Breadvan rides again!


The iconic Ferrari 250 GT SWB-based "Breadvan" from the '60s was the inspiration for this stunning, modern take on the recipe.

"Breadvan"; a word that will resonate with most petrolheads, particularly Ferrari fans. In 1962, a 1961 Ferrari 250 GT SWB was developed, on request of Count Giovanni Volpi, to compete against the then-new Ferrari 250 GTO. The result was an initially awkward-looking car, but one which clearly worked on the racing circuit... It has since become an iconic Ferrari and has regularly been seen at many historic events over the years.

We’ve seen one-off Ferraris over the years, of course, often designed and developed by Ferrari themselves or by a design house such as Pininfarina. However, it is not often that a smaller design consultancy delivers such a result. 

After more than two years of hard work, London-based design consultancy Niels van Roij Design has unveiled their Breadvan Hommage. Based on a Ferrari 550 Maranello, the engine and basic rear-wheel drive layout remain - that means 357 kW and 568 N.m from the 5,5-litre V12 engine. At the time Ferrari claimed a top speed of 320 km/h and a 0-100 km/h in 4,2 seconds. However, that is where the similarities stop.

Look at pictures of the original Breadvan, and you'll note how the finer traditional details of the original racer have cleverly been incorporated into the modern interpretation – it is truly mesmerising. Take a closer look at the air vents in the bonnet, behind the front wheels and those behind the side windows – all celebrating those on the original. 

All four corners of this Breadvan are equipped with Vredestein Ultrac Vorti+ tyres while motorsport-specification and adjustable Koni shocks have been fitted. The latter also harks back to those fitted to the Breadvan in the 1960s. 


Van Roij had the following to say: “It was a complex task to translate the essence of the legendary car into a contemporary design. We intended to be inspired by the original, but ensured we were not limited by it in our creativity. The Breadvan Hommage is a new original.”

This model has been through the entire design process. This means that “a framework was installed on the base car, to which clay was applied.”

Van Roij continues: “A car is a complex, three dimensional sculpture, which has to look right from all angles and under different light circumstances. Like sketching, the clay modelling process is iterative and the Breadvan Hommage was reshaped many times, to get it spot on.”


The cabin continues with the bespoke approach and is also beautifully hand crafted. The transmission tunnel is covered in quilted black leather, while the blue Alcantara carbon-fibre bucket seats grab your attention. An interesting, quirky detail is the analogue clock that reads “che importa” in Italian, meaning “who cares”.

The switchgear, including the toggle switches below the vents, is from milled aluminium and the gated shifter has been placed on a raise block – how alluring!
As Niels says in his promotional video, “there is bliss in searching for detail”.


This company has previously given us the Silver Spectre Shooting Brake. Based on a Rolls-Royce Wraith only seven of these cars were set for production.

But, with this Hommage, only a single unit has been produced for an undisclosed amount. Question is, what is Niels van Roij working on next?

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