|Ferrari 250 GT Nembo Spyder|
Nembo, short for Neri & Bonacini
The tradition of custom coachbuilding or carrozzeria died in the 1960s as new technology made “frames” obsolete. Ferrari and Alfa Romeo were among the last constructors still building automobiles with separate frames, and this accounted for the pre-eminence of Italian coachbuilders. The carrozzeria prospered, supported by sporting chassis and powerful drivetrains and nurtured by the Italian passion for design. Such supremacy drew the best talent from Italy and around the world. Californian Tom Meade went to Italy to realize in metal the shapes in his mind.
Of all the Ferrars made by Neri & Bonacini, the small series of Nembo Spyders was their greatest. From a small shop in Modena, they transformed unwanted Ferrari chassis into something much more special. Built on the 250 GT plaform, the Nembos were influenced by the Ferrari GTO, but featured distinctive proportions.
With help from Anselmo Genilini, the partnership between Giorgo Neri and Luciano Bonacini was capable of producing full scale projects. Both Neri and Bonacini had worked for Maserati's defunct racing department and met Genilini at Ferrari. By 1962, the company was in full swing and Genilini was head of the body shop.
The first Nembo Ferrari debuted in 1966 and was a named after a contraction of the partners last names. It was built upon Ferrari chassis 1623GT and resembled Drogo's own Ferrari design. This sleek Coupe was followed up by three more spyders: 1777GT, 3771GT and 2707GT sold by Tom Meade to a private collector in Lebanon (the "lost nembo").
All these cars were carefully constructed, period re-bodies that made their donor cars look staid by comparison.
Meade penned a series of cars, both mainstream and extreme, and temporarily became a leader in the Italian community of automobile stylists. In 1964 Meade made a series of three similar designs, echoing the elements of the 1964 GTO. Executing Meade’s concepts was the establishment of Srs. Giorgio Neri and Luciano Bonacini, mechanical specialists serving the Ferrari market. The three Ferrari 250 GTs were called Nembo, a neat contraction of Neri & Bonacini and the name of an Italian cartoon character with Superman-like powers. S/N 1777 GT was built for Italian Sergio Braidi.
The Nembo spyder is a wonderfully flamboyant motor car. The spyder design is perhaps best summed up by authorities Warren Fitzgerald and Richard Merritt in their definitive book Ferrari: The Sports and Gran Turismo Cars. They write: “The Neri & Bonacini spyder combines the best of GTO and GTB lines...Neri & Bonacini is one of the most beautiful Ferraris of all time and looks good from any angle.” Source
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