Travel: Pininfarina’s History Makes Us Excited For the Future

Pininfarina’s History Makes Us Excited For the Future

Avatar By Jacopo Villa
June 24, 2015

Photography by Federico Bajetti

85 years of designing some of the most iconic and “Italian” cars ever is a huge achievement, and deserves a long and heartfelt applause. If we still enjoy the sight of classic Ferraris, Cisitalias, Lancias, Peugeots, and more, much of it is thanks to Pininfarina. Sure, it didn’t design every car in the world, but those that came from its factory in Grugliasco left a mark in automotive history.

Celebrations were held in the Castello del Valentino, one of Turin’s most iconic and significant locations. Despite financial troubles and the possible acquisition of the company by Indian Mahindra, the celebrations made Pininfarina look strong and proved it is still very much capable of producing mind-melting concept cars.

Looking at the Pininfarina personnel proudly working on the cars, one just feels the attachment they still have to the designs the company helped bring to life. There’s a strong dignity in that.

In one place, we saw gathered a Ferrari 212 Export Cabriolet, the first ever Ferrari made by Pininfarina, which was accompanied by other Ferraris, including the P4/5 and the 4-door Pinin, the Cisitalia 202, Lancias, Alfa Romeos, a Nash-Healey, Peugeots, and Fiats. Most on display were one-off cars or rare models, like the Ferrari 275 GTB/4 “short nose” alloy-bodied GT and the Testarossa Spider; seeing them in one place was a truly mesmerizing experience.

It is a shame that no cars are currently coming out from the factory with such a glorious name—if Pininfarina is still and quiet for much longer, I believe an empty hole will be left inside every car enthusiast.

What Pininfarina has done through the years helped set the benchmark of design for automobiles. All the cars designed by it have a distinctive, neat, straight, simple-yet-elegant design that is instantly identifiable. Its design style can be compared to a classic men’s suit, always in fashion.

Take the Cisitalia 202, for example: no other car had the same proportions, and now, it inspires feelings of maturity, elegance and creativity. It has the perfect Pininfarina proportions, not aggressive, yet very emotional. A masterpiece.

How is it possible that a company that created many icons with people like Aldo Brovarone, Battista, and Sergio Pininfarina could stop making cars? I prefer not to see these things under the light of financial papers and a worker’s protest.

For one day, everything that made this coachbuilder famous was on display from the vibrant cornice of Turin. It has to be like this—nothing else would be fitting—and we’ll all hope the company will have many more designs for the future.

Forza Pininfarina! 

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Dennis White
Dennis White

The 456? Well, I guess it is in the eye of the beholder! I would argue that the Maser QP was the most beautiful 4-door coupe ever designed and far superior to the current in-house design.

Guitar Slinger
Guitar Slinger

Pininfarina’s history [ at least most of it minus a few serious misses like the Testarossa 512’s etc ] I love . Pininfarina’s present hasn’t had a design worthy of the name Pininfarina since the Ferrari 456 – Is is debt up to its ears – Has reduced its workforce by more than 65\% – Has terminated all production [ a major source of profit in the past ] – Hasn’t seen an ‘ honest ‘ profit in over a decade [ restructuring debt does not constitute a profit ] – Is constantly on the edge of being sold off… Read more »

Jacopo Villa
Jacopo Villa


I know well the reality. If you had been at the event you would have understood why I wrote this. Everyone always talks about finance all the time and how Pininfarina is about to be sold: I want everyone to focus a moment on the cars instead of money.

As fas as I know Pininfarina was able to produce awesome cars ( like the 458; yes I do love it). I always liked Pininfarina’s modern design: I hope thigs will be positive in the future.



Guitar Slinger
Guitar Slinger

Jacopo – Message understood . I guess its just hard for me having owned several Pinin designed cars over the years to separate the present state of the company from its finances despite the beauty you’ve presented in the article . As far as modern Pinin design is concerned … in my eyes and opinion they’ve lost the plot of designing elegant and stunningly beautiful cars that could be recognized from a mile away instead adapting the present as I call it .. Cosmic Jellybean school of design that currently pervades the contemporary so called Super/Hyper/ Exotic over homogenized market… Read more »