For whatever reason, the 2018 Aston Martin DB4 GT crossed my path again today. That name is a funny one, as the DB4 GT was one of Aston’s great cars of the 1960s, but the company decided to remake 25 of them this year. It’s part of an interesting new trend, and I’d like to see it keep going.
These modern “continuations” aren’t exclusive to Aston. Jaguar famously remade a bunch of E-Types over the past few years, finishing orders that were never quite completed as intended back when the company was a much smaller, less resource-rich company.
It’s a nice idea, and for some reason it seems largely restricted to British carmakers who were busy during peak Boomer Years.
I think this should broaden out.
Take, for instance, the Alfa Romeo SZ. The last of the great rear-drive Alfas, it was an ultra-limited production run of (SZ) coupes and (RZ) roadsters, glorious to drive, even more glorious to behold.
Built from 1989 through 1993, production only just cracked into the four digits, which is a shame as they are one of the coolest cars in modern history. Jalopnik’s own Peter Orosz gave the car a good summation a few years ago after seeing one incredibly parked right on the street:
The ES-30 was Alfa Romeo’s swan song to rear-wheel drive and independence. It was based on the 75 sedan, the last Alfa conceived before Fiat ownership. As deliciously classic a layout as sports sedans come: Giuseppe Busso’s wonderful 3-liter V6 up front with the transmission in the back in a transaxle layout. Power is sent via a limited-slip differential to rear wheels suspended by a de Dion tube. It was balanced, simple and lithe, with a body mass very much on the near side of 3,000 pounds.
The 75 was weird enough with its angles that defy all logic and an interior more in common with Epcot than with the automobile, but the ES-30 is a whole other ballpark. Perhaps it is the inevitable eccentricity of its French-Italian shared parentage. Robert Opron designed the car, the same man who created the Citroën SM, that gorgeous hybrid of Citroën style and Maserati power. Or was it Citroën unreliability and Maserati…unreliability? In any case, Opron penned the 75’s goodbye and Antonio Castellana finished up his sketches—to be skinned in thermoplastic injection moulded composite body panels. A strange choice for a car, but then plastics and Alfa Romeos have a way of meeting up every once in a while.
Their 3.0-liter V6s should sing again, no? Their roof-ish wings should cut once more through the air, or?
I wouldn’t call them beautiful, but they are amazing. More people deserve to see them face-to-face, and I think Fiat Chrysler might as well set a small chunk of budget away to put a few more out, even if the cars have to be non-road legal, as Aston’s GTs are.