Made in Turin, Powered by Dearborn—Record Price for This Intermeccanica Italia

Bring a Trailer/911r

With the looks and performance of a contemporary Ferrari or Maserati combined with the soundtrack and maintenance of a Mustang, the Intermeccanica Italia has a certain appeal. Although not as prestigious as those more famous Italian thoroughbred classics, it is more affordable and easier to live with. Apparently, this really resonated with two bidders this week, because a 1968 Italia convertible sold for $232,500. Nobody has ever paid more for one of these Italo-American hybrids at auction.

Intermeccanica wasn’t the only company to combine Euro styling and sophistication with American muscle. In fact, the 1960s and ’70s were a golden age of sorts for this practice. Among the Italians were Iso, Bizzarrini, and DeTomaso. The Brits did it with the AC/Shelby Cobra, the Sunbeam Tiger, the Jensen Interceptor, the Gordon-Keeble, and various Bristols. Even the Swiss embraced American V-8 power with Peter Monteverdi’s boutique luxury performance cars. But Intermeccanica was an especially international affair, founded by a Hungarian-born Canadian immigrant and his Czech-born Canadian wife after they moved to Turin—Italy’s motor city—before relocating to California and then back to Canada, where the company still builds Porsche 356 replicas.

intermeccanica italia side
Bring a Trailer/911r

When Frank and Paula Reisner vacationed in Rome in the late 1950s, they fell in love with Italy and decided to move to Turin, where they set up Costruzione Automobili Intermeccanica. A tuning company at first, Intermeccanica sold performance kits for French Simcas, Peugeots, and Renaults, before constructing a Peugeot-powered Formula Junior and a small 500-cc bubble-shaped coupe called the IMP.

Then, American engineer Milt Brown contracted with Intermeccanica to build a new Buick-powered GT car called the Apollo GT. The Apollo was short-lived, but it was just the kind of car for which Intermeccanica would become famous.

In 1965, Long Island dealer Jack Griffith commissioned Intermeccanica to build him a car similar to the Apollo. Like the Apollo, that project was short-lived, but the Reisners wound up with the full rights to the car. At first they called it the Omega, but after GM acquired the rights to that name they had to stop. Next they built it as the Torino, and it debuted at the 1967 New York auto show. Once again they ran into naming issues, as Ford objected to the moniker, so finally they settled on Italia.

Intermeccanica Italia front
Bring a Trailer/911r

With its long and low hood, scooped headlights, pert tail, and a badge that looked half Ferrari prancing horse and half Lamborghini raging bull, the Italia had just the right appearance. Early ones used Ford’s 271-hp 289-cid V-8, but production soon switched to a 302 with 250 hp. At around $8000, the Italia was expensive, but it had a decent run, with about 400 coupes and convertibles built before production ended in 1972.

This one reportedly spent 37 years with a previous owner, and it received a restoration in the 2000s before strutting its stuff at the 2010 Meadow Brook Concours d’Elegance. The seller this week purchased it in 2016. Details like the AutoMeter gauges, Borla mufflers, Wilwood rear calipers, and aftermarket radio reveal the car’s mixed heritage, but it looks very clean. It sold for $181,500 in Amelia Island in 2015 and in Scottsdale the following year for $121,000.

That 2015 result was the most anyone had paid for an Intermeccanica Italia at public auction until 2022, when a 1969 convertible sold for $212,000. The condition #1 (concours) value in the Hagerty Price Guide has never been higher than $181,000, but now that this car has broken the record, it may just move the needle. With such a rare automobile, standout results like this can change our price guide values more dramatically than something more mainstream.


Check out the Hagerty Media homepage so you don’t miss a single story, or better yet, bookmark it. To get our best stories delivered right to your inbox, subscribe to our newsletters.

Click below for more about
Read next Up next: Brad Pitt’s F1 Flick Gets Title, Trailer, and Release Date
Your daily pit stop for automotive news.

Sign up to receive our Daily Driver newsletter

Subject to Hagerty's Privacy Policy and Terms of Conditions

Thanks for signing up.


    Cool looking car. An interesting car. But by the time you start to spend this much for a fake Ferrari you may just go and buy a real one.

    We had one of these sitting abandon at a donut shop years ago. I expect it needed more work than it was worth.

    My favorite knock off was the Apollo.

    The seller 911r is the king of shake and bake on BAT. Never seen the car in person- people are buying dry ice, 3m hand glaze and “curated” photos, not a car. Seems these cars (mostly g body 911) show up 13 months later on other sites at a 20-30% discount. Track the vin.

    Since we’re talking Euro/ American hybrids, and you mentioned the AC/ Shelby, this car reminds me a bit of the AC Frua 428 you featured not so long ago. Same basic formula and classic yesteryear Turin styling.

    For a early 1970’s Ferrari look alike..and the cost of restoring or upkeeping a Ferrari of the same Vintage as the Italia, would cost way more than the highest prices set on a 100 point Italia..and the fact that the drivetrain parts can be gotten at any auto parts store at a reasonable price…makes this a far superior vintage car for someone who wants the flair of a very expensive Italian classic without the Maintenace and expense of a Ferrari.

    A customer abandoned one of these at the shop I worked at until he finally decided he didn’t want to spend what it would take to get it safe/legal/running much less nice. In that era, there were fiberglass bodied projects everywhere so just being one from Italy didn’t make much difference. It looked cool and maybe worth two and a half or three grand if nearly perfect, and it was far from that. We had a euro Daytona on the lot I could have bought for ten…

    I’m curious as to why, when you talk about American Euro hybrids you usually neglect to mention Facel. Possibly the progenitor of them all.

    Another Itialian-American hybrid the Ghia SS comes to mind. Built with an interesting body and the ’66 Baracuda platform.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *