Fornasari's Zagato-like Gigi 311 Sports Car


March 19, 2013

Fornasari Gigi 311 GT

Fornasari Gigi 311 GT

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Off-kilter boutique auto-maker Fornasari brought to light its latest design venture this past month in Geneva – the Gigi 311 GT. Shown as what appears to be a rolling chassis only the Gigi 311 is promoted as a performance GT with full customization options.

Founded in 1999 by the son of Gigi Fornasari, a fifties era Alfa and Maserati racer, Fornasari Automobilia has to now produced an almost sociopathic mish-mash of vehicles with an infatuation with 80’s styled 8-bit angular designs. Hummer and Cayenne like vehicles, oversized racing buggy things and a variety of mixed-use vehicles finish out what can only be described as an exercise in ambitious overdesign. Fornasari’s new Gigi 311 GT is, albeit somewhat unoriginal in design, a welcome departure from some of the firm’s more unique offerings.

Subtly blatant in its borrowing of inspirational design aspects from the likes of Aston Martin’s DB4 Zagato and more recent V12 Zagato, Abarth’s bubbly Bialbero, Bentley’s 2008 Zagato GTZ concept, and Ferrari’s 250 GT Zagato Berlinetta, Fornasari makes no apology for its new take on the classic GT.

Key design elements that give away previous marques' influences can be found in the subtle bubble depression running the length of the roof. This treatment can be seen on almost all Zagato influenced pieces, but on the 311 the roof-dip starts behind the windscreen and carries through to the squat GT rear window. Proportionally the show car presents its lines better than the website rendered versions, but the final execution still comes off as forced, missing Zagato’s masterful finishing touch. A for effort though.

Obviously built specifically for Geneva the 311 show car is promised to be powered by an American inspired 6.2 liter, 500 HP V8 modified specifically for Fornasari. According to the company, customers can order the car to spec in either carbon fiber or all aluminum. Would imagine the price point would vary significantly between the two options. Weight figures put the car at an amazingly low 1,000 kg (2,200 lbs) ... whether this is with engine or not is undisclosed.

Under the Zagato influenced body a tubular frame of 450 stainless steel molybdenum tubes completes out the underlying architecture. Reminiscent of Mercedes tubular Gullwing design, the setup is designed to provide torsional and lateral strength while keeping weight to a minimum.

The hand finished interior – aluminum with leather accents – is frequented with old world wood inserts, brushed aluminum bits, tiny little toggles switches and a gauge configuration reminiscent of many automotive things circa the 1960s. A cross between the excessive sparkle factor of a Spyker and a Triumph TR6 as it were.

Designed as a two-seater, Fornasari reports the Gigi 311 GT will in fact throw out performance figures of 3.5 seconds to 100 km/h (62 mph), and wait for it, a top speed of 340 km/h (211 mph), essentially crushing many an exotic supercar via some type of American derived powerplant. Price point is quoted just shy of the US$300,000 mark.

Source: Fornasari

About the Author
Angus MacKenzie Born on the cold, barren Canadian plains of Calgary, Alberta, Angus MacKenzie couldn’t decide between marketing, automotives or an entrepreneurial path - so he chose all three. With an education in automotives and marketing, Angus has rebuilt the carburetor on his 1963 Rambler Ambassador twice, gotten a speeding ticket in an F430 once, and driven & photographed everything from Lamborghinis to Maseratis to various German and Asian designs. When not writing, Angus has for the past six years been Editor-in-Chief for elemente, an internationally recognized architecture/design magazine. All articles by Angus MacKenzie

Looks a lot like my 1970 Karmann Ghia with muscle.

Jeffrey Mueller

I think it borrowed "Everything" from the Shelby Cobra!

Jo Rodrigues

Wish I still had my 67 Ghia with that thundering 52 HP indestructible, (as long as you kept oil in it) horizontally opposed, air cooled monster of a power plant. If you adjusted the valves monthly it would run forever. I learned the basics of mechanics on that VW and have yet to own an auto I loved more. My love of old vehicles must explain my attraction to the Zagato as it sure looks dated even with supposed internals of 500 HP.


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