The Cars That Money Can’t Buy – Alfa Romeo BAT

Sun 10th Mar 2019

Sometimes your wallet won’t stretch to purchasing your dream motor. But don’t worry too much, there are some cars that even the biggest bank balances can’t buy, the dream cars that will forever remain a dream. These are the concept cars that never go into production.

Alfa Romeo BAT
Okay, let’s get the most obvious reference point out of the way straight away. With a name like BAT, and some unbelievable styling similarities, it is hard to see beyond these concept classics not being the inspiration for future batmobiles in the batman TV series and movies which have delighted millions over the last few decades.

The truth of the matter is though that BAT is nothing more than an acronym of ‘Berlinetta Aerodinamica Tecnica’, a project which was commissioned by Alfa Romeo in the 1950s for the legendary Nuccio Bertone company. The project was initially designed to test the drag coefficients of vehicles at the time and thus Bertone’s Franco Scaglione put together a three-car series of vehicles which pushed the limitations of car design to the edge of what many thought conceivable and in the process produced three of the most beautiful concept cars of all time.

So between 1953 and 1955, the Turin Motor Show got to debut the BAT 5, BAT 7 and BAT 9, three of the most distinctive cars of any era. With a drag coefficient of just 0.19, the cars were capable of achieving 120mph on a modest 1900cc, four-cylinder engine.

After being showcased at the motor shows, the collection was bought by an American entrepreneur, Stanley Harold Arnolt II. ‘Wacky’ Arnolt drove the BAT 5 on the road for many years, but the collection looked doomed when it was split up and the BAT 7 having being raced fell into disrepair, whilst the BAT 9 was used to drag customers into a car dealership in Michigan.

The three ‘BATmobiles’ have been reunited though and restored to their former glories can now be seen at some of the high-end classic car shows across the globe - just not in any Batman movies.