Bertone cars

Bertone Concept Nuccio

We thought that we could go through the last two weeks of the year without having to deal with another auto company going though bankruptcy proceedings.

Turns out, we may see one pretty soon.

According to Italy’s La Repubblica, one of Italy’s most famous design houses, Bertone , is close to filing for bankruptcy after asking for court administration on December 11th. With this move, Bertone has 120 days to get its ship in order, specifically to find new investors that could inject some much-needed financing for the company.

Despite the popularity of its more recent models, Bertone has been teetering on shaky ground since the 2008 global economic crisis, and has failed to recover, causing it to drop a whole lot of its businesses in the process, including the sale of its Grugliasco factory in Turin to Fiat . Incidentally, the said plant is now the production home of the Maserati Ghibli and Quattroporte .

But that’s not all that’s been gut-punching Bertone in recent months. It’s struggled to field orders for Bertone Workshop, a division of the company it created to help offset its losses. Heck, it’s even failed to pay its employees for months, causing a lot of them to go on strike.

All that though pales in comparison to what Bertone is reportedly going through right now. it’s very existence is in serious danger, and unless the court-appointed administrator finds new investors for the company, it’s going to be a long winter for one of our favorite Italian design houses.

The good news is that Italian media has reported that a number of companies have expressed interest in buying Bertone, including a Turkish company that offered €2 million, which is about $2.75 million at the current exchange rates, for the company.

Here’s to hoping Bertone gets to right its ship sooner than later, and in one form or another. It’s a shame that it’s going through something like this, but like it or not, such is the reality of the world these days.

Click past the jump to read a little about one of Bertone’s latest creations, the Jet 2

Aston Martin Rapide Shooting Brake "Jet 2+2" Concept by Bertone

More and more coach-built cars are getting green lights for production, leading us to believe that the market is becoming more open for cars of such unique quality.

According to Autocar, it appears that the Bertone Jet 2+2 , which we first saw a few months ago at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show , is set to be offered as a production model by Aston Martin , albeit in limited quantities.

By ’limited’, word has it that the car will only be offered as a 10-unit lot, meaning that it’s going to be extremely exclusive and as such, far from our reaches.

There are still a lot of hurdles that need to be cleared, not the least of which is the use of the name "Jet", something Bertone has previously used in its concepts. As far as Aston Martin is concerned, should it give the go-ahead to have the car built, it’s leaning towards badging it as the Rapide Shooting Brake.

That shouldn’t come as a surprise, considering that the Jet 2+2 Concept is essentially an estate take on the Rapide .

Click past the jump to read about the Bertone Jet 2+2 Concept

Source: Autocar UK

Next to theAston Martin Rapide Shooting Brake "Jet 2+2" Concept set to be unveiled at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show, Bertone has also prepared an updated version of the original Vanquish-based Jet unveiled back in 2004. The new Jet 2 is still based on the previous-generation Vanquish, but its mechanics and design have been updated to fit the all-new Vanquish.

The new Jet 2 features the same shooting brake body style as the Rapide Jet 2+2 and so happens to be the personal car of Lilli Bertone, Bertone’s president.

The new Jet 2 features an updated design, new exterior colors and a more luxurious interior trim. The model also offers increased cabin space and a 2+2 seating configuration, thanks to the added 210 mm (8.26 inches) in length.

Full details on the new Bertone Jet 2 will be unveiled during the concept’s official debut in Geneva.

A few days after posting a teaser about a Geneva-bound model that Bertone was working on, we finally get to see the car beneath the shadows.

Turns out, it’s an Aston Martin. More specifically, an Aston Martin Rapide Shooting Brake called the Jet 2+2.

The Italian design and coachbuilder is apparently building this one-off concept, showcasing the mighty Aston Martin Rapide and turning it into a shooting brake.

Granted, the Rapide is Aston Martin’s first four-door sedan in their lineup and as such, an expansion to shooting brake territory could’ve been in order down the road.

But seeing as Aston Martin and Bertone have a history of working together in the past, including the creation of the Jet 2 concept back in 2004, it only seemed appropriate that the Italian coachbuilder would be tasked by Aston to create a strict one-off model.

Aston Martin and Bertone have yet to reveal official details surrounding the Rapide Shooting Brake Jet 2+2, but Autocar managed to find out some info about the one-off concept.

Find out what the initial word is surrounding the Rapide Shooting Brake Jet 2+2 after the jump

Source: Autocar UK

Today Bertone has unveiled the first teaser image for a new concept car they are going to display next month at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show. No other details have been provided, but from what we can see it will be a mid-size four-door coupe that kind of reminds us of the Aston Martin Rapide.

The teaser image also reveals a sloping roofline, concealed rear door handles, multi-spoke alloy wheels and a cool Bertone logo. Up to this point, we cannot tell for sure what kind of powertrain the new concept is going to use, but we are pretty sure we are going to see some kind of hybrid system under the hood.

As you can see, the concept that Bertone has prepared for this year’s Geneva Motor Show is pretty different from what the company had unveiled last year at the same show - the Concept Nuccio . So, looking at the teaser image there are big chances that we will see this concept car put into production. We’ll find out soon enough whether we are right or wrong.

Bertone impressed the world with their Nuccio Concept unveiled back in March at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show and now, based on people’s reaction to the concept, Bertone has decided to offer a one-off prototype that was unveiled at the 2012 Beijing Auto Show in China.

