The Red Grifo

Knotty Nawadhinsukh Words by Knotty Nawadhinsukh

As I have oftentimes before, the joy of creating GRAND TOURING MAGAZINE and be considered as part of the world of motoring is not about the cars themselves but more about the people who are as passionate about cars as I am and the meaning that their cars have touched upon their lives and memories.

Young Darren Frank with the first Grifo in his life and his father

Judging by the number of actual clicks to the articles that we featured, I know that a lot of you don’t often spend that much time reading them through as much as I would like you to (don’t ask me how I know, but I DO know). In an age where digital information is being passed on quicker than ever before through social media, it is quite understandable. You see an image or a set of photos of cars that you scan around for a little while—which you may (or may not) press “Like” to them—then move on. There are so many other IMPORTANT things that catch your attention which you must get through during a day now don’t it? Such as a badly photographed image of an iced cappuccino in a plastic cup, a blurred shot of your friend’s cat with a surprised look or the view of a rush hour through a glared windshield—as if we have never seen one before.

Maintenance has been an on-going process since acquiring it in '89

I have been approached by some who asked me why I still make the effort to have a magazine with articles in them for people to read. There are many, they warned, who have about as much attention span as a gnat and tend to give the same merit and approval rating for our hard work for about the same amount of time as a selfie of somebody sweating in gym clothes after a workout that they have a crush on. I reply simply that, “well if I am not doing it, then NOBODY will!” So let’s be clear about one thing; GRAND TOURING was not conceived to please everyone. We do our best to tell stories and provide knowledge about motoring to those who still appreciate them. If some of them tend not to, then I don’t really think it is not our problem that we need to solve.

Elliott Frank stood proud next to his Grifo that he took delivery personally in Italy

While there are those who claimed that the art of storytelling is gradually deteriorating, it doesn’t mean that it has to disappear. One such delightful tale that is worth listening and watching to would be this short film called, “The Red Grifo”. Although produced in 2016, we received it only very recently after it had premiered at a number of festivals and motoring events during this past year or so, from London Motor Film Festival to the Hershey Concours.

Elegant hand-shaped Bertone design

Beautifully produced and shot by a media production company called Popcorn Octane based in Hilton Head Island in South Carolina, the film was directed by Guy Smith and highlights a special bond of the Iso Grifo and its owner Darren Frank. What made it enjoyable was in its simplicity in the method that the story was told from how this particular Sixties Italian grand tourer meant to his father and himself while he was growing up and what the car meant to him now. And while the focus may have been on a personal note between Frank and the Grifo (and with some twists), it also covered very nicely a detailed history of not only the car itself, but also Iso as a car company and the men behind it—some of which I myself had never realised (say thank you, BMW).

Frank oversaw the car himself at shows

So if you can afford about twenty minutes from your daily grind, you might it fruitful to click and have a look. If not, then you can always go back to the photos of somebody’s dinner from seven different angles they had just posted on Instagram…


All images and video provided by Guy Smith & Popcorn Octane

For more information, visit: