Bentley GTZ Zagato Unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show  

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In times where mass-production cars are considered to be the only alternative to future of the automobile, Italian carrozieri keep teaching us all a little more on elegance and style. Although not all lessons are worth paying attention to, such as the family struggle that may kill Bertone, there are some that are worth waiting for. This is the case with Zagato’s last creation, the Bentley GTZ .

Based on the Bentley Continental GT Speed, the GTZ will very likely be produced in limited series, although neither Zagato nor Bentley have disclosed the details. In fact, this limited-production run can only be supposed by one of the last sentences in the press release below, which mentions that the car’s attributes will make it be a “special limited-production model”. So be it, and be it quick!

As Zagato usually does it, changes are subtle and, at the same time, deeply strong. Just check out the GTZ front fascia, which reminds the Bugatti Veyron’s. It may not be well known to the public, but Bugatti dealers are usually associated with Bentley because the British automaker is a “higher volume” manufacturer, according to what a Bugatti representative has once told us. Far from inappropriate, the new grille has its reasons.

Apart from the front end, the rear is really what makes this special Bentley deserve the Z in the end of its name. It begins with the typically Zagato roof top, which seems to reserve a space for the driver and another one to the passenger, with a little depression that suggests both “territories” inside the car. The taillights are really gorgeous and still define a Bentley, but leave no doubts this car has been touched by Italian masters. If only each and every car in the world would have that luck…

Press Release

Geneva, March 2008: At the 78th Geneva International Motor show 2008, Zagato Atelier takes great pleasure in introducing the Bentley GTZ, the latest in a long line of collaborations with the very best British car manufacturers over the Milanese Atelier ’s 89 years history.

Following on from the recent presentations of the Ferrari 575GTZ in 2006 and the Maserati GS Zagato at the Villa D’Este in 2007, the Bentley GTZ is a neo-classic Zagato interpretation of the style of a British GT.

The project was conceived during a discussion between Dr. Ing. Franz Josef Paefgen, CEO of Bentley Motors Limited and Dr. Andrea Zagato, President of Zagato at the Pebble Beach Concours D’Elegance in 2006. At a ‘Tribute to Zagato’ presentation, Zagato showed a selection of 50’ 60’s models, near by the recent berlinettas presented during the last 3 years. Dr. Paefgen was struck by the beauty of those cars and reminded of the historical significance of the art of the Carrozzeria (coachbuilders) which was both being maintained and carried forward by Zagato.

Starting from the styling cues of the last neo classical coupes, which became milestones of Zagato design in the new millennium, the challenge was to apply the same design language to a completely different proportion of vehicle: the Bentley Continental GT Speed.

Even with many technical restrictions and carry-over parts in order to maintain the basic functions of this extremely sophisticated vehicle, the Zagato design team managed to give a distinctive and attractive character to the Zagato coupe.

Pronounced fender lines, double-bubble roof, round tail with all new rear combination lamp are harmoniously integrated in to an imposing body adding a more aggressive and sharp feeling without losing the absolute solidity which is part of the great charm of the original coupe. The same time the hand painted pin-stripe coordinated with the interior colour adds a refined and exclusive elegance to the extrovert body lines helps to make the look of this car appropriate to be special limited-production model born between two great automotive cultures: Bentley and Zagato.

Top Technical Partners for this project are CPP, DELVIS, PPG:

Coventry Prototype Panels (Coventry – ENGLAND):The company has unrivalled expertise in the forming of automotive panels from aluminium, magnesium and steel sheet. DELVIS GmbH (Haimhausen – DEUTSCHLAND): The contribution of Delvis was both the development of a rear light and the production of a prototype. Focus in the development was on design. PPG (Milan – ITALY): The Bentley GTZ has been painted by PPG industries, the highly respected global supplier of coatings, glass and chemicals.
Source: Zagato

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