This 1972 Intermeccanica Italia Spyder is another great
Anglo-Italian supercar, combining old world craftsmanship with
proven American mechanicals, but its story is even more interesting
than most. Built by an American engineer who moved to Torino,
Italy, the Italia was a pure vision of performance distilled down
to its core. With a bespoke body, gorgeous Italian leather
interior, and only 400 examples having been built, it's a tier-one
collectable that's still an absolute thrill to drive.
The Spyder's body was completely hand-made from steel and draped over a tubular frame. It has the characteristic long nose/short deck look that was in fashion at the time, looking a bit like a Ferrari from some angles, like a Corvette from others, and maybe even a little AC Frua thrown in. Nevertheless, it's got a look that's unique and there isn't a bad line anywhere on the car. Graceful curves, the pointed snout with covered headlights, and just enough ornamentation to make it look expensive all add up to a car that delivers exotic looks without the exotic hassles. This one was beautifully restored a few years ago and thanks to a recent professional buff, the silver paint simply glows. Panel gaps are quite good for a hand-built car and it shows well no matter where you look. The only possible demerit might be a small mark on the hood, but it's so subtle that we can't even get a decent photo of it. The chrome bumperettes were also restored, the headlight covers are crystal clear, and the detailing is simply exquisite everywhere you look.
The striking black and red leather interior is certainly up to the standards you'd expect from a low-slung Italian sports car. Nicely contoured bucket seats flank a matching center console, and the driving position is typically Italian with the long arm/short leg feel. Of note, the gauges are familiar Jaeger pieces that you'd find in a Jaguar E-Type, so they look suitably purposeful. The 4-speed shifter should feel familiar to anyone who has driven a vintage Mustang, and over the years, this Italia has been upgraded with modern conveniences like power windows and a newer AM/FM stereo radio with Pioneer speakers behind the seats. Peel back the black boot and you'll find a folding canvas top that does a decent job of keeping out the elements, and there's even a reasonably-sized trunk with full-sized spare and jack assembly.
It's familiar under the hood, which is what makes this car so intriguing. That's a Ford 351 cubic inch V8 with a 4-barrel carburetor and all the proven reliability that comes with it. How cool is it to be able to take a wrench to your exotic sports car without a PhD. in Italian? There's a lot of recent work under the hood, including an upgraded alternator, master cylinder, and power booster, as well as a fresh tune up with plugs, wires, and other parts. It starts with a sound very much like your vintage Mustang and settles into a rumbling V8 idle that seems a bit out of character for the delicately sculpted bodywork. The Toploader 4-speed manual gearbox is still a joy to run through the gears and the rear end is a familiar 9-inch Ford. 4-wheel disc brakes are a welcome sight in a car with this much performance on tap and the handling is pretty impressive with coil-overs all around. Recent 16-inch Minilite-style wheels have been fitted, and they're exactly the right choice, which also allows fatter 205/60/16 performance radials.
This is an awesome opportunity to own a rare Italian sports car that resonates with American audiences. Everyone will have questions when they see it and nobody will enjoy it more than the driver. Call today!