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Monteverdi Classic Cars for Sale

The Swiss automobile company Monteverdi was founded in 1967 by Peter Monteverdi. It built luxury cars, mostly in Basel, before shutting its doors in 1984.

Monteverdi gets off the ground

Peter Monteverdi produced cars under the name MBM in the 1950s, racing them himself. Meanwhile, he ran a dealership servicing sports cars from marques like Ferrari. In 1967, Monteverdi decided to move into car production; his Monteverdi High Speed 375S coupé, constructed from aluminium and steel, was unveiled at the Frankfurt Motor Show. Although similar to several other cars of its era, it gained positive reviews. The 375S was powered by a 7.2-litre V8 engine from Chrysler, going into limited production in 1968. However, only 11 cars had been made by the time it was discontinued the following year. Pietro Frua, who had been hired by Monteverdi to design the car, produced a long-wheelbase version which was eventually sold to British manufacturer AC, who adapted it for internal use.

The height of Monteverdi's success

Monteverdi decided to change his company's direction in 1969, bringing in the small Fissore design house. A new version of the 375 Coupé was introduced, having more angular looks. In complete contrast, Monteverdi also produced a large saloon, the 375/4, and sold roughly 30 of these cars. There was also a Berlinetta model in 1974; this had tweaked styling that took some cues from the Triumph TR6 sports car. In the mid-1970s, Monteverdi turned his attention to producing off-road cars. Inspired by the success of the Range Rover, the Monteverdi Sahara mixed off-road ability with luxury. It was not a completely new model, being based on the mechanicals of the International Harvester Scout. Several V8 engines were offered, and the car sold quite well: by 1979, the company was selling 350 cars a year.

Monteverdi's decline and fall

In the late 1970s, the company produced several concept cars and one-off specials. The Sierra was based on the Plymouth Volaré, while a single estate car based on the Plymouth was also constructed. In 1980, Monteverdi built a car based on the successful Mercedes S-class luxury model. It was named the Tiara and advertised at a premium price. Unfortunately, it looked unwieldy compared to the Mercedes, never entering serious production. The last Monteverdi-branded road cars were simply conversions of Range Rover models. They were assembled in Italy, instead of Monteverdi's native Switzerland. More than 150 of these conversions were made, but after 1984 no more cars were built. The factory became a museum, and the marque was only seen again when the unsuccessful Monteverdi Onyx Formula One team competed in part of the 1990 season.

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