Matra - Laser
The Michelotti Matra Laser is a one-off design-study built by Studio Michelotti of Italy in 1971. (Studio Michelotti had connections with numerous Japanese manufacturers and is famous for having penned the Prince Skyline Sports and Contessa 1300 for Hino). The Matra Laser was shown at the 1971 Geneva Show and after making some minor design changes, it was displayed at the Montreal Auto Salon in 1972. The car was used to show the studio's design capabilities, and was built on the French made mid-engine sports car Matra M530 chassis and its components. The styling of the Laser can be considered to be a typical design of the '70s Italian Supercar featuring sharp wedge shaped lines. Its overall height is extremely low at 1,080mm. To aid body strength and to channel the cooling system, it has a very wide side sill, and as was popular at the time with Michelotti's design studies, this car features gull-wing doors. Although it is already 38 years old the car looks futuristic because of the gull wing doors. This car was part of an automotive museum collection until the late 1990's but then it has suddenly disappeared and no one knew its whereabouts. The car was so special for the Michelottis that the founder Giovanni's son, Edouard Michelotti, tried to track it down for years but it couldn't be found. Well, now the car has been discovered after about 10 years in hiding and is displayed at the 2nd Tokyo Concours D'Elegance.