The Italian styling house has built some of the prettiest Ferraris, so what can it do with a new partner?
Chances are you haven’t heard about the automotive company Mahindra unless you pay attention to cars with poor crash test records. The company is based in India and makes cars like the Scorpio and a Jeep Wrangler rip-off called the Thar that never make it to the US. However, offerings at Mahindra may go from boring to captivating since it bought Pininfarina, the Italian design house that creates some of the most beautiful cars known to humankind.
Recent creations include the Ferrari 458 Italia and the BMW Gran Lusso Coupe Concept. The design house made a splash at the 2016 Geneva Auto Show with the hydrogen-powered H2 Speed Concept, but now it seems that its green aspirations will go further than we previously anticipated. To help Pininfarina leap into the next chapter, its parent company will work with the Italian designers to make an electric sports car using technology mined from Mahindra’s Formula E involvement. Mahindra’s president's Pravin Shah spoke to Autocar about the project. “Design plays a critical part in designing vehicles in such a way that they are robust yet pollute the least while giving you the thrill that people want in vehicles.”
This may materialize in the form of an H2 Speed-based sports car with an EV powertrain. Even though Pininfarina didn’t have a hand in designing technological revolutions like the Ferrari LaFerrari, Mahindra thinks that combining Pininfarina’s design experience with its own technology can help both companies leap into the future by offering new services. “Pininfarina is an iconic brand,” says Shah. “Mahindra already does critical design and engineering work for manufacturers. We want to provide an ‘art to part’ service, and we can give car makers Pininfarina design as a starting point.” This coincides with what Pininfarina chairman told us and bodes well for both companies. We can't wait to see how the car turns out.