Officine Meccaniche

Officine Meccaniche or OM was an Italian car and truck manufacturing company. It was founded in 1899 in Milan as Società Anonima Officine Meccaniche to manufacture railway rolling stock and car production began in 1918. It disappeared as such in 1975, subsumed into Iveco, but still exists as a forklift builder.

Officine Meccaniche
Fateabsorbed (as part of the Fiat Group) into IVECO.
HeadquartersMilan, Italy (HQ)
Brescia, Italy (Automotive)
Railroad locomotives and equipment (Milan)
Cars and Sports Cars (Brescia, before 1934)
Commercial Vehicles (Brescia, 1925)
Miani e Silvestri&C-A.Grondona Comi&C
Officine Meccaniche-Milano-Brescia già Miani e Silvestri&C-A.Grondona Comi&C
OM Superba 665 1929 orange vr TCE
OM Superba 665 1929
OM 120 bucket truck
OM 120 truck


The inception of the company resulted from the merger of two companies, Grondona Comi & C and Miani Silvestri & C in 1899. Originally, OM manufactured railway stock. Car production started in 1918, using the plant of the former Brixia-Zust (Brixia-Züst), just after OM took over Zust car company of Brescia, Northern Italy. The first OM car, Tipo S305, primarily an old Zust model, appeared in 1918 with a 4712 cc four-cylinder side-valve in-line engine.

The OM cars era

Further models were Tipo 465 (with a 1327 cc four) in 1919, Tipo 467 (1410 cc) and Tipo 469 (1496cc) in 1921. 1923 saw an all new model, Tipo 665 'Superba' with a 2-litre six-cylinder engine. This model was extremely successful in racing, winning top five positions in the 2-litre class in 1925 and 1926 at the Le Mans but its greatest achievement was the victory in the first Mille Miglia race in 1927 where Ferdinando Minoia and Giuseppe Morandi led home an O.M. '123' at an average speed of 48.27 miles per hour (77.7 km/h) for 21 hours 4 minutes 48 seconds. Some cars were equipped with Roots superchargers.

In 1925 OM began to build trucks and buses, using licensed Swiss Saurer engines and other mechanical components. Ties with Saurer persisted through all of OM's history.

Fiat take-over and post-war years

OM was taken over by the Fiat Group in 1938 and in the following year passenger car production ceased, and OM became a commercial vehicle and train part manufacturer.

Main new product in the WWII post-war era was the Leoncino (1950) a light truck in the 2.0 to 2.5 tons range, which was an immediate success. It became the forefather of several series of heavier but structurally similar models, namely Tigrotto, Tigre, Lupetto, Cerbiatto and Daino, launched between 1957 and 1964. Bus chassis versions of several of these models were also available.

In the 60s and 70s the light and medium-weight OM truck ranges were sold in Switzerland as Saurer-OM or Berna-OM, in Austria as Steyr-OM, in France as Unic-OM, and in Germany as Büssing-OM.

The end of OM

In 1968 OM was definitively merged into the Fiat Group as a brand belonging to the Commercial Vehicles division, which also included Fiat and Unic.

In 1975 it was absorbed (as part of the Fiat Group) into IVECO and the OM brand disappeared from the truck and bus markets, although it still survives as an independent forklift manufacturer.


See also

External links

1926 24 Hours of Le Mans

The 1926 24 Hours of Le Mans was the 4th Grand Prix of Endurance, and took place on 12 and 13 June 1926. It was the first Le Mans race where the winner's average speed was over 100 km/h (62 mph), and also the first to break the 24-hour distance record set by Selwyn Edge at Brooklands in 1907.This year saw the entry of the Peugeot works team, after strong success elsewhere in touring and grand prix racing. Their competition would come from defending distance victors Lorraine-Dietrich and Bentley. Chenard-Walcker was a notable absentee, after being the pacesetter in the early years. The start/finish line and pits returned to its original point and extensive building of grandstands and spectator facilities was undertaken.

From the start the Peugeots set the pace chased by the Bentleys and Lorraines. As the others encountered mechanical issues, the experienced Lorraine drivers built a strong 1-2 lead that was never headed. A late charge by Bentley ended in the last hour when Sammy Davis could not stop in time and put the car into the sandbank at the end of the Mulsanne Straight.

First on distance was Robert Bloch and André Rossignol (repeating his 1925 triumph). Lorraine-Dietrich was just beaten to the Biennial Cup prize by the Italian Officine Meccaniche team, who won on a countback.

Antonio Baudo

Antonio Baudo was an italian motorcycle designer.

He established the Officine Meccaniche Baudo in Turin in 1921, making three prototypes that had V2 engines of 474, 668 and 1000 ccm. In 1926 they showed two models that used 250 and 350 ccm motorcycle engines from JA Prestwich Industries (JAP) and Blackburne (motorcycles).In 1925 he joined Paolo Motta and started Motta & Baudo, which made one prototype, the MB with a 1.35 liter Chapuis-Dornier motorcycle engine. With Augusto Monaco he created the Monaco-Baudo in 1927.