The prototype unveiled in Beijing is fully functional and will feature a few exterior changes when compared to the initial concept. Bertone did not reveal many details on this new prototype, but the first images revealed show that the company adopted a different, more conventional solution for the headlights, and slightly thicker side mirrors. The concept’s distinctive roof and large, tapered windshield will still be offered.

Under the hood, Bertone will place a 4.3 liter V8 engine that will deliver a total of 480 HP and will mated to an automatic transmission.

This one-off prototype will be going on sale and according to Automotive News, a Chinese car collector is already waiting in the wings to make his purchase. Bertone CEO Marco Filippa said that the asking price for the Nuccio, which took an estimated 15,000 hours to design, engineer, and build, is about 2 million euro, or about $2,650,000 at the current exchange rates.

Concept cars have always been an integral part of any major auto show. These events give automakers an opportunity to showcase some of the most outlandish and over-the-top vehicles we’ll ever see.

Now that doesn’t mean that these concepts will translate to production. Actually, very few do with most of them forgotten long after the auto show ends.

At the 2012 Geneva Motor Show , we saw a lot of concept cars that piqued our curiosities one way or the other. Some were fancy, some were strange, and some just completely blew us away.

In the end, the concept cars at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show delivered on the promise of providing some edge and flavor to the proceedings. On the list below, we’ll show you all of the concepts that caught our eye, and if we do say so ourselves, some of those are just too awesome to not be sent to the production line.

Check out the concept cars from the 2012 Geneva Motor Show after the jump.

Italian coach builder, Bertone , rarely makes waves, but when they do, they have a propensity to just take your breath away. Incidentally, the last we heard from these guys was when they unveiled the Jaguar B99 Concept at the 2011 Geneva Motor Show.

Now, Bertone returns to Geneva with a new concept in tow, one that’s being called the "Concept Nuccio." Making things extra special this year is the fact that Bertone is celebrating their centennial anniversary, and to commemorate this huge milestone, they came to Geneva locked, stocked, and ready to rock.

The concept was named ’Nuccio’ in honor of Nuccio Bertone, the son of company patriarch Giovanni Bertone. It was designed as an evolution of the company’s "cab forward" that started with the 1967 Alfa Romeo Carabo , the 1970 Lancia Stratos Zero, and the 1973 Lamborghini Countach . The concept combines elements from the three concepts in an attempt to create a modern, sporty, and "extreme," fully functional sports car.

UPDATE 03/08/2012: This review has been updated with the official details and images of the Bertone Concept Nuccio.

Hit the jump for more information on the Bertone Concept Nuccio.

One thing about Bertone is that it’s been one of the most influential coach builders in automotive history. So it really sucks that with the imminent restructuring of the company, some of Bertone’s most influential concept cars from its museum collection will be offered up for auction.

But one man’s trash, so they say, is another man’s treasure. So for those that have a deep appreciation for the Italian coachbuilder and the concepts it has produced over the years, you better pencil in the RM Auctions’ event at the Concorso d’Eleganza at Villa d’Este.

In that auction, RM has will be consigning six concept cars from the Bertone Museum, with each car being a one-of-a-kind and a gem-of-a-car in every sense of the word.

The six Bertone concept cars that are scheduled to be up for auction includes the 1967 Lamborghini Marzal, the 1970 Lancia Stratos HF Zero, the 1963 Chevrolet Corvair Testudo, the 1974 Lamborghini Bravo, the 1980 Lamborghini Athon and the 1978 Lancia Sibilo.

Each car is expected to be sold for anywhere between six or seven digits, making each of the six a true collector’s item.

UPDATE 05/24/11: The Bertone auction at Villa d’Este has finally come and gone and we now have the official prices on how much each of these concept prototypes were sold. Lots of surprises, really, including the Stratos ’HF Zero’, which sold for less than what we initially thought and the Lamborghini Bravo, which sold for three times as much as what was expected. Check out the price tag for each auctioned vehicle after the jump.

Check out details of each concept car after the jump.

Source: RM Auctions

Of all the concept cars scheduled to appear at the Geneva Motor Show, nothing intrigued us more than Bertone ’s B99 Jaguar Concept.

Not only did we have high expectations for it because of the company’s history at the Geneva Motor Show, but more importantly, we didn’t know a whole lot about this car. Sure, there have been some birds chirping about a Jaguar concept by Bertone Bertone called the ’B99’, but it wasn’t until the luxury concept was revealed at the Geneva Motor Show that we finally got a really good look at it.

To be clear, the B99 isn’t a production car - at least not yet - but a conceptual proposal for a ’baby’ Jaguar model that will feature a traditional four-door sedan body with more classic proportions and styling cues than the XJ and XF.

Seeing as this is a concept, the B99 still has a ways to go before it is given the green light for production. But from what we’ve seen of the car so far, we wouldn’t be surprised if this mysterious concept finds its way past a pipe dream and into production lines real soon.

UPDATE 03/02/11: This review has been updated with the Bertone B99’s full specs, as well as new images.

UPDATE 03/08/11: According to Automotive News, Jaguar was not impressed by the B99 concept and will not put it to production: "It is not our concept. We appreciate the fact that Jaguar is interesting enough for people to do a concept around. It’s not that we are offended by it, or against it — it is just not for us." Jaguar has plans to enter new market segments by 2014, but this will be done with their own work: "We have concepts all over the place. A lot of work has been done," said Adrian Hallmark, Jaguar’s global brand director.

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