1966 Ghia 450 SS Convertible with hardtop  Chassis no. BS 4023

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Lot 331
1966 Ghia 450 SS Convertible with hardtop
Chassis no. BS 4023

US$ 80,000 - 100,000
£ 67,000 - 84,000
Amended
1966 Ghia 450 SS Convertible with hardtop
Chassis no. BS 4023
Carrozzeria Ghia was founded by Giacinto Ghia in Turin in 1919, soon establishing a reputation not just for luxury coachwork but also for bodying competition cars. Despite its founder's death in 1944 and wartime damage to the factory, Ghia resumed its place at the forefront of Italian coachbuilding after WW2, providing the training ground for many of Italy's rising-star designers: Michelotti, Boano, Frua and Savonuzzi all making a contribution to its continuing success. Ghia has collaborated with many of the world's leading car manufacturers, producing memorable models such as the Volkswagen Karmann Ghia, Lancia Aurelia B20 and FIAT 1500 and 2300 Coupés. One of few houses that has survived to this day, although in latter years this was because of Ford ownership, the 450 SS model dates from the days when the company was still independent and busy exhibiting ground breaking designs at the world's leading auto shows.

There can be no denying that the Ghia 450SS represents a statement of its era and blends what was then avant garde European styling by the famed Ghia design house and penned by Giorgetto Giugiaro. The design was actually first seen on a Fiat 2100 at the 1960 Turin Show, the fact that it became a reality was owing to the foresight of entrepreneur and Hollywood film producer Bert Sugarman, who caught sight of the car in a magazine and worked to convince Ghia to manufacture it. Sugarman's idea was to combine its styling with the performance engines of his own country, and to do so he proposed that instead of the FIAT, it be underpinned by a Plymouth Barracuda Formula S. By the time the car actually entered production, it was far more than a rebodied Barracuda and had its own chassis configuration, and a well constructed steel body, essentially providing a rigid semi-monocoque. Beneath the hood was his desired phenomenal Mopar performance, in this case provided by a 273 cid 'Commando' V8 breathing through a single Carter carburetor. Sadly, the car was not a huge success and it is understood that just 52 cars were built of those, the survival rate has been poor and just 26 are recorded as extant.

This ultra rare Ghia lived on the west coast for many years in the collection of a known collector of work by the coachbuilder. It is essentially a good, correct and original example which has been maintained and benefited from its favorable climate for the majority of its life.

Presented in handsome red paint scheme, with a well appointed black leather interior, with Eames style bucket seats, the car has the added benefit of the optional factory hard top. This accessory quite literally provides the car with two very different road guises, both equally haunch and sporting. Adding further to the driver qualities of the car is the fact that it has a manual transmission and to its aesthetics are its chrome wire wheels and extremely rare Ghia inscribed carpets.

A fabulous example of this intriguing story.

Saleroom notices

  • This is a 1967 model and the title reads as such
1966 Ghia 450 SS Convertible with hardtop  Chassis no. BS 4023
1966 Ghia 450 SS Convertible with hardtop  Chassis no. BS 4023
1966 Ghia 450 SS Convertible with hardtop  Chassis no. BS 4023
1966 Ghia 450 SS Convertible with hardtop  Chassis no. BS 4023
1966 Ghia 450 SS Convertible with hardtop  Chassis no. BS 4023
1966 Ghia 450 SS Convertible with hardtop  Chassis no. BS 4023
1966 Ghia 450 SS Convertible with hardtop  Chassis no. BS 4023
1966 Ghia 450 SS Convertible with hardtop  Chassis no. BS 4023
1966 Ghia 450 SS Convertible with hardtop  Chassis no. BS 4023
1966 Ghia 450 SS Convertible with hardtop  Chassis no. BS 4023
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