CAR OF 1967 VIGNALE GAMINE
You wouldn’t expect a car as cute and cheerful as a Gamine – more a novelty than a realistic transport proposition – to do any wrong in the world. However, it was the car that contributed to finishing off Vignale as an Italian carrozziere.
The 1967 two-seater was based on the Fiat 500 and something of a pet project for Alfredo Vignale, who had founded his coachbuilding firm in Turin in 1948. It retained the 500’s rear engine, it featured a prominent front grille to help maintain the image of something born well before its time. However, with a top speed of just 60mph and limited appeal outside of sunny Italy – or Toyland, for that matter – plus dubious build quality and handling, only 300 examples were ever sold. The resultant financial issues prompted Alfredo to sell out to De Tomaso in 1969. He was killed three days later in an accident while driving his Maserati.
Ironically, Gamines are much sought-after today.