Robb Design Portfolio: Car Shark
1970 Monteverdi Hai 450SS
Swiss automobile manufacturer Peter Monteverdi introduced his mid-engine masterpiece, the Hai, at the 1970 Geneva Auto Show. He established his company in 1967 as a maker of refined, exclusive GT cars designed to cross the Continent, yet this low-slung two-seater—its name is German for "shark"—also took aim at supercar contemporaries like Ferrari’s Daytona, Lamborghini’s Miura, and de Tomaso’s Mangusta.
The Hai’s svelte body, penned by Englishman Trevor Fiore of the Italian coachbuilder Fissore, bears elegant creases and a low profile. Chrysler provided the power, contributing a mighty 426 cu in longitudinally mounted Hemi V-8 mated to a 5-speed ZF transmission.
Regrettably, the debut of the shark failed to spawn orders; Monteverdi built but two, and two replicas constructed from spare parts followed. The first of the initial pair (pictured), currently for sale at Fantasy Junction (510.653.7555, www.fantasyjunction.com), recently was restored to its original specifications.