Home » Cold Start: Of Rivoltas And Ramblers

Cold Start: Of Rivoltas And Ramblers

Cs Iso Rivolta

I’ve always been really fond of the ISO Rivolta, a Corvette engine in a dashing Italian pantsuit. I happened to look at one just now and realized something fascinating, unexpected, and even, yes, dangerous. That realization is that the Rivolta strangely looks a lot like what an aggressive sports-coupe version of an early-to-mid-’60s Rambler American may have been. Stop laughing, I mean it.

I know it seems improbable; but before you place a slice of ham on your keyboard and slam your laptop closed in disgust, trapping the ham between your screen and keyboard for reasons I can’t even guess at – seriously why did you do that? Look how greasy it made both your screen and keyboard! Sometimes I just don’t get you. Anyway, look at a Rambler American:

Cs Rambler

See what I’m getting at? The grille shape, those very distinctive “eyebrows” over the headlights, some similar character lines – I don’t know, it just feels like part of the family. Yes, I’m saying and ISO Rivolta reminds me of a Rambler. That’s out in the world now, and I stand by it.

Also, you look very nice today.

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19 Responses

  1. I was thinking last night about cars with angry eyebrows–not sculpted in like the Rivolta, but as part of the headlight signature. It would be interesting to measure the stress levels of a driver being tailgated at night by an angry-eyes car vs. one with an earnest, round-eyed look. As for me, I think it has a subconscious effect.

    1. As a driver of a vw golf, it doesn’t matter who’s tailgating me, it always annoys me, and I can’t tell the difference without blinding myself!
      I save my disgust for angry jeep eyes to daytime.

  2. It kind of does, always thought the American was punching a bit above it’s economy car weight in terms of style to begin with, almost had a chopped top look to them

  3. Knew a guy who had one. Not this example but the Fidia S4.
    It was..interesting. The rear seat was just a bit higher than the front seats to give the passengers better view. That’s some attention to detail.

    1. I love the Fidia, but the design definitely has a Quasimodo air about it. I would presume that the height of the rear seat was actually the result of the rear suspension layout or something, justified by Iso on the grounds of visibility – as any car company would. The Volvo 340 had a similar setup because the transaxle/Variomatic layout, not sure what Volvo said about it.

    2. That’s fascinating, how ahead of its time – I remember in the 2000s when SUVs started boasting of that kind of automotive stadium seating, such as it were.

  4. ISOs are wonderful “angry” looking little cars. I’d rather have these angry eyebrows than the aftermarket eyebrows you see on current Jeeps.
    Speaking of angry eyebrows, how about a 1960 Plymouth Fury?

  5. Yeah….I see the resemblance.. kind of like the difference/not much difference between two first cousins when you see them together at Thanksgiving at Grandma’s house… but one is honey-glazed ham and the other is ham hocks…

  6. Hey sometimes problems with my computer is a great excuse to miss a project deadline. Also angry eyes or grinning doofus I dont like to be tail gated.

  7. The Iso Rivolta looks revolted whereas the Rambler is just smelling something sour.

    60’s and 70’s Japanese cars had mostly happy faces, how times change.

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