One of the great geniuses of car design, Giorgetto Giugiaro, has announced his retirement after selling the remaining stake in his Italdesign Giugiaro styling house to Audi.
Audi acquired 90.1 per cent of Italdesign in 2010, Giorgetto retaining the rest for himself and his son, Fabrizio. On June 28, Audi bought out the remaining stake and Giorgetto and Fabrizio resigned from the comapny’s board.
Italdesign said in a statement that Giorgetto, 76, is leaving “to dedicate more time to his personal interests.” The statement also said the company will create an extra 250 jobs by the end of the year. Alongside cars, Italdesign also does industrial and product design.
Giorgetto leaves an incredible legacy. His own work focused mostly on mass-market cars, bringing a design flair that was rarely seen at that end of the market. He did his fair share of supercars, too.
He started his career at Bertone in 1960, where he penned the Alfa Romeo Giulia Sprint GT, Aston Martin DB4 GT ‘Jet’ and BMW 3200CS. He joined Ghia in ’66 before setting up Italdesign in ’68.
Through the Seventies and Eighties, Giorgetto drew many seminal cars: the Alfa Romeo Alfasud, BMW M1, DeLorean, Fiat Uno and Punto, Lancia Delta, Lotus Esprit, and the Volkswagen Golf, to name but a few. He pretty much invented the people carrier as well, with his Lancia Megagamma concept of 1978. It wasn’t at all surprising when he was named Car Designer of The Century in 1999.
There were a fair few duds in Giorgetto’s portfolio, as well. Every Daewoo launched from 1996 to 2004, for instance. And the FSO Polonez, various Hyundais, and Yugos. But he didn’t have anything to do with the Morris Ital. Though the restyled Marina was named after his company, in-house designer Harris Mann was responsible for the new look. Italdesign simply worked up the production designs.
Click through the gallery below to see some of Giugiaro’s greatest (and not so great) designs.
By Only Motors