Founded in 1899, Fiat built its first
aircraft engine in 1908 and formed SIA (Societa Italiana Aviazione) to
produce aircraft in 1914. By the end of World War I, Fiat had developed
the A 14, the world's most powerful engine in production and merged SIA
into the parent firm.
During the 1920s, large, powerful engines remained Fiat's forte. The AS 6
of 1931 was comprised of two V-12s mounted in tandem driving a
contra-rotating propeller. Fiat also built successful aircraft during the
1920s and 30s including the CR.32 bi-plane fighter.
Except for a license built Daimler-Benz DB605, Fiat' engine division
focused on radial engines during World War II. After the war, Fiat entered
the jet age by building U.S. and British aircraft and engines under
license as well as light aircraft of their own design.
In 1969, Fiat's aircraft division joined IRI-Finmeccanica to form
Aeritalia (later Alenia). Fiat's engine division is now FiatAvio.