We all know Franco Scaglione as the designer of the Alfa Romeo 33 Stradale or the exceptional BAT prototypes, but his career began with something less high-catching and particular. The Concorso d'Eleganza di Meano was an opportunity to show to the public the Fiat 1400 Coupé that Scaglione designed in 1952 for the Carrozzeria Balbo of Turin, a one-of-a-kind model recently restored by Lopresto.
The event, organized by the Rotary Club - Brescia Meano delle Terre Basse in the frame of the Festa del Borgo, saw the participation of about fifty cars of all eras, and the Fiat 1400 Balbo was among the most admired by the public. The unique history of this model, presented at the Turin Motor Show in 1952 and again in 1953, but above all the first work of the brilliant designer, also captured the attention of the jury, who awarded it the first class prize. The Best in Show, on the other hand, went to a Cisitalia 202 SMM.
The Fiat 1400 Balbo from the Lopresto collection was a well-known car, but attributed to Giovanni Michelotti. During the researches for the restoration, the discovery of a sketch signed "FraSca" allowed to reveal the true author of the design. The shark nose and rear fins recall lines that will soon be used for the BAT, and the pavilion with very thin pillars is a very modern solution for the time. The upholstery, in two-tone fabric like the exterior, is original, carefully preserved.
For the occasion, Corrado Lopresto was also awarded the EVE prize as "Italian standard-bearer of historic car collecting in the world".