When we think about an Italian body designer and builder, we quickly think of Bertone, Pinninfarina and Zagato. Maybe of Touring or Castagna. Each and every one of them are masters in the creation of very special creations.
Although less big – and known – than the first three Carrozzeria’s mentioned above, Carrozzeria Castagna was founded in 1849 in Milan by Carlo Castagna for building luxurious carriages. Thanks to the help of a few rich Milanese families, the company was growing into a well-known coach builder. By the end of the 19th century, the first bodies for motorized vehicles were built. Later on the chassis of Alfa Romeo, Lancia, Hispano Suiza, Isotta Fraschini, and Mercedes will be fitted with special bodies.
There is nothing to go for Castagna. Do you want an open-top Fiat 500 for hot beach days? It’s possible! Complete with shower, refrigerator and wooden ‘back deck’ for sunbathing. It will costs you about 80,000 euros, because the Italians need easily 2,000 hours for the metamorphosis.
We have seen a number of interesting projects from the Milan-based company. Take for example the ‘special-request’ one-off Bentley GT Shooting Break and the Rolls-Royce Phantom Coupé, or the small-production Fiat 500 Tender Beachcar, the Mini Tender Beachcar, and the Peugeot 508 RXH. To name a few.
These coachbuilds will give you an idea of what the Italian bodybuilder is planning to do. Not only the Fiat and Mini creations are very popular, the Peugeot 508 RXH introduced in 2014 is doing very well too. The latter provided the inspiration for a new project.
Currently the Italian coachbuilders are busy with an Audi A8 of the previous generation. That model is transformed into Avant and gets a tough outdoor look. Many details are not yet known, but according to Castagna it is a serious project. The company uses aluminum and carbon fiber. The latter material is used, among other things, for the extension of the roof.
What Castagna has done is to give the luxury saloon a new roof line with a traditional car shape and to add Allroad-inspired details, such as the silver roof rails, black plastic cladding for the wheel arches and sills and aluminum accents for the front and rear bumpers. The profile of the rear doors clearly shows that the car was designed as a sedan, but the new roof integrates neatly into the overall design.
The engine choice has fallen on the W12 quattro variant with a 6.3-liter W12 engine, an output of 500 hp and four-wheel drive. In other words; this will be the world’s first and only Audi A8 Avant Allroad W12. Even though Audi had such a kind of car in mind a long time ago, witness the Audi Avantissimo Concept from 2001.
With their program, Castagna reintroduced the idea of a One Off: a modern interpretation of the tailor-made concept that was first adopted in the 1920s. These ‘coachbuild’ vehicles are thoroughly tested and designed according to specific requirements by Castagna. Custom – hand – made in Milan, Castagna takes orders for unique conversion projects.
Come into the world of Castagna.