sporting fiats club Thursday, June 13, 2024
Giugaro Intro

Italian Styling with an Edge

Giorgetto Giugiaro
Ital styling was founded by Aldo Mantovani and GG. Together their individual talents made for design genius of the highest order. Together they forged Ital Design into a world renowned styling house. Giugiaro produced the ideas and concepts while Aldo had the ability to 'productionise' them - to make them work in manufacture.

Many ground breaking automotive milestones have come from their combined efforts. Certainly the 'two box' hatchback concept eminated from them. But in addition Giugaro can lay claim to part of the people carrier  concept with the Lancia Megagamma. GG also produced the ‘vertical’ car concept he crafted into the Uno. The same sort of thinking has been continued in the even taller town cars of today.

GG was born in 1938, in Garressio near Cuneo south of Turin. His father was a painter – often restoring frescos and paintings in churches. In the fifties Guigaro attended art college in Turin during the day while studying technical drawing at night. One of his tech. drawing professor’s nephews just happened to be Dante Giacosa – designer of many fifties and sixties Fiats.

So there was a certain fateful inevitability about GG’s first job – in the special projects styling department at Fiat. Fiat is a conservative company – in the fifties not known primarily for its flair - and GG has said these four years were good for his design maturity but also frustrating and stifling too.

In 1959 he left Fiat for Bertone. Early in Spring of 1960 he was called up for National Service. Bertone appears to have been able to get him posted near Turin – and he later said it was in his barracks that he completed his first major design exercise, the Alfa Guila GT.

He stayed at Bertone until 1965 when they were bought out by De Tomaso. He founded Ital Design in 1968, and soon after started on the Alfasud project. This was followed by designs of the first VW Golf, and then the Panda and Uno. The years between were filled with many concept cars and several industrial designs for Fiat trains, Nikkon cameras. Links with mass transport designs have continued through the nineties.

Despite many automotive successes, it was his Delta design that achieved his first European Car of the Year award in 1980. The Delta was styled off the Ritmo/ Strada floor pan. However GG said he was never allowed to see the actual design of the Fiat. Several quite basic additions were requested by Lancia to the original designs – including an additional 80cm added to the boot and a lower rear roof line.

However the results must have been satisfactory. As the basic shape was retained through all the incarnations of Deltas and Integrales right up to the Evo 2. It is one of the truely iconic car shapes of the 20th Century.