BMW and Zagato have collaborated on a stylish new coupé which will premiere at this year’s Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este. Although purely a one-off, the last car Zagato created for Villa d’Este was the Aston Martin V12 Zagato, which enters production later this year.
Like the Aston, BMW’s Zagato Coupé is ready for road use – “Zagato has always provided its customers with ready-to-drive cars which can be sent into action on the road or race track without further ado – and the BMW Zagato Coupé fits the same template,” says Dr Andrea Zagato, who represents the third generation of his family to sit at the helm of the company.
“It is relatively easy to build a design study which is not intended for use on the road. Not having to meet any stipulations governing crash safety or pedestrian protection opens up a host of new avenues in terms of design,” he adds. “The challenge lies in injecting the emotional appeal of a concept car into a road-legal machine. And we think we have succeeded in doing just that with the BMW Zagato Coupé.”
The unique character of the BMW Zagato Coupé is reflected in the smallest details. The 19-inch five-spoke light-alloy wheels have a hint of propeller about them, offering a subtle nod to the origins of both companies. Indeed, both BMW and Zagato founder Ugo Zagato took an airborne route into automotive construction.
Another special highlight of the BMW Zagato Coupé is its paintwork. The exclusive paint finish, Rosso Vivace, uses an expressive shade of red to bring the surfaces and forms of the BMW Zagato Coupé to life.
Depending on how the light hits the body, the colour spectrum ranges from something close to black all the way to a brilliant red. This remarkable depth and radiance is possible thanks to sophisticated paint application technology, where the a black primer coat is applied followed by a layer of shimmering metallic silver. Then come six ultra-thin coats of the exclusively developed red shade to deliver this unique effect, followed by two layers of clear coat to seal in the colour.
The interior is clearly structured in customary BMW style, but was picked up by the Zagato designers and given further emphasis using an exclusive colour and materials concept. Horizontal lines in the instrument panel and doors, are used to accentuate the Zagato Coupé’s sporting character, featuring a light and dark shade of grey leather trim.
Red decorative stitching in the instrument panel, doors and seats bring the colour of the body into the interior, while a “z” embroidered into the seats is the clearest reference in the interior to the origins of the BMW Zagato Coupé.
From the outset the BMW Zagato Coupé was intended as a “Vmax concept”, a road-registered, aerodynamically optimised machine capable of achieving high speeds yet at the same time meeting all legal requirements and crash-related stipulations – a car that is ready and eager to be driven.
Unfortunately, despite telling us the Zagato Coupé has already been tested at high speeds on the BMW test track, they neglect to say which engine is fitted under its bonnet.