Piloti’s First Driving Shoe For Women Has Been Added To The Petrolicious Shop
Piloti has just launched its first driving shoe designed specifically for women, the Vittoria, and we’re happy to carry the new sneakers in the Petrolicious Shop. A versatile design that’s at home in plenty of places that aren’t pedal boxes, these shoes are comfortable, cleanly styled options equally suited for long road trips or brief and spirited drives closer to home. Made by hand in Portugal with Italian leather and suede, the Vittoria incorporates Piloti’s expertise in performance footwear with a modern, minimalist look for a shoe that’s suited for every kind of drive.
While these shoes are just another step in the company’s tradition of making high-quality footwear for driving enthusiasts, the Vittoria is the first time Piloti has constructed a shoe solely for women, so we reached out to Piloti’s Managing Director Stephanie Brooklyn to get some insight into the project.
Petrolicious: The Vittoria is Piloti’s first women’s shoe. Why now?
Stephanie Brooklyn: The short answer is that it’s about time. When I joined the company in 2017, it was one of the first questions that I asked myself. There are so many women in the world of motorsport, from mechanics to drivers to businesswomen, and I felt that we needed a product that was able to offer these women the technical performance of a driving shoe, all while maintaining the proper aesthetic. We have been so busy the last two years, making big changes to our brand and products, so we started the design and development of the Vittoria as soon as we could. But for me and the team, it was more important that we got the shoe right, as opposed to rushing and releasing a product that wasn’t ready.
P: How long has the Vittoria been in the making?
SB: About a year and a half. It’s crazy to think back to when I reviewed the first sketch to now, where I have a pair on my feet. It’s been a very rewarding process, and a lot of hard work from the entire team.
P: How was this project personal for you?
SB: Like so many women involved in the motorsport and automotive world, there wasn’t an appropriate shoe that fit my needs. I found myself wearing smaller men’s Piloti shoes and they just didn’t fit properly (there are a lot of structural differences between men and women’s feet). I figured there had to be so many more women just like me, and they deserved a product that was designed especially with the female foot in mind. From a business perspective, I’m so proud of our team. This has been a very new product from the ground up and I hope (know!) it will become a defining moment for the brand.
P: Where did the name Vittoria come from?
SB: Vittoria means “victory” in Italian. The name was inspired by all of the women around the world that are blazing trails in motorsport, business and beyond. We hope this is a victory for them, as much as it is for Piloti.
P: Are there specific fabrics/technologies in the Vittoria that are not found in any of the men’s shoes?
SB: Before we make any product (men’s or women’s) we sit down together to understand what the customer is looking for. We then make design decisions that best fit those criteria.
For our Vittoria shoe, we wanted to make a versatile product that offered all day comfort, excellent driving performance, and that looked great. It’s made from a combination of goat leather and suede, which is soft and molds to the foot. We then added laser perforations for breathability and ventilation – it also makes the shoe a bit sportier and athletic. The interior of the shoe is a combination of soft neoprene for added comfort, and ONSTEAM™ antimicrobial lining to manage/control moisture and odor. Finally, the sole is made from a soft PU with rubber inserts, to balance both all day comfort and durability, and there is a small steel shank in the sole to provide torsional support.
Some of these technologies you can find in other Piloti styles, but for example we don’t use goat suede and neoprene on our men’s shoes right now. It’s not because they are materials that are specific to women’s footwear, they just happen to work well for this style.
P: What else makes the Vittoria special?
SB: It’s one of a kind. In the shoe market, there is a lot to choose from, and so many products that are similar to others. We believe that our Vittoria is truly a differentiator and we hope that the women who wear them feel as unique and special as the product itself.
P: Can we assume from this product launch that a larger assortment of women’s shoes is coming? Maybe a performance shoe is in the works?
SB: One step at a time… but what I can say is that we are always listening to our customers and want to have an assortment that fits every utility.
P: Is there anything else you want our audience to know?
SB: We love hearing from you! We read each and every comment, and do our absolute best to bring you products that you’ll love. The team and I are really looking forward to hearing your thoughts about the Vittoria, and the rest of 2019 collection that’ll be coming over the next few months.