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Ghia 450 SS Convertible

The Ghia 450 SS Convertible.

Vehicle Overview

The Ghia 450 SS Convertible epitomizes the twilight of the custom coachbuilding era by the mid-1960s. As bespoke designed and hand-built cars faded from prominence, a few stalwart firms in Italy, including Ghia, persisted in showcasing their craftsmanship. Ghia had forged an unexpected partnership with Chrysler, a company known for its conservative lineup, under the influence of Virgil Exner, its chief stylist. This collaboration yielded numerous concept cars for Chrysler and even gave rise to luxury vehicles like the semi-factory Dual Ghias and Ghia-built Imperial limousines. In the early 1960s, Ghia captivated audiences at European auto shows with its Fiat 2300 chassis-based sports cars, designed by the visionary Giorgetto Giugiaro. The Ghia G230S debuted in 1964, sporting distinctive features that would later define the 450 SS, including its unique front end and flowing contours. It was during this time that Bert Sugarman, a Hollywood entrepreneur, encountered the G230S prototype in Turin and envisioned a roadster variant infused with robust American V8 power. Mr. Sugarman’s vision materialized through a collaboration with Ghia, where the Plymouth Barracuda Formula S served as the foundation for this Italian-American hybrid. The Ghia 450 SS wasn’t simply a rebodied Plymouth; it was meticulously crafted using traditional Italian coachwork methods and fitted with robust American mechanicals. Constructed entirely by hand from steel, each car bore a hefty price tag exceeding $13,000 upon its 1967 debut, exclusively available through a Hollywood dealership. Positioned as an automobile for the privileged elite, the Ghia 450 SS Convertible garnered limited production, with only 52 units finding buyers. Today, just over half of these original cars are believed to survive, underscoring its rarity and desirability among collectors. The Ghia 450 SS stands as a testament to the culmination of the coachbuilding tradition, blending Italian craftsmanship with American power in a striking expression of automotive artistry from a bygone era.

ghia 450 ss

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Technical Specifications

  • Body
  • Year
    1966
  • Make
    Ghia
  • Model
    450 SS Convertible
  • Coachbuilder
    Ghia
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  • Engine Type
    V8
  • Designer
    Giorgetto Giugiaro
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