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Sunday, August 23, 2020

Tom Meade’s final GT creation in Italy

Some time ago, we delved into the fascinating world of the Thomassima, an iconic car model crafted by the ingenious Tom Meade. The initial creation, aptly named Thomassima I, emerged in 1962, only to meet an unfortunate demise in the devastating flood that swept through Florence in 1966.
1969 Thomassima III 'Lacrima Rossa' is the third model produced by Tom Meade based on a Ferrari 250 GT Coupe. (Picture from: DriveTribe)
In the wake of this setback, Thomassima II took center stage in 1967, surpassing its predecessor in sheer beauty. Commissioned by a private owner in Northern California in 1966, Tom Meade completed the construction in 1968, and the car made its debut at the prestigious 1968 Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance. Astonishingly, Thomassima II vanished from public sight in 1971, only to resurface in 2015 and subsequently change hands for a staggering $9 million, or approximately Rp.121.2 billion!
1969 Thomassima III is the third model produced by Tom Meade and the most famous of his creations now on display at the Museo Casa Enzo Ferrari in Italy. (Picture from: DriveTribe)
The culmination of Tom Meade's creative prowess materialized in Thomassima III, affectionately named Lacrima Rossa. This third iteration, born in 1969, showcased Meade's unique interpretation of Ferrari styling during the sixties and seventies. Built upon the foundation of a Ferrari 250 GT Coupe, Thomassima III stands as the most celebrated among Meade's creations. The additional moniker, 'Lacrima Rossa' or 'Red Tear,' was bestowed by Josh Lange, a close friend of Meade, encapsulating the essence of Tom's final automotive masterpiece.
1969 Thomassima III uses a 3-liter V12 Ferrari engine with a power output of 237 hp. (Picture from: RetroRides)
The Thomassima III emerges as a front-engined supercar inspired by the legendary 330 P4 sports racing model, housing a formidable 3-liter V12 Ferrari engine boasting 237 horsepower. Crafted with precision, the design features a carbon fiber chassis, molded seats, and meticulously handmade instruments, all enveloped in an aluminum body adhering to Tom Meade's meticulous design principles.
1969 Thomassima III has multi-level, multi-functional instruments, and hand made like most of the car's details. (Picture from: DriveTribe)
In an era where building one's car was a rare feat, Tom Meade stood out, employing coachbuilding expertise in Modena and utilizing aristocratic 1960s Ferrari components as the foundation for his Thomassima III. The sweeping style of this masterpiece is a testament to Meade's keen eye for breathtaking bodywork.
1969 Thomassima III's seats molded into the tub, much like the Thomassima II. (Picture from: DriveTribe)
The Thomassima III caused a stir when exhibited at Italy's automobile manufacturers’ show in Turin. Crowds flocked to witness Meade's creation, prompting event organizers to relocate the display to accommodate the enthusiastic throngs. Even Mattel, the renowned diecast model manufacturer, immortalized the Thomassima III as part of its Hot Wheels collections.
1969 Thomassima III is the third model produced by Tom Meade featured the gull-wing doors as the access into its cabin. (Picture from: DriveTribe)
Presently, Thomassima III rests under the protective care of Meade's adopted son in northern Italy. Though its odometer reads under 300km, the car has not graced the roads in decades. However, its timeless shape, embodying the quintessence of 1960s front-engined Italian sports cars, continues to captivate admirers.
Tragically, Tom Meade passed away in August 2013 at the age of 74. In the subsequent year, a revelation shook the automotive world – Thomassima III was not just a long-lost dream but a masterpiece deserving a place of honor in the Galleria Ferrari museum in Fiorano, right by the Maranello factory. An enduring legacy, the Thomassima III remains an awe-inspiring testament to the vision and craftsmanship of Tom Meade. *** [EKA | FROM VARIOUS SOURCES | THOMASSIMA.COM | DRIVETRIBE | DRIVE-MY.COM | RETRORIDES ]
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1 comment :

  1. I remember in the early 80s he had a small work shop right in Milan in the arena garage I worked with him there on a few projects. He had a apartment right around the corner Tom was a great guy and designer and car guy had a heart of gold the last time I spoke to him was the mid 90s condolences to his son RIP