It took two years to build this massive scale model.
If you can't afford the real thing, getting a scale model or a slot car is much cheaper. It seems this also rings true when it comes to car factories, as somebody recently paid $225,000 for a miniature but incredibly accurate replica of Fiat's Lingotto factory.
Lingotto is a special place, but it could never be used in today's health and safety obsessed world. In short, it has a race track on the roof, and you can still visit it today. Though you'll be disappointed to see the inside has been turned into a mall and a hotel. The track is still there, however. It's worth seeing if you're ever in Turin, and the Turin Motor Museum is just down the road.
But before we get back to the replica at hand, you're probably wondering why a factory has a track on the roof. Well, Lingotto was built on the outskirts of Turin, so it wasn't a lack of space. It was probably just the Italians being different and hella stylish. Not to mention, they could test in secret and no one could see the cars.
Slot Mods Raceways from Detroit, Michigan has built this recreation of the Lingotto factory and track. It took two years to complete, cost $225,000, and was built to be part of someone's personal collection.
While it's not exactly cheap, it costs a lot less than the real building, which is currently the central point of an all-new cultural hub referred to as Lingotto.
The scale model is incredibly intricate. You can look through specific windows and see the factory floor, design studio, and Giovanni Agnelli's office. Naturally, you can also race the classic Fiat 500's on top and recreate a less-than-desirable test run. The tiny Fiats were created using a 3D printer. They also appear to be painted in period-correct Fiat colors.
As for the original factory, construction was completed in the early 1920s, and it was the biggest car factory in the world. So why did Fiat finish it with the ultimate accessory on top, a personal racetrack?
Rumor has it that Fiat's boss wanted an early warning if a car's handling was poor. Nothing says unsatisfactory handling like a Fiat flying past your fifth-floor office window. Giovanni Agnelli would know about any potential flaws seconds after the test driver found out.
Fiat's assembly process ran from the bottom to the top. Each new floor consisted of a new assembly line, with a quick few laps around the track being the final step in the process.