in ,

Dodge Serra Specter, a story without a closed end

After the attempts of Ibero Italiana de Carrocerías to seduce Barreiros with multiple versions of the Dart by Pedro Serra, the Barcelona bodybuilder surprised in 1968 with this version full of American airs.

Beyond his work as a coachbuilder, Pedro Serra showed a clear entrepreneurial impetus embodied with greater or lesser success. In fact, during his career, he even became interested in pioneering the installation of air conditioning in cars.

Due to this, already in the fifties it acquired various accessories from the Frigi King house, responsible for air conditioning any vehicle after being installed in kit form. However, that did not go well due to the great power stolen from the engine by said mechanism.

Something assumable for certain models of great displacement but, after all, decisive downwards when we talk about cars with a national invoice. Besides, Pedro Serra can be traced as a businessman dealing with AYACSA or SEAT. In short, we are talking about someone who, beyond his design and workshop work, found real motivation by making deals in the promising automotive sector of the time.

In this sense, one of the most interesting business pages in the life of Pedro Serra was his participation in Ibero Italiana de Carrocerías SA Founded in Barcelona in 1966 by Alejandro De Tomaso and the pilot Enrique Coma Cros, this had the bodybuilder as a shareholder. Of those, he was already well known in Barcelona and, moreover, especially motivated by the projects that this new company had in relation to Barreiros.

And it is that, just as Moretti or Pininfarina did with Fiat in Italy, Ibero Italiana de Carrocerías hoped to serve the giant from Villaverde when making special series from popular models. In fact, in this sense his best-known project was that of the SIMCA 100 De Tomaso. Something that, at least for a year, was in the limits of the possible due to the personal wish of Eduardo Barreiros. Aware of how well a sports version of the utility vehicle manufactured in Villaverde since 1965 could sell.

Moreover, there is evidence of the ephemeral but existing contacts between Barreiros and Pininfarina. All this with the idea of ​​creating a coupe similar to the one Bertone had made on the French SIMCA 1000 a few years earlier. Nevertheless, increasingly focused on the intense pace set by its association with Chrysler, the Galician businessman abandoned those whims in order to fold sails on a range little given to experiments.

This convertible version of the Dart was one of the models with which an attempt was made to tempt Barreiros. Here we see it in the Salón de Barcelona.

Thus, the idea of ​​a Barreiros modified by De Tomaso was parked forever. In fact, after all that, the only thing that came out clear was a preparation kit of which only a few units were marketed. Undoubtedly, one of the greatest rarities not only in the history of the SIMCA 1000, but also in the very history of motorsports in Spain. In addition, Ibero Italiana de Carrocerías also tried to seduce Barreiros with two transformations on the Dodge Dart signed by Pedro Serra.


Thanks to his bodywork work, Pedro Serra was not a simple shareholder in the company founded by De Tomaso y Cros. Far from it, two of the three projects with which it tried to attract Barreiros were shaped by him. At this point, and in parallel to what was being tried to do with the hypothetical sports version of the SIMCA 1000, Ibero Italiana de Carrocerías devised new variants based on the Dodge Dart 66.

To begin with -and since the Convertible version already existed in the United States- a convertible with an electric top was created. Quite well resolved in its transformation from four to two doors and, furthermore, exhibited at the Barcelona Salon in 1966. Likewise, in a more practical and discreet tone Pedro Serra also converted a 66 Dart into a station wagon which, by the way, included details such as the traditional wood panels traditionally applied to these models in America.

Snapshot in which we see the presentation of the Specter at the Barcelona Salon.

However, all that was parked before the refusal of Barreiros. Furthermore, while the convertible version was rejected outright -despite the interest shown by some dealers- the station wagon was finally made by the Villaverde factory with its own design. In short, despite showing some initial interest, Barreiros ended up rejecting everything proposed by Ibero Italiana de Carrocerías.

However, in Pedro Serra's mind there was still the idea of ​​carrying out transformations using the Dodge Dart. Not surprisingly, thanks to the convertible and the station wagon, the Barcelona bodybuilder had acquired a great deal of knowledge about this model. This way, At the 1968 Barcelona Salon he presented the so-called Specter. Defined by a front very similar to the Plymouth Barracuda of that same year, Pedro Serra devised here a line clearly inspired by American sports cars.

Of course, in the smooth and prolonged fall of its rear window, it dispensed with muscular volumes, thus seeking a more sober appearance. However, going into subjective considerations, we must indicate how the front area is much better resolved than the rear. What's more, in some photographs a clear lack of harmony with the whole is perceived due to the extensive drop of the rear, conditioned by a large overhang.

Anyway, the look of the Dodge Specter was really eye-catching. In addition, it had the attraction of being a unique piece with which even Eduardo Barreiros himself allowed himself to be photographed. In fact, such was its success that Pedro Serra managed to sell it during the Barcelona Salon itself. From now on the track of this vehicle moves to Bilbao. A city in which, for years, the track has been lost without any concrete resolution. Who knows, maybe it's still stored in some old warehouse. We will remain vigilant.

What do you think?

avatar photo

Written by Miguel Sánchez

Through the news from La Escudería, we will travel the winding roads of Maranello listening to the roar of the Italian V12; We will travel Route66 in search of the power of the great American engines; we will get lost in the narrow English lanes tracking the elegance of their sports cars; We will speed up the braking in the curves of the Monte Carlo Rally and we will even get dusty in a garage while rescuing lost jewels.

Subscribe to the newsletter

Once a month in your mail.

Thanks a lot! Do not forget to confirm your subscription through the email that we have just sent you.

Something has gone wrong. Please try again.

60.2 kHappy fans
2.1 kFollowers
3.4 kFollowers
3.8 kFollowers