This Barn Find ‘67 Iso Grifo is a Beauty, Rust Included
How does one compete with the likes of Ferrari, Alfa Romeo, Lamborghini, and Maserati—four monumental and proudly Italian sports and GT car manufacturers? This was the question one Renzo Rivolta asked himself as he pondered building his own grand tourer, riding the wave of success his Isetta “bubble car” had spawned. His answer? Leave the bodywork to Italian design guru Giorgio Giugiaro, hand off the chassis construction to ex-Ferrari engineer Giotto Bizzarrini, and source the engine power from, oh yes… America. This is the iconic result—the Iso Grifo, revered by many as one of the greatest Italian GT cars of all time, and a rare one at that. This particular example is a bit worse for wear, however. It will take to the RM Sotheby’s auction block in September where its barn find looks and seemingly original state will likely see it attract quite some attention. RELATED: See More of this '67 Iso Grifo Barn Find
Though the auction house hasn’t released any historical information about this particular ’67 GL Series I Grifo, a few bits can be said. Underneath the hood of this striking Italian beauty beats the 327 cubic inch heart of a Chevrolet Corvette V8, which Iso outfitted with higher compression heads in the late ‘60s, bringing the mill up to a heady 350 horsepower. These cars then came fitted with a mix of transmission options. This car appears to retain its four-speed manual gearbox, though the gear knob does look a bit worse for wear approaching age 50.
The rest of the Iso’s body reflects that weathered state, the tin worm has certainly made a snack of it over the past few decades. That said, these cars are achingly gorgeous to look at, even despite the patchwork rust spots that dot the car.
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Of interesting note, this is a right-hand drive car which makes it a bit more uncommon than the often seen left-hand drive models, which found their way to customers in France, Germany, Italy, and the US, among other locales. An estimated 400 were built in total. This Grifo’s mileage? The odometer reads just 68,870 miles.
Of course, there are faster (and likely rarer) Iso Grifos than this model—look no further than the screamin’ 7.0-liter Grifos which featured big block Chevrolet V8s—but just about any Grifo that has survived to present day is a hot-ticket collectible. By Hagerty Insurance’s estimations, pristine examples are worth in excess of $425,000.
Check back to see how much this lovely Grifo gavels for when it crosses the auction block in London on September 7th.
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Photo Credit: Tim Scott, RM Sotheby's