The A3/C Iso Grifo Stradale was such a trend-setting design that it directly inspired the Lamborghini Miura. As one of the lowest front-engine supercars ever built, the A3/C version here was the upgraded Corsa specification with very-rare riveted bodywork. This Stradale variant of the Corsa was the road-legal variant — but still benefitted from all the racing tech of the era to make it fast, stable and reliable at high speeds.
4 February 2015
1965 Iso Grifo A3/C Stradale
To be auctioned on Wednesday, February 4, 2015
€1.000.000 – €1.500.000
- Chassis no. B 0216
350+ hp, 5,359 cc OHV Chevrolet Corvette V-8 engine, four-speed manual transmission, independent front suspension via wishbones, coil springs, telescopic shocks, and an anti-roll bar, de Dion tube, coil-spring, hydraulic shocks, longitudinal struts, and an anti-roll bar rear suspension, and four-wheel disc brakes. Wheelbase: 2,446 mm
• Early rivet-body example
• Recently restored by a marque specialist
• Dubbed the “Green Apple”
Giotto Bizzarrini was most famously known as the Ferrari engineer responsible for the design and racing success of the fabled GTO. After leaving the factory, Bizzarrini joined one of his most enduring clients, and the one with which he has been most closely associated, Milanese industrialist Renzo Rivolta, of Isothermos and Isetta fame. Rivolta was a keen auto enthusiast who wanted to build a genuinely reliable GT car, and Bizzarrini worked closely with Iso’s chief technician, Pierluigi Raggi, in developing an extremely sophisticated platform-type chassis for the 2+2 Iso Rivolta GT. To solve the reliability issues that Renzo had encountered with his personal GT cars, Isos used a Chevrolet Corvette engine and transmission. After much development work, the Iso Rivolta GT debuted to rave reviews at the 1962 Turin Show.
Next came the landmark model that would serve as the basis for Bizzarrini’s own car: the Iso Grifo. It was a spectacular two-seat GT that was based on a shortened Rivolta chassis, and two variants of it were shown at the model’s debut at the 1963 Turin Auto Show. The Grifo A3/L (“L” for Lusso, or luxury) was on the Bertone stand, whilst the other, the A3/C (“C” for Corsa, or competition) debuted on the Iso stand; the latter car was built by Bizzarrini in his Autostar Works in Livorno. Both Grifos had Giugiaro-designed coachwork, and they featured a stunning combination of Italian styling, a race-inspired chassis, and reliable Chevrolet Corvette V-8 power.
Tom Burkart is the founder and managing editor of Car-Revs-Daily.com, an innovative and rapidly-expanding automotive news magazine.
He holds a Journalism JBA degree from the University of Wisconsin – Madison. Tom currently resides in Charleston, South Carolina with his two amazing dogs, Drake and Tank.
Mr. Burkart is available for all questions and concerns by email Tom(at)car-revs-daily.com.