Monday, June 5, 2023
Ferrari Tipo 166 Inter Coupé Pre Show Prep

Back in the summer a very special car made its way to MD Allen Engineering in Norfolk. The classic car specialist have worked on many interesting projects including AC Ace, Maserati, E Type Jaguar, Morris Minor, Riley Specials, Crossley, and many Ferrari models, old and new. It was their proven experience with the prancing horse that brought this Ferrari Classiche certified 1949 Ferrari Tipo 166 Inter Coupé to their workshop ahead of its debut at Salon Privé, where it would take place in the 70 years of Ferrari celebration.

Mark at MD Allen Engineering is a big fan of Autoglym, and when we heard he had a special job on, we wanted to get involved to ensure the team had the best products on hand to ensure this Ferrari gleamed. As fewer than 40 of these cars were ever produced this was a great opportunity to show what the products could do on a rare canvas.

The Process

Despite arriving looking pretty clean already, you need to remember that this was going to be entered into a Concours competition, where perfection, cleanliness and originality are everything. What may be clean to the average Joe, is filthy to a Concours judge. Images and text provided by Mark at MD Allen Engineering.

The car arrives at our workshop after Car Fest north, very dusty! The underside also needing attention as the car is still used on the road.

The car carefully jacked up outside, and wheels removed. We used Engine & Machine Cleaner on the chassis, wheel arches and underside of the engine, also the gearbox and rear axle. The underside was then pressure washed. The engine bay was then treated with Engine & Machine Cleaner and pressure washed also. While still wet, we applied a coat of Vinyl & Rubber Care.

The removed wheels. The treads were full of dried mud, and side walls very dirty, with no product on them to protect. The rims and spokes in very nice condition, but dull. We pre cleaned with Custom Wheel Cleaner, as it is acid free, and would not tarnish the alloy or damage the plating. After working the cleaner into the wheels and tyres, we pressure washed off. After temporarily re fitting the wheels, we washed the car with the superb new UHD Shampoo, and dried with the trusted Hi-Tech Aqua Dry. The wheels in the workshop, thoroughly cleaned. After polishing the rims front and back with metal polish, and the wheel centres and spokes, we treated the sidewalls and tread with High Performance Tyre Gel. Fantastic results.

After touching in some of the paintwork on the chassis and exhaust, the underside was checked carefully on one of our hoists, and further cleaned where necessary. A further application of Vinyl & Rubber Care followed.

The ‘egg crate’ grill was removed, and bugs and flies cleaned out from the radiator fins behind. The grill was then polished to a high lustre with Metal Polish before re fitting. The side trims and door steps were also quite dull, we buffed with Metal Polish again to restore the shine.

The interior was in lovely condition, but needed cleaning. The seats were easy to remove, being retained in a slider at the rear, and a single wing nut at the front! The carpet was then vacuumed thoroughly, and cleaned with Interior Shampoo. The pedal area received special attention, then the seats cleaned before re fitting. The dashboard and instruments were carefully cleaned with Super Resin Polish, and the spokes on the wonderful wooded steering wheel finished with Metal Polish.

We cleaned the paint with Surface Detailing Clay Kit, using Rapid Detailer as a lubricant. This removed tar spots, traffic film and some tree sap from the roof. Next, we carefully polished the whole car with Super Resin Polish to remove any light scuffs before buffing off with our microfibre cloth.

The next step was to apply a protective coating of High Definition Wax. Using the provided applicator, we spread the wax out evenly over the car in a circular motion, using light pressure. Once the whole car was treated, we buffed the paintwork with the red microfibre from the kit. The result was a deep shine, that will give lasting protection.

The finished car ready for collection, ready to take part in Salon Privé.

The car in position at the show. We are delighted to report that after all that hard work the car was rewarded with a trophy. The immaculate 166 Inter won the ‘Survival of the Fittest’ trophy.

Model History

Enzo Ferrari had begun planning his new car during the war and in 1946 commissioned Gioacchino Colombo to design a small-capacity V12 engine for it. The 1.5-litre Tipo 125 unit took its designation from the capacity of an individual cylinder (125cc), thus instigating a system of nomenclature that would characterise Ferraris for many years to some. Ferrari’s Tipo 125 sports-racer made its competition debut in 1947 and by mid season had been re-designated Tipo 159, its engine having been enlarged to 1.9 litres. Later in the year the first Tipo 166 (2.0-litre) unit appeared. In race tune up to 150bhp was available – the Inter road car with its single twin-choke Weber carburettor produced 100bhp – which was transmitted via a five-speed gearbox, an unusual feature in those days, even on a competition car.

This car is one of fewer than 40 Tipo 166 Inters made. In keeping with tradition, the car was built with right-hand drive – it being deemed safer to sit on the right when driving across the Alps, which at that time were cursed with poor roads lacking in safety barriers(!).