by Mike –
Iso Grifo No. 413 just sold for $440,000 (including buyers commission) at the RM auction in Amelia Island, which I believe is a world record price for a Grifo sold at public auction. I have said many times before that this is a very beautiful Grifo and the non-original design features are outstanding.
What RM said and what they didn’t say in their catalog description is interesting and important.
This same car was sold by RM in 2003 for $83,600 and was then labeled by RM as a “1967 Iso Grifo 7 Liter Prototype”.
What RM said
RM labeled it a “1974 Iso Grifo 7-Liter” this time around in Amelia Island. This car is not a 7-Liter Prototype and is not a 7-Liter model. This car was built in 1977-78 and RM said it is titled as a 1967.
It has a 7-Liter engine (Chevy 427) but that does not make it a 7-Liter model which was an Iso model designation. Only 65 7-Liter Grifos were made and this is not one of them.
The RM description calls the hood “a more traditional hood with a lower scoop”. This is not accurate – this is an Iso Rivolta GT style hood scoop. No Grifo ever left the Iso factory with this hood scoop so it is not at all “traditional”.
What RM did not say
They did not say that this Grifo originally had a Ford 351 engine, that it was originally a series 2 Grifo with the partially covered headlights, it was originally black with tan interior and that it had the pagoda style hood scoop.
They also did not explain why the chassis number was changed from 413 to 223 and the model year was defined as 1967 – which is several years before any part of this car existed.
This photo below of Iso Grifo No. 413 was published in 1983 in the “Griffon”, the publication of the Iso & Bizzarrini Owner’s Club, in issue Volume 3, No. 2 & 3.
Winston Goodfellow explains in the “Griffon”,
One Grifo was constructed after the factory closed by Ennazeta, a firm comprised of several factory employees who acquired parts inventory upon liquidation of the company’s assets.
This Iso Grifo was black with tan interior and had these features: Ford 351 engine, 5-speed transmission, recessed black rubber front bumper, reworked trunk (spare to one side) which allowed access via a flip down door between it and the rear deck and a different dash board design.
Compare this old photo above to the way the car looks today below after a Salvatore Diomante restoration and remodeling. The front end was changed from the series 2 partially covered headlights to the series 1 uncovered headlights and the hood is a totally custom design along with many other custom features.
Recently there appeared a Grifo for sale in Europe claiming the chassis No. 223. The photos of the chassis stamp did not look quite right, so I am not sure if this is really Grifo No. 223 or not. But somewhere there is (or was) an Iso Grifo that left the factory with chassis No. 223 and it is not this Grifo discussed here.
Why is an Iso Grifo that is not original in nearly every respect the world price record holder for the model?
More to come on this subject.
A brief history of Grifo No. 413 was published here.