“Spider cars”, the status symbol of the post-war economic boom

Silent protagonist of Dino Risi's movie Il Sorpasso, the Italian myth of the convertible sports car soon reached many other countries and became the vehicle that best represented the freedom after the war. And certain English models are unforgettable. 

The four wheels simply run in the blood of the post-war roadsters, which in Italy – where they come from – where named as “spiders”. The name of the “spider cars” comes from a specific type of horse-drawn carriage used in the 1800s, that was called “spider” because of the contrast between its large wheels and its small body that made it look like the eight-legged insect. Despite its English origins, this name is mostly used in Italy, and it's such a pervasive term that in other countries it's used to refer to Italian open two-seat cars. Anywhere else, these cars are called roadsters of even spyders – but we're still talking about a kind of car that is both a status symbol and a dream, a desire for freedom, happiness (because you need it to be sunny outside to drive it), and the feeling of the wind through your hair. And that's right during the post-war euphoria of the '50s that spider cars became a point of reference. So, let's start our journey right there, in the '50s, with the Lancia Aurelia B24 designed by Pininfarina and featured in the movie Il Soprasso. Next to Vittorio Gassman and Jean-Louis Trintignant, this car is the co-star of Dino Risi's movie, and it symbolizes the Italian economic miracle as well as the wellbeing and freedom of movement and expression that characterized that period. 

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