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One of three: The Zagato Hillman Zimp

Whoever drove the Zagato Hillman Zimp, remains impressed for the comfortable ride, thanks to its driving position and the bright interior. The unmistakable roar of the the 875 cc all-alloy Coventry Climax FWMA – based engine, combined with the aluminum body makes this car surprisingly fast, but because its very light, it suffers from aerodynamic lift at 60 mph. In addition of that a direct steering and a well designed chassis makes this car a real Zagato.

The Hillman Zimp was born when Zagato saw the possibility for an aluminium-body based on Tootes group’s impressive new Hillman Imp. Afterwards, the idea of a Mini-based 1961 Zagato GT was born which was received positively by the Rootes Group because of the possibility to sprinkle themselves with some much-needed Italian Glamour.

Photo courtesy of Bring a Trailer

Two more cars were created, taking each up to 9 month to be built: A white Deluxe CUD 180B, and a red Deluxe CUD 181B. Both were ready for the 1964 Earls Court Motor Show. So in total 3 speciments were built, 2 of which were commissioned by the same owner.

Thanks to its light weight, the Zagato Zimp could reach up to 87 mph, but it never went into series production. In that years the company was facing financial difficulties, but in the end Chrysler came into the scene and took an initial 50% stake in Rootes. Although the american company didn’t like the Zimp and sadly cancelled the project.

The Zimp was a very special car: when you walk around it, many similarities with other Zagato creation can be found. Designed by Ercole Spada, it is in fact very handsome: there is a fascinatingly chunky theme going on and its profile has an almost push-me-pull-you symmetric due to the droop-snoot and the droop-tail. Its shapes are unique, unmistakably Zagato. It have could been a stylish and economic alternative to the dime-a-dozen Mini.

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Celebrating 115 years of Carrozzeria Garavini, the brand sees its rediscovery and relaunch in the world of cars, design and elegance.

At Garavini, craftsmanship, manufacture and uniqueness come together to create works of art on wheels that go beyond the concept of a simple means of transport to become symbols of passion and refinement.

115 years after its foundation, the company has decided to start again with the Alfa Romeo 4C, in the 10th anniversary year of the model’s presentation, in collaboration with the IAAD in Turin. This partnership between the historic brand and the design institute represents an opportunity to create a high-end sports car that combines outstanding Italian aesthetics with the best technologies.

Poltu Quatu immediately turned out to be the ideal location for the premiere of the project, thanks to the famous Concours d’Elegance which, as the perfect combination of worldliness, elegance and the joy of living the dolce vita, allows the meeting from all over the world of those enthusiasts who, more than anyone else, can appreciate the value and style of a vision such as Garavini’s.

The project takes its inspiration from the 1930s Alfa Romeo 6C 1750 by Garavini, the star of the Italian Dolce Vita and the birth of the classic car movement in Italy. The Garavini Perenne represents an extraordinary sports car that combines the Italian tradition of elegance and style with innovation and high quality craftsmanship. Garavini’s tribute to the model, the 4C, which, with its debut 10 years ago, decreed the real relaunch of Alfa Romeo, is no coincidence: symbolic value, as happens in all valuable initiatives, has a decisive weight in the conception and realisation of unique products.

The soul of the project is Luca Babbini, a young entrepreneur with experience in research and development for various industries, in particular the automotive industry. Babbini’s path, which started at IAAD and has been refined through subsequent collaborations, has always been linked to a passion for luxury, not so much as a material passion, but derived from the emotion that an object or an experience conveys.

“When I crossed Garavini’s path,” explains Luca Babbini, Garavini Design Director, “with family origins and values that can be traced back to mine, I thought it was a sign: the awareness of this affinity has allowed us to give life to a new chapter, a reality in which passion for craftsmanship, luxury and family heritage come together. The Garavini Perenne will be an opportunity to enhance the Turin area but in an international key, thanks to the freshness and desire to do that only a young team, such as that of Garavini and that of the IAAD master’s degree course in Transportation Design, can guarantee.”

On 8 July on the occasion of the Poltu Quatu Classic, a preview of the concept on which the students of the IAAD master’s course in Transportation Design are working, reasoning and declining the Garavini values of elegance and attention to detail, aimed at creating a modern classic with a first series of 15 examples, which aspires to become a timeless model, a source of inspiration for the present and the future. The lines are classic, inspired by a sporty use that smells of fresh air and speed. Driving pleasure is at the heart of the design with a set-up dedicated to usability on the road as well as on the track.

Again Luca Babbini: ‘The valorisation of young people is a key aspect of the project: it always seems, in the common narrative, that unreachable challenges and moments of continuous crisis await us, but the future is full of opportunities and style and beauty are not a closed chapter. The creation of new classics is the true ambition of a project, which looks to the future aware of its past but with the confidence that it can still make a difference. The Turin area, then, is rich in excellent craft realities with which to create synergies and develop a true pole of high craftsmanship. There is nothing to stop us from looking beyond the automotive field and broadening the declination of our values with incursions into other sectors… in short, there is a lot to build on, and the Garavini lifestyle begins today with Garavini Perenne.

The result of this partnership is a high-end compact sports car with a sculptural aesthetic design. Garavini is committed to satisfying a discerning international audience that appreciates the art of automotive design and Italian craftsmanship. The ability to excite both long-time enthusiasts and new customers is a challenge Garavini sets itself, aiming to create a fascinating and successful future for the brand.

The Garavini Perenne will be released in 2025.