Talented designer Ken Okuyama used last weekend’s Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este 2023 in Italy to debut the latest in his series of coach-built specials, the Kode61 Birdcage.
As its name and color scheme clearly indicate, the car is a modern version of the 1960 Maserati Tipo 61 race car, nicknamed the Birdcage due to its complex chassis construction. The frame consisted of a network of 200 thin chrome-molybdenum steel tubes, a design that saved weight while maintaining rigidity.
The Kode61 Birdcage is the first car from a Japanese coachbuilder to be presented in the concept car category at the Villa d’Este Concorso. Okuyama lacked detail, but the door opening style, wheelbase and mid-engine layout all suggest the modern Maserati MC20 is the donor chassis. The wheels are also the same as those found on the Maserati supercar.
The interior, however, looks nothing like the interior of the MC20. It features a complete retro design with a gated manual shifter that rises well above the center console. There are modern bits too, like carbon fiber on the dash and carbon-backed bucket seats.
Okuyama is a former Pininfarina designer responsible for cars such as the Ferrari Enzo and an earlier Maserati Birdcage concept launched in 2005 and based on Maserati’s MC12 supercar chassis. He now runs his own industrial design company, Ken Okuyama Design. The company has produced limited-edition models under the Kode series for the past two decades, including the Kode57 from 2016 and the Kode 0 from 2017.
Like these other creations, the Kode61 birdcage will be built in a small series, with production taking place in Yamagata, Japan.
Pricing was not announced, but other recent Kode cars have cost in the seven figures.