1 of 56: 1970 Intermeccanica Italia Coupe

Designed by renowned Italian designer Franco Scaglione, the Intermeccanica Italia was built between 1966 and 1970. For the first three years of production it was only built as a Spyder, with a very limited number of coupes built during the final year of construction. This 1970 Italia Coupe is advertised for sale here on eBay. Located in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma, it comes with a clear title. Initial bidding on this example opened at $19,995 and at the time of writing it has reached $30,000.

The seller claims that this Coupe is 1 of only 56 ever built. While the exact number built will never be definitively known, a number of sources seem to agree on the total of 56. This one has been sitting in its current state since a restoration was commenced in 1985 by the previous owner. The current owner purchased the car after the previous owner was jailed for drug trafficking. The seller has always had the intention of completing the restoration but has never gotten to that point, so has decided to part with the car.

As you can see the body restoration has been commenced, but there is a lot of work remaining to complete the job. The seller purchased the car partially dismantled. He believes that all of the major parts are there to complete the car. While there are no shots of the underside of the car, what we can see from the shots of the engine bay seem to indicate that the chassis should be in good condition.

The interior is going to require some hard work to bring it back to its former glory. The leather on the seats and dash will need cleaning and conditioning, but it appears to be free of rips or tears. Looking through the photos seems to indicate that everything is present and in good condition, although the gauges in the instrument cluster may require some work as some of the lenses look to have become cloudy over time.

Thankfully the original drive-train is all present and accounted for. The Ford 351ci V8 for the Italia was not sourced directly from Ford, but was built and source through Homan and Moody. This was backed by a top loader transmission and a narrowed Ford 9″ rear end. In a car that weighed a mere 2,601lbs this resulted in very respectable performance. With the car having been sitting for more than three decades it would be a good idea to have the mechanical components checked before the car fires a shot in anger.

Determining a value on the Intermeccanica Italia is a difficult task. Even though there were significantly fewer of the Coupe version built than the Spyder, the Spyder seems to command a higher price. Having said that, with the Spyder now selling for an average of $150,000 that still makes this Coupe a potentially valuable car. Very few of the Coupes come onto the market, so this one definitely represents a rare opportunity.

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Comments

  1. Luke Fitzgerald

    Probably better than a shelby – looks like someone could sit in the damn thing

    9
    • Bruce

      Luke you are right they are very comfortable and one of the owners I knew of was 6′-4″ tall and he loved it. I would go the Marcos route and have an adjustable peddle cluster which is really nice. Look it up and maybe the Porsche 928 example of an instrument cluster that adjusts up and down along with adjustable seats for a car that would fit everybody.

      2
    • Concinnity

      Actually isn’t the design by the American, Robert Cumberford, who now comments on car design in Automobile magazine? And didn’t it start off as the Griffith before assembly was moved to Italy and the car was renamed the Italia? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intermeccanica
      Picture of ’66 Griffith GT.

      1
  2. SMS

    Love these. There is one around here that I see on the freeway from time to time. A convertible. Problem is that every time I see it and want to get a better look he is off and gone down the road. Such a good looking and good sounding car.

    7
  3. Vance

    Italians know how to build a good looking car, you may need an Italian mechanic to ride along with you but they are beautiful. This car reminds me of Raul Julia in Gumball Rally, when he rips of the rear view mirror. I know that he drove a Ferrari Daytona, but when I see good looking Italian cars I think of him doing that and it makes me laugh.

    7
    • Brian R

      That’s the beauty of having an American powertrain and driveline. Easy repairs with plenty of parts available at reasonable cost.

      4
  4. Stephen Sharp

    Looks like a Jensen……

  5. poseur Member

    such a well-proportioned and shapely shape.
    love the muscular fender swells.
    never knew they made hardtops.
    prefer the convertibles but this thing could be sweet after some years of work and parts chasing.

    3
  6. Martin Dix

    Whenever I hear about an Italia, I think of Lyle Waggoner’s Italia roadster from the original “Gone in 60 Seconds”.

    4
  7. Kevin Harper

    With all the cobra kit cars out there, why doesn’t someone replicate one of these. Don’t get me wrong the cobra is not a bad looking car but the Italia is gorgeous.
    From what I have heard the original chassis is crap so an upgrade there would be in order. You could probably take an existing cobra chassis and stretch it a bit.
    It would also probably limit the “is it real questions”.
    Just a thought

    4
    • PAW

      The IM chassis is welded to the body so replacing the chassis is a major undertaking. So cobra chassis (or any other) – I do not believe that ever to happen

      I am likely not far off, but I believe that I am the only one who has ever done a body off on IM. This means grinding off all welds of the chassis, removing most of the floor as the floor is built of sheet metal pieces welded in between sills and frame rails. Frame rail top sides double as parts of the floor.

      Why did I do it someone might ask – IMs rust. And they rust really badly from everywhere as no rust proofing was done at the time. My chassis had rusted so badly that it was more sensible to jig it, take body off & replace frame 100% and weld chassis back onto new frame.

      Do not assume that you would get the frame rail material off the shelf. Dimensions are bespoke. Our rail materials was done on order

      5
  8. Brian R

    That’s the beauty of having an American powertrain and driveline. Easy repairs with plenty of parts available at reasonable cost.

    1
  9. Paula Reisner

    From the description this is probably one of 33 Omega tagged Italians assembled in the US by Holman and Moody for Steve Wilder
    Paula Reisner

    6
  10. Bruce

    I have worked on two of these and the common thing about both is that they are even more stunning in real life than in the photos you can find here or on the internet in a GOOGLE search. They have comfortable seats and interiors, on the convertibles the tops work well and the car is pretty amazing except for two things. The brakes are horrible as on both they tend to lock up and there is almost no suspension travel in the rear end. Resulting in a ride far worse than any MG, Triumph or even Morgan I have ever ridden in or driven.

    I agree with Mr. Harper that one of the Cobra kit car companies should purchase one and adapt their frames and sell train loads of these. The performance is in the same range as the Cobra and with the new independent rear suspensions being used they can easily make up for all the problems these cars had. Do a proper fiberglass body and have all the glass and trim fabricated to match the original you would not only have a wonderful kit car but would give a supply of parts to the original cars still out there. A win, win for both I believe.

    There could be copyright issues but minor modifications of the body like a side duct alteration could put that at ease. The dash board certainly could use some serious work but the rest of the car is amazing. The trunk is useful, the cockpit good, the heaters in both were amazing. Only one had air-conditioning and it was excellent. Everything else would be easy to fabricate. You could even pull exterior moulds off of an original with relative ease.

    Of note both of the italia’s I worked on had nose damage because the brakes had locked up. One we had to rebuild the front hood and replace all the body sheet metal from the center of the front wheels forward. OUCH. that was time consuming and I would not wish to do that again. Strangely he hit a pole center on and the bumpers were fine. Go figure.

    Final note this design desperate needs a front spoiler and some aerodynamic work as the nose lifts at around 100 MPH. Enough that is scared both owners of the one I knew about. That should not be that serious an adjustment but most certainly should be considered.

    6
  11. Al

    In roadster version, one of the few cars as beautiful as a Ferrari. Wish a kit car builder would offer.

    3
  12. Mike

    Hmmm, Paula Reisner eh? I would imagine her to be a daughter of Franks and a sister of Henry’s?? THE INTERMECCANICA’S

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