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Italian Auto Legends: Classics of Style and Design [Illustrated] [Paperback]

Michel Zumbrunn , Richard Heseltine
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

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Book Description

1 Sep 2008
Italian car design engenders a unique sense of passion. Its great names Alfa Romeo, Ferrari, Lamborghini, Lancia, Maserati are associated with some of the most seductive cars ever made and resonate the world over. Now in an unabridged compact edition, this bestselling book brings together 57 of the most important Italian cars designed from 1907 to the present day, each one representing a key moment in Italian car design. With an introduction describing the epic history of Italian motoring and its great marques, a succinct description of each car's development and performance, and the unparalleled images of one of the world s top car photographers, Italian Auto Legends is the definitive tribute to the original car-styling capital of the world.

Product details

  • Paperback: 296 pages
  • Publisher: Merrell Publishers Ltd; illustrated edition edition (1 Sep 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1858944317
  • ISBN-13: 978-1858944319
  • Product Dimensions: 2.3 x 22.3 x 15.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 318,570 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


'Superb photography with intelligent text...a veritable design feast.' --Automobile, Monday 1, January 2007

'Collection includes many of the most seductive and exhilarating cars ever produced.' --Bookseller Buyers Guide, Friday 14, July 2006

'this is just the book to sit down and browse through at your leisure.' --Auto Italia, Thursday 4, December 2008

About the Author

Michel Zumbrunn is one of the world’s most celebrated car photographers. For over forty years his work has been featured in car magazines worldwide. Richard Heseltine is features editor of MotorSport magazine and has contributed to over forty other journals, including Autocar, Autosport and Classic and Sports Car.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars It's a very small book 30 Sep 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Good content, but I was expecting a large, around A4 size book, it is around A5 size.
All in all, a good perchase at its price
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5.0 out of 5 stars Good reference book 25 Sep 2013
By Alkis01
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is a very good visual reference book, especially if you are an automotive or industrial designer. It features historically important Italian cars but I assume one of the selection criteria was aesthetics as all cars are beautiful. The quality of the photos is very good and they cover multiple angles of the same car. The text description for every car is brief but as I mentioned above this book is really about quality photos.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gorgeous, gorgeous book 16 Feb 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The quality of the photos is beyond reproach (besides the usual issue of fingerprints on the glossy paper) and it is a different experience to see a a car's picture spread on two rather large format pages. Of course, the cars themselves are a treat for the eyes, and going through them gives an idea of how things have come about over the last some 80 years.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.3 out of 5 stars  7 reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful photos, but lopsided coverage... 29 Jan 2008
By A. E. Harvey - Published on
The photos are very high quality studio shots, but a buyer should be aware the coverage is more impressive and thorough of the pre-1965 era. There are some omissions of important cars from the 1960's through 80's.

I bought this after reading a positive review in a British auto magazine and seeing the nice cover photo of the Ferrari 250GTO. You get very very nice studio photos of select classic Italian cars. The emphasis is on pre-1965 cars, but the title didn't say that. The cars are presented chronologically starting in 1907 and by 3/4 of the book we are at 1960. Fewer photos are dedicated to each post-1960 car. This leaves sparse and perhaps a bit Ferrari-centric coverage of the remaining years up to 2004, but even the lovely Ferrari Lusso gets only one photo. Everyone has their own taste. Personally I am disappointed by the following: You won't find the Iso Grifo, Ghia 450SS, Maserati Ghibli, DeTomaso Mangusta, Alfa-Romeo Tipo 33, or the Ferrari 288GTO. Yet you'll find the relatively unappealing and in my humble opinion "non-classic" DeTomaso Vallelunga. You'll find the Pininfarina Ferrari 512S showcar from which few styling cues were used on production cars, but you won't find the Lamborghini Marzal or Afla Romeo 33 Carabo. I do give the book credit for its early year coverage and beautiful photos of those cars, and I'm grateful it's not trying to be a historical or technical reference piece saving more space for photos.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Italian Auto Legends -- Beautifully photographed and written 14 May 2010
By Martin L. Greenman - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This is a thoroughly researched, well-written and beautifully photographed book. Those who have followed the design of Italian sports cars will inevitably be surprised by some cars that have been included and disappointed by some that were omitted (the Maserati Ghibli, for one, is a personal favorite). But that is a minor point. The book should be in every collection of books on Italian cars. (Let me also plug the incomparable "World Sports Cars" by Frank Oleski, which has cogent essays and stunning photographs in Alpine settings and follows the same progressive format, from 1945-1980, in selecting cars from those years.)
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Italian Auto Legends 20 Oct 2007
By N. Young - Published on
Before I ordered this book, I read another review that said the reader was disappointed. However, I took a chance and bought it. The book was exactly what I wanted. It may not have all the technical stuff the other reviewer wanted, but if you're more interested in the sheer beauty of these magnificent automobiles, you won't be disappointed.
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Reference and Idea book for model car builders 28 Aug 2013
By Gregg Hutchings - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
As the editor and publisher of Model Cars Magazine, I am always looking for reference and idea books for help with building model cars. I saw this book: Italian Auto Legends: Classics of Style and Design, here on, and I knew I just had to have it. Not just for the cover feature, but for hopefully what would be inside.
And boy, was I not disappointed! There are some great cars in here, some I have never heard of or seen before. The ideas and references that are in this book is well worth the very reasonable cost of it.
I could go on and on about this book, but if you are a model car builder, and want a great reference book, then GET THIS BOOK! Just seeing the stock Fiat Topolino made me want to go crazy and try and build one from the old Revell drag body. Boy, would that be a project! The Ferrari's and Maserati's are what I was looking for, and I have enough photos and references to help me build some great models.
I can't say enough.


Gregg Hutchings
Model Cars Magazine
5.0 out of 5 stars AWESOME! 22 Aug 2013
By James Manry - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Extremely well written with fabulous photography of many cars this "car buff" has never seen or heard of. Great value, worth much more than I paid.
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