The Ace of Spades Study by Karmann was presented at the 45th International Motor Show. It is a four-seater coupe, which it's wedge-shaped body and large window panes along with a futuristic cockpit with drum-shaped instrument panels and narrow sporty steering wheel.
The coupe was based on an Audi 80 and was created with help of Giorgio Giugiaro. Next to the unusual shape the car body. other details cause a great deal of discussion.
Although Audi was enjoying the fiscal stability provided by new parent Volkswagen, it was Karmann who approached Italdesign with the idea of creating a concept coupe built off the Audi 80. At the very least, the company had a vested interest in the project -- should VW/Audi brass enjoy the proposal, Karmann felt it could attain a contract to mass-produce the car.
Dubbed the Asso di Picche (Italian for Ace of Spades), the finished product looked nothing like the humble 80 it was built upon. Giugiaro envisioned a sleek, wedge-shaped coupe with a slender nose, long hood, and a short, angular fastback. The show car looked nothing like any other Audi model at the time -- arguably, the only visual link to the 80 was the front fascia, which sported a full-width grille housing large quad headlamps and the fabled four-ring logo.
VW executives liked the car, but didn't push it into production exactly like Karmann hoped. Instead, it called upon Giugiaro to pen the first-generation Scirocco, which bears a striking resemblance to the Asso di Picche; gaping grille and all. Lucky for Karmann, it found a way to score a contract building the bodies for the little sport coupe.
Giugiaro eventually extrapolated the Asso di Picche into a line of "Ace" concepts. The Asso di Quadri (Ace of Clubs), shown in 1976, was built from a BMW 320i, and bears a remarkable resemblance to the second-generation Scirocco. The Asso di Fiore, unveiled in 1979, was a dead ringer for the 1982 Isuzu Piazza/Impulse.