An afternoon with Andrea Zagato

For those of you who knows your Italian classics, the name Zagato should be no stranger.  Founded in 1919 by Ugo Zagato, Zagato started its business dressing airplanes and sports cars with light weight bodies.  

Today, it is the only surviving independent coach builder in the world, most notable for its signature “double bubble” roof design. Its latest project is the stunning Aston Martin DB11 unveiled at Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este this year.

Zagato pioneered the technique of combining steel structures with aluminium bodies that significantly reduces weight without sacrificing structural integrity.  The same weight saving technique was latter implemented in the construction of race cars.

In 1920’s, Alfa Romeo was the first car manufacturer to commission Zagato to build race cars resulting in the birth of the legendary 6C 1750 Grand Sport. Zagato produced over 200 models and collaborated with many manufacturers including Abarth, AC, Alfa Romeo, Aston Martin, Bentley, Bugatti, Ferrari, Jaguar, Lancia, Lamborghini, Maserati and Rolls Royce.

Nowadays, Zagato is managed by Ugo’s grandson Andrea together with his wife Marella Rivolta, who comes from another automobile family behind Iso.  I am here today to see my 1965 Lancia Flaminia SuperSport Zagato on display.  It’s indeed a privilege to be amongst the very best and most important Zagato cars in the world, let alone sitting next to the very Iso Rivolta owned by the Rivolta family.

What’s more, I got the chance to go inside the restricted area where workers were finishing off the last of the limited production Maserati-powered Zagato Mostro.  And when I said limited production I really meant it – they are making a total of 9 cars only.  There are also 2 Ferraris undergoing transformation that’s so secret I cannot say what they are.

All I can say is – bellissimo!