The green Bradley GT II I showed you the other day showed excessive front overhang. Actually, that car was odd, because it was not a stock Bradley GT II, as the front end was longer and different, and the A pillar was fatter. maybe a Bradley GT II clone?
Well, here’s another green sports car coupe, shot by Ralf K. And its proportions couldn’t be more different. Unfortunately, the coupe version of this Intermeccanica Italia, especially in profile, does not do justice to the basic design, especially the Spyder version.
See what I mean? Sexy.
The Intermeccanica story is a rather convoluted one, like so many cottage-industry sports cars.
Founded in Turin, Italy in 1959 by Frank Reisner, the company initially built some tuning kits and a small Formula Junior racer. In 1962, his company got involved with the Apollo GT, the dream of a young Californian engineer, Milt Brown. It featured the new Buick aluminum 215 V8 engine (later the 300 cu.in. cast iron version), and was an ambitious attempt to compete with the Italian exotics. Intermeccanica built the bodies in Turin, and then shipped them to Apollo in Oakland, CA. for final assembly.
The Apollo was not a success, and a series of three subsequent owners failed to make it so under a variety of names.
Intermeccanica realized that the only hope lay in building the whole car (new restyled by Robert Cumberford) in Italy, using Ford running gear. Initially it was called Omega, then the Intermeccanica Italia, undoubtedly to play up on its origins. Some 500 of these were sold up until 1970.
Intermeccanica continued to be involved in other small-volume sports car project like the Indra, using Opel components and a Chevy 350. But when Opel got involved with Eric Bitter, and put pressure on its dealers to drop the Indra, that was the end of that.
Intermeccanica moved to the US in the 1970s, and became a kit-car builder, most notably for their Porsche Speedster model. And they’re still at it today.
ALL are beautiful cars, but if I could afford just one I think I would want an Apollo GT.
Wow, if that was my car I’d be seriously tempted to get the roof cut off while I was having it repainted.
A bum for every seat in this hobby though.
The black one is gorgeous, that’s as pretty as any Enzo era Ferrari as far as I’m concerned. The green one, weirdly, not so much, it looks like a half baked kit car, the roof reminds me of a Triumph TR7. The color is bad, and I think the camera is fish eyeing the midsection, making it look tall and ungainly.
I recognize this car though, an Italia was featured in the original Gone in 60 Seconds where it was stolen from a car wash.
Lyle Wagner’s car!
(“Hey man, got any uppers?”)
Wasn´t a Apollo GT the opponent of Herbie in the first movie?
Yup. It was called the “Thorndyke Special” in the film.
Intermeccanica currently operates out of Vancouver, BC, Canada. Unfortunately the company website doesn’t say when the move from California to BC happened, but the company is Canadian now.
Some of these shapes are credited to Scaglione as well, though I haven’t looked to deeply into it. His last gasp, really, after the sublime Alfa Stradale.
Paul,this is the first time (I think) that you haven’t told the full story. Jack Griffith,Mark Donohue, CAR and DRIVER ’64,or’65 magazine article. Great looking car,but not in green!
True. It’s a mighty complicated and lengthy story, though, and it was getting late. Would you like to tell it?
When Intermeccanica was still in Italy, it built the body for the Fitch Phoenix prototype. Only one was ever built. It was the brain child of John Fitch, the famous racing driver. It still exists and is now in private hands.
You can read about the connection between Intermeccanica and John Fitch, starting on page 3 of this newsletter:
I hope you like it!
Lovely Italo-American hybrid, even more obscure than the Isos and Monteverdis I covered recently. A full story (by someone who knows these well, ie. not me) would be awesome.