The Petersen Automotive Museum recently opened a new exhibit, The World’s Greatest Sport Coupes, and although the museum’s curators are well qualified to set up such an exhibit on their own, they asked some other experts to weigh in. Sir Ian Callum, a British sports car designer who is currently the Director of Design for Jaguar, selected the 1961 Aston Martin DB4 Zagato. As Sir Ian explained to Autobytel, this car is based on an Aston Martin DB4 chassis that is powered by a six-cylinder engine, yielding about 300 horsepower. That alone is enough to make this Aston Martin special, but not enough to put it into “world’s greatest” territory. That’s where the Zagato body comes in. Zagato is an Italian coachmaker, whose owner is a friend of Sir Ian, and Zagato versions of high end production cars are highly sought after by collectors. The Zagato bodied version of the Aston Martin DB4 is a lot more rare than the production version, since only about 50 examples of it were built. The car is distinguished by a very muscular profile, especially over the wheel arches. Sir Ian, who designed the Aston Martin Vanquish, DB7, and DB9, says his designs were inspired in part by cars such as the DB4 Zagato.
Ian Callum’s Choice for World’s Greatest Sports Coupe is a Zagato bodied Aston