Marcello Gandini is one of the most innovative automotive designers ever to grace the earth. Marcello Gandini created many astonishing automotive products the world has ever seen.
Alfa Romeo Montreal, Bugatti EB110, Ci zeta Moroder V16T, De Tomaso Pantera, Ferrari 308 GT4, Fiat X1/9, Iso Lele, Lamborghini Countach, Lamborghini Diablo, Lamborghini Espada, Lamborghini Jarama, Lamborghini Miura, Lancia Stratos, Maserati Ghibli II, Maserati Khamsin, Renault R5 Turbo, Citroën BX Hatchback, and BMW 5 Series 1st generation cars were designed by Marcello Gandini.
He also designed several iconic concept cars such as the Alfa Romeo Stratos Zero, Alfa Romeo 33 Carabo, Bertone Pirana, BMW 5 Series Garmisch concept, Ferrari Rainbow, Lancia Sibilo, TaMo Racemo, Volvo Tundra, Stola S81 Stratos, and Stola S86 Diamanté.
The original Lancia Stratos was designed for rally racing and especially for competing on both loose and tarmac surfaces.
It wasn’t a commercial success due to the lack of posh interior and high price tag which was in the range of a Dino Ferrari. Many opted for Dino Ferrari’s due to the lavish interior, more interior space, and easier accessibility.
Like many classic cars of the day, it wasn’t appreciated enough.
Despite its thoroughbred rally winning heritage, it was a commercial failure.
Today a decent example can cost you more than one million Euros.
Due to the high demand, companies like Lister Bell are offering kit cars based on the accurate dimensions of the original car.
Though many consider the car as too hard to handle and has a mind of its own, many automotive experts and professional drivers still consider it a masterpiece.
Nearly 40 years after the inception of it, people still talk about it.
To address the demands made by the Stratos enthusiasts, Marcelo Gandini decided to create a new prototype car paying homage to the original Lancia Stratos.
It was designed by Marcello Gandini for the Italian-based automotive manufacturer and designing-house, Stola.
Stola is an Italian automotive designing house that has been around since 1919. It is famous for designing and developing prototypes for many major automotive manufacturing companies.
One of their most famous concept cars is the one-off Maybach Exelero which was designed and developed in collaboration with Daimler Benz engineers.
During the 2001 Turin Motor Show, 27 years after the original Stratos was unveiled, Stola unveiled the S81 Stratos concept car.
The S81 name was a reference to their 81st anniversary since Alfredo Stola, the founder of the company established his workshop way back in 1919.
The Stola S81 Stratos was designed to house a Maserati V8 from the Maserati 3200 GT, delivering 370 horsepower.
Being a full-size scale model, it didn’t feature any mechanical components to power the car.
Any production plans for the car weren’t publicized by the company, and it was rather a statement of what they could do and what they are capable of doing.
The Stola S81 Stratos is a beautiful car and clearly pays its tribute to the original Lancia Stratos by embracing the designing cues of the original car such as the low roofline, wider track, curved wrap-around windshield, those big funky looking wheel arches, and rear mid-engine rear-wheel-drive layout.
However, it was different in some ways, as it came with LED lights shaped to accommodate the body lines, a rear light strip that was curved along with the body panels.
The interior was more lavish and even featured a head-up display, a feature that wasn’t available in even most posh supercars of the day.
The Stola S81 Stratos is rumored to be in the collection of Milanese architect and businessman, Corrado Lopresto.