Two Fiat 850s, a saloon and a coupe, recently undertook a 24-hour run at Snetterton. Driven by a team of six, the cars completed the run without attention, apart from refuelling. The 850 saloon completed 551 laps (1,494 miles), at 62.3 m.p.h., and 28.45 m.p.g. It required 1 1/2 pints of oil. The 850 coupe completed 572 laps (1,551 miles), at 64.6 m.p.h., and 22.48 m.p.g. One pint of oil was required for topping-up. One tyre on each car was changed for precautionary reasons but otherwise neither car required any maintenance. Both cars used Esso fuel and ran on Pirelli Cinturato tyres.
The test was carried out under R.A.C. observation, starting at 12-noon, February 2nd. By dawn the following morning the coupe had averaged 68 m.p.h., and the saloon 64 m.p.h., when dense fog enveloped the circuit, accompanied by icy patches. From then, until 9 a.m., visibility on parts of the circuit was down to 25 yards, and speeds had to be greatly reduced. In the last three hours conditions improved and the drivers were able to increase speed. The run was carried out with the blessing of Fiat (England) Ltd., who provided the two cars from their Press fleet. The cars were completely standard. Both were equipped with Smiths radios and Cibie Oscar iodine vapour lamps. The drivers were M. Dashwood, sales manager of James Young Ltd., A. Bailey, Fiat service manager, Jack Barclay (Service) Ltd.; two members of the Fiat service department, R. Bannister and J. Ball, both of whom are service inspectors. The other two drivers were J. McLaughlin and J. Bryning, friends of the team and what fun they must have had. “Professional” record-breaking is out of most drivers’ reach these days, so we commend local publicity runs of this kind.