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The 20 Most Interesting European Cars with American Designs

Vukasin HerbezJuly 10, 2018

  1. Fiat 1500

Although Mario Boano, the Fiat company designer conceived the 1500 as a family sedan, the 1500 looked much like the American sedans of the period. Fiat introduced it in 1961 and sold the 1500 through 1967. The Fiat 1500 was a well-engineered car with disc brakes and a roomy interior.

From the outside, this Fiat resembled many U.S.-made cars with its cool-looking grille with four headlights, chrome stripe and U.S.-inspired rear. It reminded some buyers of the Chevrolet Impala from the late ’50s.

  1. Ford Zephyr

As a subsidiary of the Detroit Ford Motor Company, it was expected that the European and British Fords would have similar designs. And they did, on numerous cars they produced in the ‘50s and ‘60s. One of the prime examples is the Ford Zephyr, a big family sedan they produced from 1962 to 1966.

This car looked like it was styled in Dearborn, Michigan, not in the UK. The massive grille, big dimensions and rear fins are quite big for a European car. Under the hood, there are either 1.7 liter four-cylinder or 2.6-liter straight six engines.

  1. Rolls Royce Silver Cloud

Rolls Royce models always had signature styles and a presence that other companies could hardly repeat. However, the Silver Cloud, which they produced from 1955 to 1966 was more than just a Rolls Royce. It was the first British luxury car to adopt American design influences.

Take a look at its dimensions, proportions and long hood. The fenders, rear end and roofline look identical to those luxury Cadillacs, Lincolns and Packards of the 1940s. And that is where Rolls designers found its inspiration for Silver Cloud.

  1. Ferrari Daytona 365 GTB/4

This one is a bit controversial since nobody expected a Ferrari to look like anything else than itself. However, in the case of the 365 GTB/4, Ferrari turned to America for design. In those days the company needed a strong seller to survive. So Enzo Ferrari decided that a new car should be designed to sell on the American market.

That is why the Daytona had a style that looked more like a Corvette than a Ferrari. It has a long pointy front end, pop up headlights and round tail lights. It also has chrome bumpers similar to those on the Corvette C3.

  1. ZIL 114

They modeled all those Russian limousines and luxury sedans after American cars. So, in the case of the ZIL 114, the role model was the Lincoln Continental. The Russians copied the front and the silhouette of this cool sedan for their ZIL 114.

However, the ZIL didn’t use suicide doors and the rest of the features. They presented the car in 1967 and produced it until 1978. Many high ranking government officials used this car.

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