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Saturday, November 25, 2023

The One-Off Glas: A Legacy Adorned with BMW's Iconic Twin-Kidney Grille

ONE-OFF - The fascinating tale of a remarkable sports car unfolds with the history of Glas, an independent German car manufacturer renowned for its iconic Goggomobil microcar. In 1964, Glas introduced the 1300GT coupe, followed by the 1700GT, designed by the famed Italian automotive designer Pietro Frua.
The exclusive BMW-Glas 3000 V8 Fastback by Carrozzeria Frua debuted at the 1967 Frankfurt Auto Show. (Picture from: RM Sothebys)
Facing financial challenges, Glas was eventually acquired by BMW in September 1966. BMW rebranded the company as BMW-Glas, unveiling the 3000 V8 Coupe model, affectionately known as the 'Glaserati' due to its striking resemblance to the Maserati Quattroporte, also crafted by Frua. Notably, Pietro Frua's association with Glas persisted even after BMW's acquisition.
The exclusive BMW-Glas 3000 V8 Fastback by Carrozzeria Frua was the sole model featuring BMW's distinctive 'double kidney' grille.. (Picture from: OtoBlitz)
Despite its captivating design, only 418 units of the BMW-Glas 3000 V8 Coupe were manufactured between September 1967 and May 1968. In addition to the standard production model, Frua devised various experimental prototypes, including the exclusive BMW-Glas 3000 V8 Fastback—the sole model featuring BMW's distinctive 'double kidney' grille.
The interior of the BMW-Glas 3000 V8 Fastback underwent a transformation, featuring genuine-leather upholstery that harmonizes seamlessly with a new silver-blue metallic paint job. (Picture from: OtoBlitz)
While the 158bhp coupe received praise, it never went into production because BMW chose to prioritize its 3.0 CS coupe. The fastback coupe, first revealed at the 1967 Frankfurt Auto Show, continued to make appearances at subsequent events, including the Paris Motor Show in 1967, Geneva in 1968, and Barcelona in 1969. Eventually, the car found its way to a private owner after being painted red for the Barcelona show.
The BMW-Glas 3000 V8 Fastback by Carrozzeria Frua powered by a 3.0-liter V8 engine, coupled with four-speed manual transmission system. (Picture from: OtoBlitz)
To create an illusion of multiples, BMW presented the car in red at the Barcelona show, deviating from its original metallic blue. After two decades in the initial owner's collection, the vehicle transitioned to an employee, undergoing an extensive restoration, receiving a revamped interior, and a fresh coat of silver-blue metallic paint.
The BMW-Glas 3000 V8 Fastback by Carrozzeria Frua looked a little too close to Maserati designs, but it was much sleeker and lacked the large Quattroporte-style headlights. (Picture from: OtoBlitz)
In 2015, enthusiasts had the opportunity to bid on this distinctive car at an RM Sothebys event in Villa Erba, Italy. Despite an estimated price tag of €380,000 - €480,000, the car remained unsold by the end of the auction.
This enigmatic piece of automotive history, with its unique blend of design and heritage, continues to captivate enthusiasts and collectors alike, embodying the essence of an era when craftsmanship and innovation converged in the world of automobiles. *** [EKA | FROM VARIOUS SOURCES | RM SOTHEBYS | SILODROME | UNCRATE | AUTOWEEK ]
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