Remember Ferrari Competitor Bizzarrini? It’s Coming Back

You don’t remember Ferrari competitor Bizzarrini? You should. Bizzarrinni was formed in the mid-1960s by a former Ferrari, Iso Rivolta, and Alfa Romeo engineer and race car driver Giotto Bizzarrini. It was a low-volume high-end manufacturer that produced the Europa, Strada, and mid-engine P538, as well as a number of one-off concepts. 

Pegasus Brands, a dealer network out of the UK, plans on using the Bizzarrini name

A 1976 Bizzarrini P538 is displayed during the London Concours at Honourable Artillery Company on August 20, 2020, in London, England | Getty

Now Pegasus Brands, a dealer network out of the UK, plans on using the Bizzarrini name, reintroducing the brand “while also engaging with a new generation of collectors and enthusiasts.” It will have offices in London, Geneva, Kuwait, Abu Dhabi, and Dubai according to Autocar. Former Aston Martin CEO Dr. Ulrich Bez will oversee the launch along with other ex-Aston Martin executives.

Besides being Aston Martin CEO from 2000-2013 he was head of design and development for Porsche through the successful 1990s. He also took a hand in increasing Daewoo’s push into global markets. Others at the helm include CEO Christopher Sheppard, Janette Green, the former chief marketing officer for Aston Martin. She’ll serve in this capacity at Bizzarrini. 

Bizzarrini was a Ferrari developer, designer, test driver, and chief engineer

Giotto Bizzarrini sits in the new Iso Grifo A3 Berlinetta, which he designed | Getty

Giotto Bizzarrini started with Alfa Romeo as both an engineer and a driver in 1953. By 1957 he moved over to Ferrari. He wore many hats. He was a developer, designer, test driver, and chief engineer. Cars under his watch include the Ferrari 250 TR, 250 GT SWB, and 250 GTO. 

In 1961 he walked away from Ferrari along with several other engineers and developers in what was known as the “great walkout.” Bizzarrini and the others started ATS building and designing race cars.  With his own company Societa Autostar he designed a number of chassis for Iso including the Iso Rivolta GT, Iso Grifo, and Grifo A3L. For Lamborghini, he designed the 3.5-liter V12 aluminum engine that would go on to power the Miura, Countach, and Murcielago. 

But by the end of the 1960s, in spite of some racing successes including runs at Sebring and LeMans in both 1965 and 1966, Bizzarrini stopped making cars. Later in 1969, he built the chassis for the seven AMX/3 sports cars American Motors was seriously considering producing. This was meant to compete with the likes of the Pantera. 

A number of chassis for AMX/3 cars survived to become race cars in the 1970s

Bizzarrini GT America | Getty

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A number of chassis for AMX/3 cars survived to become race cars in the 1970s. Some were fitted with Lamborghini V12 engines thus, achieving cars with both engine and chassis designed by Bizzarrini. Bizzarrini-designed one-offs have appeared here and there including at the 2005 Geneva auto show. The GT Strada 4.1 concept was meant to go into production by 2007. His Bizzarrini Veleno made its debut in 2012. 

Bizzarrini is still alive in his mid-90s but is not involved in the revival of his namesake. It is expected that he will see some of his earlier designs come to fruition in this latest venture.