The Baudo brand was sold in 1929 to Joseph Navone who made a couple of Baudo-labelled cars.


Brixia-Zust (originally Brixia-Züst) was an Italian car manufacturer founded by engineer Roberto Züst, owner of Zust company of Milan. The affiliated company was situated in Brescia, Northern Italy. (Brixia is the antique Latin for Brescia.) These companies are often confused. The company made racing cars that participated in Targa Florio, an open road race in Sicily.

The most interesting model was the 10 hp in 1909, propelled by a three-cylinder 1495 cc engine. Car production ended—due to financial difficulties—in 1912. From 1918, when Officine Meccaniche took over the Zust company, the Brescia facilities were used.

FS Class 940

The Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane (FS; Italian State Railways) Class 940 (Italian: Gruppo 940) is a 2-8-2 steam tank locomotive, derived from the Class 740 tender locomotive.

FS Class ALn 772

The ALn 772 (Automotrice Leggera a nafta, Light Diesel motor car) series are a group of Diesel railcars built for the Italian public railway company Ferrovie dello Stato (FS) between the 1930s and the 1950s. As the first project in Italy to abandon the automobile-derived design and adopt a comprehensive "rolling stock" approach, it represents the link between the simple and sturdy Littorine and the modern Diesel units.

FS Class E.320

The FS Class E.320 was a class of Italian third rail electric locomotive built between 1915 and 1918. Five units were built and they saw service on the Varese - Milan - Porto Ceresio line. They were powered by two direct current electric motors, designed by Tecnomasio Italiano-Brown-Boveri (TIBB), giving a maximum speed of 95 km/h. The final assembly and the mechanical design were by Officine Meccaniche (OM). At the time of their construction they were the most powerful direct current locomotives in the world. The transmission of the motion to the three axles was by connecting rods and these were subject to frequent breakages.

The locomotives were soon replaced by Class E.321.


Fial (Fabbrica Italiana Automobili Legnano), direct translation Italian Automobile Factory Legnano, was a company that manufactured industrial and marine engines in Legnano. It was a part of Ghioldi Mechanical Workshops (Officine Meccaniche Ghioldi), which was founded by automotive pioneer Guglielmo Ghioldi in 1898 in Canegrate; the company moved to Legnano in 1902. In 1906 it entered the automobile business and manufactured one car, the Legnano Type A 6/8 HP. The car had a two-cylinder 1135 cc engine. Two years later, in 1908, the company was placed in liquidation after filing for bankruptcy. In 1909 the company was taken over by Rosa & Ferrario and car production ended. The 6/8 model was the only model they ever produced. The Legnano is at display on Museo Nazionale dell'Automobile in Turin.

Kohl Mythos

The Kohl Mythos (myth or story) is a German observation ultralight aircraft, designed by Stefan Kohl, and produced by S.A.I. Aeronautica, later by German Aircraft GmbH and most recently by Officine Meccaniche Mingarelli (OMM). When it was available the aircraft is supplied as a kit for amateur construction or complete and ready-to-fly.The Mythos started out as the S.A.I. Aeronautica G97 Spotter. Later, production was moved to German Aircraft GmbH and the design sold as the German Aircraft Sky-Maxx. After unsuccessful marketing, the designer decided to have the aircraft produced himself under contract in Italy by Officine Meccaniche Mingarelli and it was then sold as the OMM M-7 Servator.The Mythos is intended for the observation role and in particular agricultural research, forestry, law enforcement, flight training, sightseeing, aerial photography and cattle mustering.

OMP Racing

OMP Racing Spa (Officine Meccaniche Percivale) is a manufacturer of motorsport safety equipment and racing car accessories founded in 1973 and based in the area of Genoa, Italy.

OM X-series

The OM X-series was a light to medium-duty truck model produced by the Italian manufacturer OM in 1972. While being superficially similar to the OM Lupetto, Leoncino, Daino, and Tigrotto, it was an all-new design - except for using the same doors as the earlier "zoological" series (thus called as they were all named after animals). The X-series was sold under a variety of other names as well, depending on the market. All but the two lightest models were replaced by the new Z-series in 1976, a design which briefly used OM badging but ended up being marketed exclusively as an Iveco.

Officine Meccaniche (disambiguation)

Officine Meccaniche may refer to:

Officine Meccaniche of Milan

Officine Meccaniche Reggiane of Reggio Emilia

Officine Meccaniche di Roma, a subsidiary of Alfa Romeo

Officine Meccaniche (recording studio)

Officine Meccaniche (from 1962 to 1998 called Studi di registrazione sonora Regson) is a recording studio located in Milan, Italy. It was owned by Carlo e Umberto Zanibelli e Lidia Gualtieri from 1962 until 1998. Since then, it has been owned by Mauro Pagani, a long time violinist of Premiata Forneria Marconi.

