An Unofficial Forerunner Of Ferrari's Icona Series

An Unofficial Forerunner Of Ferrari's Icona Series

Bearing in mind the concept of the Ferrari Icona Series (reinterpreting timeless style with a modern aesthetic), the 2006 Ferrari 575 GTZ by Zagato would be a great successor to the Monza SP1 and SP2.

Instead of producing both the chassis and body, automakers – including Ferrari – often used external design houses to complement the engines and underbodies coming out of Maranello. Touring, Vignale and Zagato were among Ferrari’s early design partners. In the first few of years of Ferrari, Enzo was still on the hunt for “the Ferrari look”. He made good use of these coachbuilders to experiment with various interpretations of the Ferrari silhouette.

Clients and designers sat together creating a masterpiece, and as expected, they took enormous pride in the cars. As is often the case with design, it was an extension of personalities of all parties involved.

The first Ferrari by Zagato was the 166 MM Panoramica Berlinetta personally designed by Ugo Zagato, which resulted in the first Ferrari Coupé. After a few more years of experimenting and eventually finding the Ferrari look, the design house was approached by two of Ferrari’s best clients – Vladimiro Galluzi and Camillo Luglio – who asked Zagato to design two cars based on the 250 LWB chassis.

Ferrari 250 GT LWB Berlinetta Zagato ‘Tour De France’

Photo: Derek Cornelissen

The objective given by Galluzi and Luglio was to create a body that was lighter and more aerodynamic than any of the Zagato-bodied Ferraris. They went to work and the two cars they finished in April (s/n 0515GT) and June (s/n 0537GT) of 1956 would later enjoy some competition success. Two of the three Zagato-bodied TDFs that followed were also raced by their original owners. Unfortunately for Zagato, these were the only Ferrari cars they were honoured to design before Enzo passed away in 1989.

Modern Interpretation

Ferrari 575 GTZ

Looking back at the Prancing Horse’s history, there have been tons of stunningly designed Ferraris. One of them is the Ferrari 250 GT LWB Berlinetta by Zagato. As the story goes, Japanese car collector Yoshiyuki Hayashi wanted something different for his 575M Maranello, so he reached out to Zagato. As the 50th anniversary of the 250 GTZ was coming up, Ferrari agreed to let them do the project.

It had been many years since Zagato worked with Ferrari, and the company wanted its tribute to the 250 GTZ to be as good as possible. Just like its inspiration, the 575 GTZ has an all-aluminium body and two-tone paintwork, and it made its debut at the prestigious Villa D’Este Concorso d'Eleganza. Ferrari initially offered the series to the owners of the 250 GTZ cars, but not all of them were willing to pay the rumoured price of $1.5 million. Eventually, clients were found for the remaining cars and each unit was built to custom order featuring personalized exterior and interior details.

Ferrari 575 GTZ

With its bubble roof, engine intake and narrow rear lights, it’s very reminiscent of the 1956 Ferrari 250 GT LWB by Zagato, which was the intent of the design house. But the story of Zagato and Ferrari doesn’t end here. After the 575 GTZ, they went on to design a few more highly limited cars such as the 550 GTZ Barchetta and 599 GTZ Nibbio Zagato.

Written by Max Lammers.

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