I think i’ve mentioned this many times before….but the Alfa Romeo Montreal is just so cool. Epic cool. The Montreal pictured here just looks mint…want, bad.
I had never heard of the ISO LELE until today. In fact I don’t even remember ever seeing a picture or anything of it. Much to my surprise I was thumbling through some UK classic car mag and saw a yellow one plastered all around a couple of pages. The first thing I thought was that it looked like a rejected Bertone concept—-the Montreal-style eyelids in the front, and the swooping Espada-like side profile. I have to say having come home and looked at some more photos—-i’m starting to see some of the 1969 Frua-inspired ‘coupe’ wedge design influences on the car pop up more. The car was penned by Gandini, which would explain this whoring of design features.
Oh, and it had a GM or a Ford sourced V8 under the hood (depending on the year it was produced between 1969 and 1974—which makes it sort of like an illegal immigrant version of a ‘wannabe’ Montreal, really….
Fascinating car. Always nice to discover new things in the world of automobiles.
all photos taken from: Concept Carz
here’s a short video i found of one being pulled out of storage and onto a flatbed. It has interesting proportions, looks a lot more ‘practical’ in shape compared to other ISOs of the time.
also a primitive, yet informative page about the Lele:
One of my favourite Alfas—-and in a beautiful owner. Nicely narrated introduction to the Alfa Romeo Montreal
I got this monstrosity of a photoshop from a blog known as Fiat Returns To America
To my friends over at that blog (nice blog, by the way), I think you have the right intent, and i applaud your appeal to resurrect the Alfa Romeo Montreal nameplate; HOWEVER good god not on a Challenger body! Have you guys seen the size of a Challenger? It is monstrous large….have you seen a Montreal in real life? it’s pretty damn small.
i do thank you for the entertainment! It would be great to see an Alfa Montreal resurrected….just not this!
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Well i gotta give it to Audi, not just because they are my favourite car company, but because they are the only company I can think of who are currently designing cars which will look classic in 10, 20, or 30 years from now (pardon me Alfa Romeo, but you’re kinda losing it). They are the only company I can think of who have attention to detail. The evidence for this is in the brand new Audi A7 introduced this past week in Germany. The rear end of the new A7 has been getting under my skin since the introduction….and now i know why.
The back end flows inwards, going back towards the body. Sure there is a bumper, however this inward flow hasn’t been used in many modern cars….until now. They have brought back the inward flow of the rear end! I know Alfa Romeo have used this ‘inward flow’ (as i refer to it) in their 8c Competizione, however it was a bit overdone with the weird round tail light, but i’m not complaining! The 8c was a stunningly designed car. I think Corvettes and special edition cars like the Ford GT also used this, but when have you recently seen it on a production sedan? i can’t remember any car in the last 10 or 20 years with this….production sedan, shall is say.
Alfa Romeo has a long history of sports cars with this inward flow, I generally recollect one of my favourite Alfa Romeos, the superb Montreal:
Audi claims their inspiration for the new style rear-end comes from them analyzing the 1970s Audi 100 Coupes and i can definitely see what they were looking at…..in fact, i think this new car has more similarity to that design than any other current Audi.
Apparently, this was a very conscious effort to consider ‘older’ designs when designing the A7. Check out this drawing that Audi issued to the press about the influences of the A7 design.
It seems though, that Lamborghini has been flirting with this idea for a while! Well at least in concept form. Check out the Lamborghini Estoque Concept and the Lamborghini Miura Concept from the past several years. Same indented inward flow rear end. Lamborghini, however, is a company essentially operated by Audi, so this isn’t surprising at all….
So what do you guys think about this? will this set a trend and bring this design sense back into the currently lackluster japanese & korean-influenced automotive design world? Can Audi influence other car makers to bring something new & old back into design? Alfa Romeo from a few years ago (2000-2007) really influenced alot of automotive design, however it didn’t last…..but I feel that Audi has already caused all these companies to use “big grilles”….can they get the rest of the industry to throw a bit of retro in the game? I hope so.
Fantastic new book written by Bruce Taylor outlines the story, development, and information behind the Alfa Romeo Montreal. One of my all-time favourite cars, this book looks outstanding! Will have to pick up a copy when my wallet fills up again.
You can preview most of the book on Google Books:
convinced? wanna pre-order a copy at Amazon.com
By far one of my favourite Alfa Romeos, the Montreal was almost like a ‘mini-Miura” in many ways. Inside this small-ish shell, it had a big heavy V8 nested away. Some people said it was too soft, and too sloppy to be a real sports car….but i don’t think it matters. It was like an italian muscle car…..with a brilliant soundtrack to boot!