made small displacement Italian racing cars which were produced from the late 1940's to the early 1960's. Most of these beautiful cars used Fiat running gear and had their own chassis, hand hammered aluminum bodies, and engines. They raced throughout Europe in races such as the legendary Mille Miglia and also competed heavily in American SCCA racing.
Ilario Bandini was born in Forli Italy a farmer’s son. He was trained as a mechanic and in 1936 traveled to Africa where he made a small fortune. He returned to Forli in 1938 and opened his own shop and then a Lancia dealership. His first racing car, produced in 1946, featured a fiat chassis (which was cut in half in order to avoid it being appropriated during WWII), a tuned Fiat 1100cc engine, and a hand hammered aluminum body by Rocco Motto. From then on he concentrated on producing purpose built racing cars to compete in races such as the Mille Miglia in Italy and the SCCA series in America. His biggest success in America came in 1955 (Gandolph Vilardi) and 1957 (Melvin Sachs) when a Bandini Siluro won the SCCA National Class H Modified championship.
Ilario Bandini moved on to the Saponetta "envelope body" racer starting in 1957, these raced with 750cc, 850cc, and 1000cc engines. In 1959 he produced one of themost successful and beautiful Formula Juniors. Bandinis won SCCA Class HMod races well in to the mid 1960’s, Alex Vazeos 1955 750cc Twin Cam Siluro was undefeated and won the SCCA Southwest Regional Championship from 1961-1963 and the Mark Brinker Saponetta took 3rd in the National Hmod class in 1961.
Bandini continued to make one off racing cars well into the 1980’s and the great "Drake of Forli" passed away in 1992. 75 Bandini cars were produced and 46 are known to exist in the world today. Ilario Bandini's Nephew, Dr. Dino Bandini, has honored his Uncles memory by creating the Ilario Bandini Museum in Forli, Italy.