The Alfa Romeo BAT, not so far from Gotham City

Alfa Romeo Bat

Alfa Romeo Bat 9 (1955)

Never stop at first impressions. Although these three Alfa Romeo cars were named “Bat”, they have nothing to do with the Batmobile and the superhero invented by Bob Kane and Bill Finger in 1939. The BAT 5, Bat 7 and Bat 9 were named after the acronym “Berlinetta Aerodinamica Tecnica”, and while they look like something Gotham City’s masked knight may drive around at night, they were simply meant to cut through air as easily as possible: that was Alfa Romeo’s request when it commissioned them to Carrozzeria Bertone between 1953 and 1955.

The three models – which indeed flaunt an extremely low drag coefficient – were designed by Florence-born Franco Scaglione (1916-1993), supervised by Giuseppe Bertone (1914-1997) himself.

These extraordinary concept cars are now showcased, with their typical curved tail fins, at Danville’s Blackhawk Museum, California.

Some say Gotham City is not that far from there.

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June 5, 2014