The Iso Rivolta A3C reborn: Time for Tea?


Quite a few clued-up car fans would probably struggle to identify the car seen here as a Bizzarrini 5300GT; those that did know would probably feel quite smug at having that knowledge. And they would be wrong.

This car is an Iso Rivolta A3C, and its story is a fascinating one. When Giotto Bizzarrini joined Iso Rivolta - having worked on the 250 GTO, don't forget - he wanted to continue creating race cars. His vision was the A3C, a car that was about as advanced as front-engined sportscars became before the mid-engined takeover: the engine and gearbox were moved right back for weight distribution, Bertone designed a very aero-efficient body (riveted onto the chassis) and the V8 made more than 400hp.

Despite potential the two cars produced never achieved any notable successes - listen out in the video for the issues with magnesium brake calipers... But while Bizzarrini wanted to further hone his race car, Renzo Rivolta was worried about the cost. The two fell out about it and went their separate ways, Bizzarrini of course going on to build the 5300GT.

This is where the story gets interesting, though. In 2009, with the permission of Iso Rivolta, a group called Iso Restoration was given permission to create 10 more A3Cs. And you thought historic recreations were just in the past couple of years... This beautiful video from 'An Italian Garage' documents the build process, speaks to the people involved and gets the car out on some gorgeous roads.

In fact the video is part of a longer, eight-part series called 'The Iso Rivolta Chronicles'; if this video is anything to go by, and your Iso knowledge is lacking, then the remaining episodes will most certainly be worth a watch!

See the video here.

And see here for the rest of the series.

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Comments (7) Join the discussion on the forum

  • Marcq 20 Jun 2017

    A lot of want

  • Bobo W 20 Jun 2017

    Shouldn't it be an "Iso Grifo A3C" ?

  • dinkel 20 Jun 2017

    When I 1st saw one it was John Bendalls:


    A few years later it was Roger Wills' Iso:


    It is by far the most beautiful machine to carry this colour:

  • ducnick 21 Jun 2017

    That blue one above is a Bizzarini by the looks of it, not an ISO

  • voj888 21 Jun 2017

    Bobo W said:
    Shouldn't it be an "Iso Grifo A3C" ?
    Originally it was A3C and they made two of them - at the same time Bertone was working on the Grifo.
    After the first two, Rivolta started to abandon the project and Bizzarrini took over. They made other 21 (I think) vehicles in collaboration, with various names (Iso Grifo A3C, Iso Bizzarrini A3C, Bizzarrini A3C, and so on).

    After the 23rd (ish) vehicle, the project was officially took over by Bizzarrini's new firm, and he changed the name to the final Bizzarrini 5300 GT Strada biggrin

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