1971 Iso Grifo
Year of manufacture1971
Number of seats2
Chassis n° 120342
Engine n° TO306CZU 1539
- A very rare Grifo 7.4 Litri
- Same owner for 29 years
- Interior with patina, original engine
The assembly sheet of this car, a copy of which is attached to the file, confirms that it is indeed a Series II "7 Litri" with a ZF gearbox. It also mentions a "long" final drive ratio of 2.88: 1. It was originally in a blue shade with black upholstery and is one of the very rare "Can-Am" IR-9 versions, powered by a Chevrolet Corvette engine of 454 ci (7.4-liters) developing nearly 400bhp. Of a total of 413 Iso Grifos made, there are just about 20 Series II cars and this one is the only one of this type that was sold new in France. It was registered on July 21, 1971 in Strasbourg with the registration number 8488 QP 67, by a collector who wanted to replace his Ferrari Daytona. In July 1974, the car left for Angers and had a new registration number 1735 QV 49, before changing for 7809 PL 81 on April 4, 1979, as it once again moved cities, to Mazamet. On April 16, 1987 it was bought by an enthusiast from Cahors. He registered it 9040 HT 46 and kept it until today when, after 29 years of good and loyal service, he has decided to part with the car. The car was regularly maintained and a body and engine restoration was carried out in 2011, with the odometer then displaying 100,000 km. Since then, it has covered 7,000 km, and the last work done was on the brakes in 2016. Its engine is the original one, which is confirmed by the assembly sheet. A real enthusiast of this model, the owner, who also owned a Bizzarrini, even met Renzo Rivolta several times.
This Grand Touring car is particularly interesting because it was the ultimate evolution of the Iso Grifo. It was designed by Giotto Bizzarrini and Renzo Rivolta, with a remarkably balanced body design that combined aggressiveness with elegance, as designed by Bertone's designers Giorgetto Giugiaro and then updated by Marcello Gandini. As it was often the case in the 1960s and 1970s among craftsmen, Rivolta chose an American engine to power his car. This formula had advantages in terms of ease of use and reliability, compared with Italian mechanicals, which though were more 'noble' in origin, were also more delicate and fragile.
First powered by a Chevrolet 5.4-liter V8 when unveiled in 1965, the Grifo was also offered, from 1968, in a 7-liter version, and characterized by an air intake 'penthouse' bulge protruding from the hood. The facelifted Series II appeared in 1970, and was distinguished by the Gandini-designed semi-retractable headlamp lids. The Chevrolet 427 engine gave way to the new 454, the most powerful to ever equip a Grifo. The manufacturer claimed a top speed of 300 km/h, which, for its time, was indeed quite remarkable.
The model presented is therefore exceptional for several reasons: it is a rare and very powerful version of one of the most beautiful GTs of the 1970s. It is the only Grifo of this type sold new in France. It belonged to the same passionate owner for 29 years, and finally, it is in a good condition, with the black leather upholstery in a very well preserved state. These qualities should be of considerable interest to enthusiasts of exotic GTs.