by: Editor , 08-03-2018


Every petrolhead had the seeds sown early. The awe at seeing caddish Uncle Henry pull into the drive in his new Lancia Beta with its outrageously foreign lines, velour interior and green tinted glass. Perhaps a fleeting glimpse of a real 911 Turbo heading the other way on the autobahn or the headboy's father at exeat in his Jensen Interceptor FF, the ultimate Top Trumps spot. For most of a certain age growing up in '70s and 80's Britain though, Matchbox were seminal. A distinct memory of receiving not one but two Lamborghini Marzal Matchbox cars at the same birthday party cemented this petrolhead's love of all things Italian automotive. More than anything because owning two of the same model meant one could be played with carefree in the knowledge that when the axles eventually bent, which they all did with Matchbox, there was still the second one to take its place. So imagine my delight to find the original Marcello Gandini  concept Marzal at the 2018 Geneva Motor Show. Maybe I'm biased but it still felt like the most exciting machine there. The Marzal always remained a one-off exercise as a precursor to the 4 seater Espada but unlike many show cars, was a fully functioning machine famously driven by Princess Grace at the opening parade for the 1967 Monaco Grand Prix. Albeit with six cylinder engine as opposed to the then current Lambourghini V12 adopted by the Espada. This gullwing-doored machine has a trully timeless space-age supercar feel to it. Its curious how well some designs age and difficult to pinpoint why. Often tricky for the novice to date them accurately, the Marzal is a case in point. After languishing in the Bertone Design Study Museum, this all silver masterpiece sold at the Villa d'Este classic car auctions in 2011 for 1,350,000 Euros. Unobtainium to be sure, and I wonder how many other visitors left with the nagging feeling that the car they should really be driving is an Espada. This is only the third time that the Marzal has been displayed in public since its 1967 appearance and for us was the undoubted highlite of the 2018 Geneva Motor Show. Well worth a look....VrooomVrooom.



Category: News

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