Crimson Star's 1960 Fiat Abarth Zagato 750 GT
|It was 1963. I lived in Sacramento, CA. When I first saw this car, I didn't know what it was. Later that year, a friend and I found another one sitting in a dealer's lot. It looked like a cross between a Porsche and an Aston Martin Zagato.|
|My friend asked the salesman how much it cost.
"It's handmade, you know," he said, "all aluminum body, too, only weighs
1250 lbs." We waited. "The engine is in the back, a 747cc four-cylinder putting
out 47 hp." We waited. "A proven winner in SCCA Class H races all over the
US." We waited. "14," he said. Fourteen thousand dollars! You could buy a
brand new Ferrari V12 for that back in those days. "Fourteen hundred," he said,
noticing that we had both stopped breathing several minutes ago.
Neither of us had $1400, but I knew what I was going to buy the first time I did.
|In 1966, I saw this first car again. The owner was
just driving away from a supermarket. I followed her home, and helped her carry in the
groceries. (I used to be an Eagle Scout, you know.)
Several months later she sold me the car.
Note the "Double-Bubble" in the roof, needed for head clearence when you sat in the car. This was a "trademark" of Zagato-bodied racing cars of that era.
|I was at college in Los Angeles then, so I naturally
drove it down to TJ for a new tuck-'n-roll job. There was a local Abarth dealer/racer in
Glendale and his bodyshop took it down to bare aluminum before painting and polishing.
These photos do not do it justice. You may begin to appreciate how nice it really was, when I tell you that I sold it to a man in North Vancouver who already owned a Ferrari 275 GTB. He was keeping the Ferrari, but he wanted something that looked nicer and was more fun to drive!
© Crimson Star, last updated on Sunday, December 05, 2010 09:59 AM