The age of coachbuilding may just be making a comeback. Ken Okuyama, the ex-Pininfarina designer who was responsible for the Ferrari Enzo and Maserati Quattroporte, has created one hell of a follow-up to the polarizing Code 57 unveiled at last year’s Monterey Car Week. I got to see it and shoot it.
We were invited by Steve Feldman, better known as Steve POV, from Fusion Motor Sport in Chatsworth, California to have a sneak preview of Ken Okuyama’s latest creation, the Code 0, before its official unveiling at The Quail during this year’s Monterey Car Week.
Okuyama isn’t just known for his car designs. In Japan, he’s designed dozens of trains as well as selling hundreds of thousands of his designer eye glasses worldwide. He also does talks at various design institutions both in Japan and abroad.
Okuyama has done various redesign work on existing platforms. Alongside the Code 9, based on the Lotus Elise, and the Code 57, based on the Ferrari 599, the Code 0 is a departure from the Ferrari-based designer as it uses a Lamborghini Aventador as the base.
Like the Code 57 before it, it’ll be a limited run of five units. Customers will need to supply their own base Aventador for the rework and it’ll set them back $1.5 million on top of the base car. It’ll take around six months for the car to be delivered to the customer.
The transformation from Aventador to Code 0 will be done in Japan. Three units of the Code 57 have been sold to Japanese customers, with two additional units earmarked for overseas clients. A similar ratio of customers is expected for the Code 0 as well.
From a technical perspective, it’s identical to the Aventador. There’s still a 6.5-liter naturally aspirated V12 with a seven-speed single clutch paddle shift gearbox driving all four wheels. The interior is largely the same, too, except there’s more silver and green surfaces.
The exterior design is where the Code 0 sets itself apart. Taking inspiration from iconic wedge-shaped cars from the past, there’s a lot of Countach and Lancia Stratos about the profile and stance. For those Gran Turismo players out there, it also sort of reminds me of Japan’s Dome Zero Concept that was in a bunch of those games. According to Steve, Okuyama wanted the front to hark back to a time of “cleaner front ends” and it certainly has that.
You might notice the “floating” bodywork design is similar to that of Lamborghini’s latest hypercar, the Centenario. I’m not sure if that’s a coincidence or not. From the rear it’s quite LFA-ish, in particular the triangular exhaust arrangement and rear vents. The massive reverse light bar is a cool touch.
As you might be able to see there’s little to no look-at-me aero parts on the car. There are none of the usual wings and spoilers that Lambos so often have to grab attention, and ostensibly to shove air around. All the attention of the Code 0 comes from the fact it looks utterly bonkers. It’s exactly what a Japanese Lambo would look like in 2117.
Fusion Motor Sports will become the point of contact for Okuyama’s brand in the United States. It’s very appropriate that Steve would be involved, as he became famous showcasing Japanese car culture through his YouTube videos.
One video of his you might be familiar with is this one, which has gained more than 2.5 million views. This was where he showed the world Morohoshi-san’s crazy and unique style of Lamborghini modifications:
So basically, what’s happened is I’ve come from Japan to the United States to see a car by a Japanese designer that’ll be made in Japan with an Italian car as its base, and will debut at a car show in California.
On top of that, the person showing us the car is an American who brought Japanese car culture, particularly the crazy Lambos from Japan, into the limelight. What could be more globalized than that?