The FIAT name is an acronym for Fabbrica Italiana Automobili Torino (Italian Car Factory of Turin), founded by a group of investors--Giovanni Agnelli among them--in 1899. The current Fiat logo has the letters F-I-A-T written with a silver line between each of them. The lines were added by the company's design chief when one day passing under the factory, he noticed the sky at the backdrop of the huge FIAT letters on the top of the building. The lines added are actually the spaces that he saw in the name over the building and decided to keep it.
FIAT was founded in Turin on July 12, 1899. The first plant, inaugurated in 1900 at Corso Dante, had 235 employees and produced 24 automobiles. The first automobile to bear the Fiat brand name was a model 4 HP.