Macchina, Car, Auto, WHY ISO RIVOLTA? PROJECT PRESENTATION

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1 PROJECT PRESENTATION WHY ISO RIVOLTA? Macchina, Car, Auto, Carro, машина, Voiture... I know that word better then every other word. Early in my childhood my passion for cars began to live. Cars were exiting to me and thats why I also started drawing cars. Over the years I basically taught myself how to draw them. I read books like How to draw by Scott Robertson and kept on improving over the years. Then I had to find a Topic for my thesis at university and I found an article in a magazine (Autobild) and they presented three italian sports cars from the sixties. I definitely knew the Lamborghini Miura and the Ferrari but I never heard of the third one. It was the Iso Grifo. But did I never heard of the brand and why do they compare it to Ferrari and Lamborghini? I began to research about the car and the brand Iso Rivolta and soon found out that they don t exist anymore. But I asked myself why? For me the Iso was the most beautiful of these three. I couldn t understand why the brand don t exist anymore. Thats where it all started. I came up with the Idea to reproduce the car and to resurect the brand. A car this beautiful should not be forgotten. Photo by: Roman Raetzke found at

2 ISORIVOLTA The History BEGINNINGS How the trademark started Renzo Rivolta founded the company in 1939 under the name of Isothermos as a producer of refrigerators, radiators and water-heaters. In 1941, in the middle of the war, it moved from near Genoa to Bresso, on the edge of Milan, where its transformation started. In 1946, as part of the postwar rush towards motorization, it entered the automotive sector with the production of the Iso Scooter and the Iso Moto, and took the name of ISO spa. The production of the first scooters went well and the company began to extend its range. Iso also started to produce three-wheeled vans, and small trucks. Iso Products became famous for their sturdiness, reliability and sober design.

3 THE ISETTA AND THE GT T he first turning-point in the company s history came in 1953 when the Isetta was presnted at the Turin Motor Show. This completely original small car won Iso immediate fame, and thanks to its size (lenght 2.27 m, width 1,37 m) it was universally recognized as the very first town car. It soon became a huge commercial success and until 1962 it was produced under licence from Iso in many countries. BMW alone sold of them. One famous Isetta record, noted by the newspapers of the period, was 5 started, 5 finished. These were the cars which took part in the Mille Miglia race in 1954 and Legends are born arrived at the finishing line with an average of about 82 km/h. At this point Iso had the organization and the technical potential to make a leap forward in terms of quality. The market was then feeling a need for a car which combined the sparkle, performance and style of a GT with the reliability comfort and easy driving which cars of that type did not offer at the time. the response to this demand was the production, in 1962, of the Iso Rivolta GT coupé 2+2. The exceptional chassis, excellent road-holding and typically italian design were the secret of this car s success. It s bodywork was developed with the aid of Rivolta and Bertone. The drawings were by the very young Giorgetto Giugiaro then head stylist at Bertone. The engine came from the General Motors Corvette with high power but low rpm and was specially modified to suit European driving habits. From then on the name Iso Rivolta was to identify all the company s GT cars during the 60s.

4 THE GRIFO High level performance in the sixties The same strategy, which was to be the basic feature of Iso Rivolta cars from now on, led to the production in 1963 of the Grifo, launched at the Turin Motor Show the same year in two models, the Grifo A3-L (De Luxe) and the Grifo A3-C (Competition), designed for endurance races. The latter car was to take part in the Le Mans race two years running, coming first in its class both times, as well as fourteenth overall in 1964 and ninth overall in After suitable modifications for production, the Grifo A3-L was put onto the market in 1965 with the name of Grifo GL (De Luxe). The world s press dedicated a great deal of space to it, and althrough its cost made it the world s most expensive GT it was very successfully with clients with a taste for fast driving and top performance.

5 THE BEGINNING OF THE END The company turns into a legend In 1966 the sudden death of Renzo Rivolta meant that his son Piero, who had been working with the firm for some time, took controll. In these years, activity became more intensive: -1968: Launch in Geneva of the Grifo-7 litres also with a Corvette engine and 425 HP : The Iso Rivolta GT went out of Production and was replaced by the new 2+2 Coupé called Lele and was presented at the New York Motor Show : Iso equipped its factory for the complete construction of bodywork to improve its control over quality. It was the first Italian GT car builder to take this step : The Grifo model underwent restyling by the pencil of Marcello Gandini and continued with 5 litres, 7 litres and Targa models : The factory movedfrom Bresso to Varedo -1972: Thanks to the position the company had now achieved on the market, in cooperation with Frank Williams and sponsorship from Philip Morris the formula One Iso Marlboro team was established. Then the years started when all GT manufacturers were forced to look for financial alliances; the market situation was becoming increasingly critical, due above to the oil crisis. In 1973 Iso spa signed an agreement transfering shares in the company to Pena Trading Co., an Italo-American holding company. The difference in strategy and philosophy with the new partners active in management was immediately noticeable. Piero Rivolta left the company to be followed shortly by all the most important personalities. The new financial group was not able to continue running the company, which was closed down in December Today the Iso cars ramain legendary and stand for Italian design and high performance. The Iso Grifo is a sleeping legend waiting for its resurection.

6 THE RE DE SIGN

7 These drawings are mady by copic markers and are based on perspective line-drawings. The logos are redesigned and computer animated.

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