1600 hp monster diesel firing up at Rétromobile 2012
By Ben Coxworth
February 2, 2012
Hey, you like really big engines? Well, here's one that's not going to fit under the hood of your F-150. This 30-ton (27-tonne) Type 9 V.O.S. engine is one of just three built by the French company Duvant in 1962. It's over 18 feet (5.5 meters) long, 11 feet (3.4 m) tall, and gulps down 350 liters (92.5 US gallons) of diesel fuel per hour. With its four valves per cylinder and turbocompressor, it is capable of producing 1600 horsepower. Best of all, should you happen to be in Paris this week, you can see the thing running.
This particular Type 9 spent 50 years in the basement of the Auteuil Race Course, in Paris. There, it drove a giant alternator, that could power the entire facility in the event of a power outage.
In 1990, it was used for the last time. By 2000, the race course owners were looking for a new home for the engine, so the Association des Amoureux des Vieux Moteurs (Vintage Engines Appreciation Society) took it off their hands. After taking it apart, winching it out of the basement by crane, then transporting it and reassembling it, members of the Society were finally able to start it up again in 2010.
Now, it's on display at the Rétromobile 2012 show in Paris, running February 1st to 5th.
Among the other vintage oddities on display will be a 1913 Audi Type C with airplane fabric covered coachwork, an incomplete 1920s GERIN aerodynamic concept vehicle, and two examples of early amphibious cars.