The 2006 Fisker Tramonto is 2000s coachbuilding at its most polarizing

Share

The coachbuilding tradition has birthed some rare and precious cars. (Check out this $995K 1937 Mercedes-Benz 540 K coupe conversion or this 1938 Bugatti Type 57 Cabriolet bodied by D’Ieteren and valued between $1.5M–$2.0M.) This 1957 Ferrari 250 GT, for its part is absolutely beautiful and wears a Pinin Farina body commissioned for Lilian, Princess of Réthy (think Belgium). Pinin Farina (later Pininfarina) was one of the few coachbuilders to survive and thrive into the postwar period. Manufacturers, by and large, began to design and construct their car bodies in-house, which meant the days of customers re-bodying their cars (like the 540 K above) slowly came to a crawl.

In the mid-2000s, however, designer Henrik Fisker entered one of his namesake cars into the coachbuilding tradition. The vehicle was the Tramonto, a rebodied Mercedes-Benz and the first project overseen by his own company, Fisker Coachbuild.

Wish to claim for yourself a relic of such early-21st century coachbuilding? If you feel so inclined in the next three days, you can bid on Bring a Trailer to own the very Tramonto owned by Mr. Fisker.

Below the Fisker-penned bodywork, the Tramonto is in truth a 2003–12 SL-Class (R230 generation) and is the second of 15 custom-built examples (a batch of 150 was originally planned). According to its production sequence, this Tramonto is designated as number 002.

As the seller mentions, what makes this hardtop convertible special is that it marks Fisker’s first design at the helm of his own company. You’d think the man responsible for the BMW Z8 and the Fisker Karma would create a vision of beauty, when left to his own devices, but the Tramonto is an unfortunate outlier. Aesthetically it’s more strange than elegant, wearing garish chrome wheels and a front splitter than shows a healthy dose of curb rash. Oh, and Fisker doodled on the sunvisor in 2013, doing his best Carroll Shelby impression.

2006 Fisker Tramonto
2006 Fisker Tramonto

Fisker steered far away from the original Mercedes-Benz design cues for this project, and there’s a good deal of 2010s V8 Vantage visible there. (Fisker designed both that 2005–17 model and, later, the DB9 for Aston Martin.) Take the grill, for instance. Did Fisker just double Aston’s classic outline, flip one upside down, and join them to make a “new” grill? Check out the cross-eyed, Aston-esque headlights and the vents tucked behind the front wheel wells.

Underneath that carbon-fiber and aluminum bodywork, we’re not entirely sure what this Tramonto has going on. The seller shows pictures of 002 titled as an SL600. However, he also mentions in the listing that 002 is one of two Tramontos “reportedly” to receive the SL65’s engine, and it isn’t clear if the SL65’s upgraded brakes and suspension are part of the package. There are rumors of a tuning house called Kleeman that would eke out higher output from the original, lower-spec SL600 motor—but whether 002 received this treatment is anyone’s guess. We don’t know what it weighs, and the seller hasn’t dyno’d it.

What we do know is that Mecum sold it back in 2013 for $77K, well under its original $100K–$175K estimate. That date matches the BaT seller’s date of acquisition, and also jives with his photo of Fisker signing the sunvisor; Mecum’s listing specifies that “Fisker will be on hand to sign it for the winning bidder.”

2006 Fisker Tramonto

What might the Tramonto bring on BaT? Hagerty valuation analyst James Hewitt has this to say: “Since this Tramonto sold for $77,000 seven years ago and you can get an SL65 AMG for around $30K nowadays, this sale will likely be somewhere in the middle of that. Fiskers aren’t pulling collector interest like Tesla Roadsters, but buyers will always pay more for the rare or unique.”

With three days to go, the bidding currently sits squarely between those two figures, at $47,500.

The Tramonto also comes with a watch, designed specifically for Fisker, the seller says, by Rosendahl of Copenhagen. That seal the deal for you? Are the Tramonto’s oddball credentials exactly why you can’t sleep at night without it slumbering in your garage? Let us know below.

You may also like

  • 1
  • /
  • 3
Share
Read next Up next: Morgan drove its all-new Plus Four 1000+ miles home to Malvern from the canceled Geneva show