Intermeccanica Italia convertible
Please contact sales (at) mcgrathitalian (dot) co (dot) uk
The Intermeccanica company was formed in Turin by Hungarian-born Canadian Frank Reisner in the late 1950s and by 1967 had made a number of different cars using a combination of American running gear and Italian built bodies.
The latest model, a culmination of all of their experience with cars like the Griffith and Omega, was to be called Torino, but Ford, who supplied their engines, not surprisingly complained at the use of the name and so at the last minute it was changed and the Intermeccanica Italia was born.
Available as a coupe or convertible, the Italia used a hand-crafted steel body drawn by Franco Scaglione and made by local artisans in the classic method but mounted on a steel box section chassis designed by Intermeccanica. The engine was a 351 cubic inch Ford V8 developing 325bhp and allied to a 4-speed manual Ford gearbox with a Hurst floor shifter. Suspension, brakes and live axle were also all Ford parts. The model was available until 1973, when it was replaced by the Indra.
This particular Italia convertible was manufactured in 1970 and is one of approximately 200 cars built. It was specified with optional Ehrenreich suspension, a 3.00:1 axle ratio, air conditioning, electric windows and black leather interior (vinyl was standard) and was sold new in January that year to a Mr Bende from New Jersey USA.
Little is known of its early history but it was at some time exported to Sweden and registered there in 1999 to Bengt Christopherson. By this time the original colour of Verde Gemma had been changed to red and the white vinyl hood changed to a mohair one in black. After another two Swedish owners, it was bought by the current owner in 2011 during a trip to Sweden and driven back to the UK.
Forming part of a private collection, the car has been fettled and detailed but not restored. It retains good patina and is surprisingly original. It has been officially imported into the UK and registered. However, a lack of use means that the car is now being offered for sale.
The car comes with a certificate of authenticity from the current Intermeccanica company, which is signed by Frank Reisner’s widow Paula and UK V5C.
Extremely rare in Europe and possibly unique right now in the UK, this is a very rare opportunity.