The story of Jacques Saoutchik and his life spans eight decades, two world wars, a flight from Imperial Russia, incarceration, the birth of the automobile and its design, the Great Depression, the heyday of the Carrosserie D'Automobile Luxe in France and its subsequent annihilation - all set against a backdrop of glittering socialites, artists, demi-mondes and couturiers who populated the chic salons of Paris. It was an endless pursuit of elegance, a merry-go-round of the rich and famous - bl atantly ignoring the facts of life, which in the end found itself obliterated when the music stopped. It was a way of life that was trampled by the most fundamental political and social upheavals the worl d has ever seen. On top, Jacques Saoutchik lived a personal life which for decades involved maintaining two completely separate families, each knowing of the existence of the other.
The history of Touring is described in this new book by Giovanni Bianchi Anderloni, grandson of the founder using the Bianchi Anderloni family archives and with the support of the national archives, as well as vintage magazines.
For all lovers of vintage cars, Carrozzeria Touring is synonymous with elegance, sophistication and aerodynamic efficiency. The Superleggera Berlinetta, the Barchetta Ferrari, and the Disco Volante are just three examples that represent the achievements of the famous Milanese designer who was born in 1926. Other cars featured in the book are the Alfa Romeos - the 6C 1750 Flying Star, the 6C 2300 Mille Miglia, the 8C 2300 and 2900, the Sprint 1900 and 2000, and the 2600 Spider, the 3500 GT Maserati, the first Lamborghinis (350 GT and 400 GT), the Lancias, including the Lambda Flaminia, and many other major brands (Isotta Fraschini, Fiat, Bianchi, Ansaldo, OM, Mercedes). These are cars that have all won both in concours d'élégance and on the track. Also covered is the period of Carlo Felice Anderloni who led the Alfa Romeo Centro Stile.
Surely no form of contest has ever equalled the marriage of luxury and ostentation offered for many years by the great Concours d’Élégance. Elitist perhaps but their sheer magnificence seems just as fascinating in our present world as it did in the first half of the 20th Century. It should be remembered that these events allowed the most celebrated artists and artisans boundless freedom of expression. Everything was put into the melting-pot to achieve one end – the realisation of a dream.
The vital step for organisers of such events was to choose a venue famous for its air of leisurely hedonism, such as Longchamp, Deauville, Cannes, La Baule, Vichy, Nice or Enghien, where costly automobiles, their elegant silhouettes crafted by the great names of contemporary coachwork , could parade. To enhance the atmosphere, these exotic creations were presented by pretty ladies, mostly recruited from fashionable society, dressed in the latest fashion by the leading Parisian couturiers in an attempt to achieve the best possible symbiosis with the machines that they accompanied.
Without wishing to diminish the important role played in the spectacle by these actors, it was of course the aristocratic automobiles that the eager spectators had come to admire.
That Marcello Gandini is one of the greatest of automobile designers ever has never been disputed, and whether he is the greatest ever, only time and the directions automobile design takes, will tell. But there is no doubting Marcello Gandini’s immense impact on automobile design in the last four decades of the 20th century that still remains valid well into the 21st century. From the Lamborghini Miura to the Maserati Quattroporte IV, from the humble Innocenti Mini to the epic Cizeta V16T, Marcello Gandini has designed some of the most epochal of all automobiles. Iconic cars like the first-generation BMW 5 Series, the Audi 50/VW Polo, the Fiat X1/9, the Lamborghini Countach and the Diablo, the Lancia Stratos, the Renault Magnum super truck, and many others have all flowed from his stylistic pen.
The Lopresto Collection of Milanese architect and entrepreneur Corrado Lopresto represents a cross section of the history of automobiles, design, Italy, and its creativity. It is considered the most important collection in Italy and one of the most prestigious in the world.
Lopresto’s sensational collection of 100-plus cars is comprised of Italian classics – but not a single one of them is a Ferrari or Maserati. He favors Alfas and Lancias, Fiats, and Isotta Fraschinis. His collection isn’t open to the public, but you can get a good impression of it in 'Best In Show: Italian Masterpieces from the Lopresto Collection' published by Skira in 2015.
Lopresto's quintessential coachbuilding quotes:
“I’m willing to pay for a shape, for a design, for the person who’s behind it. I don’t want to pay [for] the prestige of a particular marque.”
“In the 1980s, when everyone was betting on the classics, I chose prototypes, those cars where talent and brilliance is expressed best.”
ISBN: 885722509, 204 pages
After 15 years, the Concours d‘ Elégance at the Royal Palace Het Loo has earned its place in the exclusive world of international top classic car events. From the very beginning, collectors worldwide found their way to this concours to show their special cars. The Concours d‘ Elégance Paleis Het Loo has the added unique feature of its location: a Dutch Royal Palace. In 2014 the eleventh edition of this event took place: a great occasion for a retrospective in the form of an exclusive book:
I am not a natural flatterer, I like to think that I "tell it like it is", politely I hope. So when I tell you that I am very impressed by the contents of your website, it is just not English politeness. I of course love the subject matter but you deal with it in an energetic and respectful manner. I am overwhelmed by the research that has gone into compiling the list of coachbuilders/bodybuilders for Europe and North America. I have never heard of the vast majority of them.
Congratulations on an excellent website.
- N. Maltby of Car Scene International
We use Coachbuild.com almost daily as our main reference source!
- Schloss Dyck Classic Days
We use Coachbuild.com all the time for references!
- Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance
We are very impressed by your website!
- Bicester Heritage UK