Officine Meccaniche Giovanni Cerutti

Officine Meccaniche Giovanni Cerutti S.p.A. is an Italian joint-stock company headquartered in Casale Monferrato, which designs and manufactures rotogravure and flexo printing presses and related equipment for magazine and newspaper production, and for the printing and converting of packaging materials.


The Peugeot-Croizat was an Italian automobile manufactured from 1906 until 1908.

The automobiles were produced by Vittorio Croizat in Turin. Croizat was an engineer/inventor who invested in oil refining, invented lighting systems, and sold Rambler bicycles. On December 27, 1905, he founded the company Automobili Peugeot SA Brevetti for the production of automobiles. The brand name was Peugeot Croizat. Three months later the company was renamed in SA Italiana per la fabbricazione di Automobili Peugeot Croizat. President of the corporation was Giovanni Goria Gatti. In November 1907, the company was liquidated. Officine Meccaniche Torinese took over the production.

The company licensed vehicle designs from Peugeot, implementing their own modifications. The smallest model was the 6 HP, which corresponded to the Peugeot Type 69. However, the displacement of the single-cylinder engine was increased to 695 cc. There was also the 12/16 HP, which was based on the Peugeot Type 71. The four-cylinder engine had 2205 cc.

Piero Remor

Piero Remor (Porto Venere, Italy, 1896 - Rome, 1964) was an Italian engineer and motorcycle constructor, best known for his work for the Gilera and MV Agusta brands.


Officine Meccaniche Reggiane SpA was an Italian aircraft manufacturer, owned by Caproni (Count Giovanni Battista Caproni) and situated in Reggio Emilia, a city of what today is the Emilia-Romagna region. The first aircraft produced was the medium bomber Piaggio P.32bis, which had been developed from the Caproni Ca.405C Procellaria.

Reggiane would eventually become famous for its agile single-seat fighter aircraft. When World War II erupted, Reggiane's fighters were taken over by the Regia Aeronautica (the Italian Air Force). Other fighters found their way to the German Luftwaffe and to the Hungarian and Swedish Air Forces.

After the end of World War II, the Officine Reggiane was occupied by workers who begun a conversion of the production geared towards the civilian market, in a pattern similar to the nationwide wave of factory occupations of the years 1920-1921.

Renato Balestrero

Renato Balestrero (27 July 1898 – 18 February 1948) was an Italian racecar driver from Genoa, winning 54 out of 217 races between 1922 and 1947.Born in Lucca, he lived in Genoa and was active in the first world war. He started out in an Officine Meccaniche 665 winning the Coppa Ciano 1924 and several events in the 1925 Grand Prix season and 1926 Grand Prix season, including the I Tripoli Grand Prix 1925.

He then bought a Bugatti T35C for 75 000 francs which he raced 1927 and 1929. As an agent to General Motors he raced the newly launched La Salle (automobile) in 1928. Other cars included a Talbot 1700 (1931), as well as Alfa Romeo 8C 2300, Alfa Romeo P3 and Fiat 1100 cars.Since before the second world war, he ran the Scuderia Balestrero, which including himself, Giovanni Balestrero and Clemente Balestrero. Since 1953 the Lucca-based Scuderia Balestrero has been active.Balestrero died in the Niguarda Hospital of Milan, after being hit in a roadside accident by a Gazzetta dello Sport car. He was hauling an engine to the Nardi Danese workshop.

Società Italiana Ernesto Breda

Società Italiana Ernesto Breda, more usually referred to simply as Breda, was an Italian mechanical manufacturing company founded by Ernesto Breda in Milan in 1886.


Zust (originally Züst) was an Italian car manufacturing company operating from 1905 to 1917.

The company was founded by engineer Roberto Züst, an Italian industrialist of Swiss origin, who owned a precision tool manufacturing plant at Intra, near Lago Maggiore (formerly the Guller & Croff iron foundry). Züst experimented with prototypes of cars from around 1900 on and in Milan in 1905, he founded the Zust company for manufacturing cars and commercial vehicles. His first models were huge and expensive machines propelled by four-cylinder engines from 7432 cc (454cuin) to 11308 cc (690cuin). These were joined by a slightly smaller 5-litre (305cuin) model in 1908. A Zust 28/45 HP participated in the 1908 New York to Paris Race and finished third. Giustino Cattaneo (later of Isotta Fraschini) worked for him.

In 1906 Züst decided to also make smaller cars, so with his five sons he founded a new company known as Brixia-Zust in the city of Brescia. (Zust and Brixia-Zust are often confused). Due to financial problems, Brixia-Zust closed down in 1912; the Milan factory was sold and production of Zust cars concentrated in Brescia, where production continued until 1914. The last new models, the 15/25 HP or 2S 365 (2592 cc/158cuin) and the 25/35 or S305 (4712 cc/288cuin), appeared in 1913.

On October 1, 1917, the company was taken over by Officine Meccaniche of Milan, who continued to make the S305 until 1923 under their own name.

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