Coachbuilt trivia: what car is it? – Solved!

August 2 – Update: mistery solved! See comments below.

1947 Stanguellini – Bertone 1100


August 2


The base car seems indeed a Fiat 1100S by Pininfarina, probably with a modified front grill, but the mistery remains partially unsolved: where that big Abarth badge and such air scoop come from? The two cars have a different rear glass: are they really the same car?

March 9


Surfing the web we stumbled across this portrait. This photo was taken around 1956/57 in the north-west of Italy. We couldn’t find out what car is this. Quite obviously it’s a Fiat based coachbuilt car, but some things really puzzle us: It seems a car built during the late fourties: some elements are typical of such period (see headlights and split windshield), but the front grille comes from a Fiat 1100-103 TV (1953-up). It also features an Abarth badge on the air scoop. Many thanks to whoever can help us to solve this mistery.

12 thoughts on “Coachbuilt trivia: what car is it? – Solved!

  1. I think the Fiat 1500 would be a much larger car. The Fiat-based Stanguellini Bertone is my guess, too, if that’s the car you meant James Peacock.
    Here’s my theory: the front end was crashed. The original front of that car is the work of some very skilled metal workers – quite distinctive – therefore difficult or expensive to repair. Look at this green one . A clever body shop grafted on an 1100TV grill and a pair of those glass Carello headlamps.

    Compared to the Pf 1100S, the Bertone has a more crowned shape to the bonnet (giving that neat scoop at the leading edge), a smaller back window, sliding side windows (look carefully at the passenger side), a small riser at the base of the side windows (Pf side windows go right down to the belt line), a crease in the roof that matches the windshield split.

    The Abarth sticker? I’ve got one on my tool box. It could be just decoration – but I wonder what IS under the hood!


  2. You know what? Your theory sounds good. As the car was probably crashed on the front, it was fixed removing the Bertone grill and replacing it with a “modern” 1100-103 TV grill. The curved hood had been cut and the resulting hole was filled with a grill so becoming an air scoop. This, along with other elements like the sliding side windows and the small rear window identify this car as a Fiat based Stanguellini-Bertone 1100. Must say that whoever did such work was skilled, really skilled. Mistery solved. Thank you for your analisys, thanks to James P. and to everyone who gave his contribution.


  3. Hey Classicvirus;
    So nice to see that gorgeous Stanguellini Fiat 1100 today. It made me think back to the Coachbuilt Trivia car again. Have a look here:

    This one was crashed at the ’53 Targa Florio – actually the morning before the start. Driver Agostino Bignami not only took himself out of the race, but Bonetto’s Lancia D20, too. Perhaps this Stanguellini Fiat was the basis for the Trivia car.


  4. Watching it from a later perspective, that was an obscure prediction as Bonetto will die few months later in consequence of a crash during the Carrera Panamericana, while driving a Lancia D24.
    Jumping back to the car, yours it’s a suggestive hypothesis: unfortunately, without knowing the trivia car plate, we will never know it…


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