Fabrique-Nationale FN 1300S “The Salt Lake City car” from Malaga Museum, Spain.

Made in Belgium in 1927, V4, 11 hp, 1.300 cc.

The Belgian Fabrique Nationale d’Armes de Guerre (National Manufacturer of War Weapons) company, also sometimes known as Fabrique Nationale de Herstal (National Manufacturer at Herstal), but better known simply as “FN” or “Fabrique Nationale” was founded at Herstal on the edge of Liège in 1889. As well as weapons, it was for many years a manufacturer of motorbikes and of automobiles.

This summary concerns the automobiles. FN was active as an auto-manufacturer from 1899 till the later 1930s which makes it Belgium’s longest-lived make of car.

The first FN automobile was built in 1900. It was called a “Spider” but to modern eyes more closely resembles a horseless carriage. It featured a two cylinder motor which drove the rear wheels using a chain linkage. A four cylinder 4,000 cc engined car followed in 1904, with a claimed power output of 14 PS (10 kW).

This car already included an angled steering column. The next year saw the arrival of the more luxurious FN Typ 30-40. Customers included members of the Belgian Royal family and the Shah of Persia.

Th FN 6900 was developed from the Typ 30-40, powered by an engine built under license from Rochet-Schneider. In the engine car the cylinders were cast in pairs. Power transferred to the rear axle via a disc clutch and a steel drive-shaft. The car was designed for comfort, with suspension that used both laterally and longitudinally mounted leaf springs.

With the FN Typ 2000, the car also gained flexible engine mountings. This was followed by the Typ 2700 which, for the first time, was powered by engines designed and built by FN themselves.

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