Italian Car Maker

Huge and heavy, and about as green as offshore drilling, the $341,000 Bentley Brooklands ( www.bentleymotors.com ) is nothing that any car should be these days. Yet producing three-ton vehicles...
Oh, to be among the fortunate 500, those quick-witted souls (fewer than one-fifth of whom are Americans) sharp enough to acquire one of Alfa Romeo’s 8C Competizione coupes. This is the first Alfa to...
Ferrari is engaged in some dark alchemy these days. How else could the 430 Scuderia be both quicker and more drivable than the car on which it is based, the F430? Perhaps Ferrari’s engineers did not...
Ducati first tantalized the faithful in 1964 with the Apollo prototype, a virtual Holy Grail for Ducatisti due to its 4-cylinder desmodromic powerplant. After an agonizingly long wait, the MotoGP-...
Finally, a Jaguar that embraces the purity of its past and just might rekindle devotion to a brand following a decade of confusion and disappointments. What elevates the Jaguar XF ( www.jaguarusa.com...
An exceedingly rare 1960 Ferrari 246S Sport Dino Fantuzzi racecar could fetch as much as $6 million on May 18, when Ferrari hosts the second annual Leggenda e Passione classic car auction at its...
1952 Siata 208S Spyder The 208S represented a reversal of roles for two Turin, Italy, automakers: Siata (an acronym for Societa Italiana Applicazione Trasformazione Automobilistiche), which once had...
The 8C 2900B has been described as the cultured son of a champion athlete. It descended directly from the 8C 2900A, with which Alfa Romeo claimed the first three spots in the 1936 Mille Miglia and...
The styling of the new Moto Guzzi Breva 1200 Sport ( www.motoguzzi-us.com ), a 95 hp street bike that exceeds 130 mph, recalls the Italian manufacturer’s 1950s-era race bikes. But its engineering is...
"You can disable ESP," Alfa Romeo engineer Domenico Martino says of the 8C Competizione’s electronic stability system, "but we don’t recommend." Especially not in these conditions. It is a rainy,...
Lamborghini’s cachet might be at an all-time high. After years of cash-flow problems and a parade of owners that has ranged from Chrysler to an Indonesian investment group, the snorting bull seems to...
Children shout as I pass through their villages; "Suuuuuu-per-maaaaan!" they scream at me. In Italy, where Ascari, Fangio, Moss, Nuvolari, and other legendary racecar drivers still are revered for...
Ferrari’s racetrack-ready F430 Scuderia is all raw welds and unpainted aluminum. Naked carbon fiber stretches from the center tunnel to the doorsills; the floors are bare metal; and frills are fewer...
Bimota’s newly released DB6R is being hailed as the “more aggressive version of the successful naked Delirio” by the Italian motorcycle company. The DB6R is likely to be even more agile as it’s...
All Revved Up. Lamborghini does not simply build high-powered exotic sports cars; it creates sensations, and after I climbed out of the LP640 Roadster, my first impulse was to bum a cigarette. This...
In It for the Long Haul. The suave, Pininfarina-penned shape of the Maserati GranTurismo coupe makes a promise that the car’s performance does not deliver. While its appearance screams track star,...
Prancing and Preening Horse. The Car of the Year’s 14 entrants are an elite bunch, and yet when the 599 comes rolling in, each of the other autos is like the kid at the high school party who is doing...
Just as it did with the Ferrari that participated in our Car of the Year competition, mechanical misfortune plagued this Dino 206 SP—the fourth of 18 that Ferrari built—during its highest-profile...
The three-wheeled Piaggio MP3 400 ( www.piaggio.com ) might look odd, but you will appreciate its design on a wet or twisty road. The two 12-inch front wheels can tilt 40 degrees, providing a...
The Gift A race-driven F1 Ferrari. — Two VIP passes to all 20 Formula One races during the 2008–2009 season and an all-access pass to the Ferrari paddock and pit area during the 2008 Monaco Grand...
The Gift A rebuilt and fully restored Zagato-bodied supercharged racecar of the type that once dominated European open-road competitions. $1.2 million From the acronym of Anonima Lombarda Fabbrica...
The Gift One of the fewer than 99 coupes that are bound for the United States. — High-speed-driving lessons on the Balocco test track near Turin, Italy. $300,000 Alfa Romeo’s 8C Competizione has been...
Prepare to remove your hat at the sight of the Ducati Desmosedici RR ( www.ducati.com ) —if you do not want it blown off. This first-ever street-legal MotoGP replica is derived from the Ducati Corse...
Maserati has loosed from its Modena stables the long-awaited GranTurismo, and it is a formidable machine. Ostensibly a replacement for the GranSport, the GranTurismo is actually anything but: It...
While competing in its third Grand Prix motor racing season in 1987, Aprilia won its first title, at the Grand Prix of San Marino. Since then, the Italian producer of motorcycles and scooters has won...
Ferrari’s recently retired Formula One champ Michael Schumacher was back behind the wheel of an F/1 racer, leaving trails of rubber as he slid the car around the corners of a test track. Not far away...
The term muscle scooter might sound self-contradictory, but it aptly describes the Aprilia Sportcity 250 ( www­.apriliausa.com ). Aprilia, a unit of the Italian vehicle maker Piaggio, is best known...
Some men build cars that display a reminiscent fender flare here, an evocative shoulder swoop there, and maybe a grille that recalls an earlier decade, because they believe there is a future in...
American IronHorse Slammer Navigating the custom cruiser market can be more of a challenge than riding San Francisco’s Lombard Street on a high-neck chopper. At one end of the spectrum are extreme...
Kawasaki has been building big, 4-cylinder bikes for a long time, and all that experience and knowledge is apparent in the manufacturer’s latest flagship. The $11,899 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-14 ( www...

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