This Model T and its Siblings Are Built By the Same Company Behind the Apple iPhone
Cars are getting more and more advanced every year, leaving them more dependent on electronics and technology. With this increasingly blurry line dividing the world of technology like laptops and smartphones and the world of cars, more tech companies are having a go at making their first automobiles. Hon Hai Technology Group, the owner of Foxconn, debuted three new electric vehicles at the Hon Hai Tech Day 2021 event. Those electric vehicles are the Model C, Model E, and the ambitiously named Model T.
Pininfarina Wants To Take On Rolls-Royce and Bentley by Finally Becoming Its Own Car Brand
Pininfarina is finally stepping out of the shadows. After years of serving as the go-to design house by some of the biggest automakers in the world, the Italian company has announced plans to become a full-fledged luxury electric car maker. The announcement was made by Pininfarina CEO Paulo Pininfarina, who hinted at the 2018 Geneva Motor Show that the company may finally have the capacity to bring to life founder Battista Farina’s dream of turning the company he started into a stand-alone car company.
The Mahindra Group, through its subsidiaries Tech Mahindra Limited and Mahindra & Mahindra, has just finalized a deal to secure a controlling stake in Pininfarina S.p.A., considered as one of the most revered automotive and industrial design houses in the world. Financial aspects of the deal have yet to be disclosed, but according to a statement released by the Indian conglomerate, Tech Mahindra and M&M will receive 76.06 percent of Pininfarina shares from incumbent shareholder PincarS.r.l. at a price of € 1.1 per share. The transaction and subsequent transferring of shares will be received by “JVCo”, a joint venture company between Tech Mahindra and M&M. 60 percent of the new company will be owned by Tech Mahindra with the remaining 40 percent going to M&M.
Once the transaction is completed, an open offer for the remaining ordinary shares of Pininfarina will commence. The open offer will come at the same purchase price paid for the shares that are held by Pincar. Likewise, a rights issue to infuse funds into the company is also expected to take place by the end of 2016.
The deal to acquire controlling interest in Pininfarina may seem odd on the surface given the different markets the companies are in. But such is the case in business. We’ve seen something happen like this before and we’ll see it again. For Tech Mahindra, being in the fold allows it to tap into the iconic Italian designer’s expertise in product conceptualization, as well as its design and outfits, which is regarded as one of the best in the world. Pininfarinar’s long-standing relationships with some of the finest marquees in the auto industry also gives Tech Mahindra a new avenue to pursue in the event it decides to embark on that possibility.
Despite ceding a majority of its shares to Tech Mahindra and M&M, Pininfarina will continue to operate as its own company. It’s listing at the Milan Stock Exchange will also remain active and the company’s management team, led by chairman Paolo Pininfarina, will continue to serve in its capacity.
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Last month, we reported that shareholders and creditors of Italian auto designer Pininfarina had yet to come to a sales agreement with it’s potential buyer. The problem was that potential purchaser Mahindra and Mahindra – the largest SUV producer in the Indian market – was proceeding cautiously. That wasn’t much of a surprise, considering Pininfarina hasn’t made a profit for the better part of the last 12 years. Now, nearly a month later, we’ve learned that an agreement may be reached as early as the end of this week.
The sales negotiations between the two companies, shareholders and creditors have been private, but our sources have been in touch with insiders who spoke behind the curtain of anonymity. The final details left to iron out are the final purchase price of Pininfarina and some issues related to Pininfarina’s cesspool of constantly increasing debt. As of this morning, Il Sole 24 Ore – an Italian newspaper – reported that sales negotiations between the two companies were nearing a close and, after surging 11 percent, Pininfarina’s shares have also been halted. We’re not sure what the outcome will be, but read on for more information.
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Italian design house Pininfarina has been in financial trouble for most of the last decade, leading to the end of vehicle production in 2011. After years of living in the red, it was looking like a purchase by Mahindra and Mahindra would keep the designer in business, but shareholders and creditors weren’t able to come to terms on the sale.
It sounds like the major issue is that the Indian automaker is being "very cautious" while attempting to buy the troubled company "at the lowest possible price." This isn’t exactly a positive sign for the deal to go through. Reuters is reporting that recent talks have been put on hold until September, and while there are still hopes of the company being acquired by Mahindra, Pininfarina is also said to be looking at other options.
With this life-saving injection of cash still up in the air, the report goes on to say that Pininfarina is looking to create a contingency plan if the company needs to soldier on as a standalone business. No details were given, but Pininfarina has been warding off insolvency since 2008.
Things haven’t look much better for Pininfarina so far in 2015, as it recently reported a net loss of €4.4 million ($4.8 million) through the first half of this year alone and has taken on an additional €7.9 million ($8.7 million) of debt raising its total current debt to €52.7 million ($57.8 million) during the same six-month period.
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Mahindra, one of India’s largest automobile manufacturers, is reportedly in talks to buy Italian car design firm Pininfarina. That’s the word from Bloomberg, quoting "people familiar with the matter," which claim the Indian company is closing in on the purchase of Italy’s famous design house. Founded in 1930, Pininfarina has posted losses in 10 of the past 11 years as it struggled with debt. Despite numerous attempts to restructure debts, Pininfarina ended all mass automotive production in late 2010 with the conclusion of the contract to build the Alfa Romeo Brera and Spider.
Pininfarina still cooperates with a number of carmakers though, including Mahindra. The Italians had worked on the Indian company’s Halo electric sports car concept shown in 2014 and currently provides input on SUV development. Mahindra declined to comment on takeover talks, but Pininfarina’s shares surged 26 percent Wednesday, the biggest gain in almost four years, since the rumor emerged. Mahindra stock also gained 1.5 percent. Representatives of the two firms have been negotiating for weeks, but talks could still fall apart, the report added. Should Mahindra buy Pininfaria, the Italian house could help revamp the Ssangyong SUV brand, which the Indians purchased in 2011.
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Legendary Italian coachbuilder, Pininfarina, is apparently set to go back to its old stomping grounds, eyeing a return to coach building now that its brief and ultimately unsuccessful flirtation with being a volume automaker is all but over.
According to Automotive News, the legendary design house is keen on the idea of building a select number of cars for its clients, the same way it did in past years with one-off models like James Glickenhaus’ P4/5 and theRolls-Royce Drophead Coupe Hyperion.
The company initially wanted to become its own auto brand, but those dreams were squashed after it ran into financial trouble, prompting it to restructure its business and think of alternative ways to keep the company afloat.
It turns, that ’alternative’ means returning to its roots, something CEO Silvio Pietro Angori told Automotive News is the company’s objective moving forward. What it means for its plan to produce a handful of the Sergio Concept remains to be seen, but from the way the company sounds these days, the cost of doing that, coupled with the risk of selling models priced at $2 million each, far outweighs any acclaim it would have received.
But not all is lost, fans of Pininfarina. The company isn’t going away anytime soon. From the looks of things, it’s just going to return to the strategy that made it one of the most famous coachbuilders in the world.
Click past the jump to read about the Pininfarina Sergio Concept
A couple of months after word spread that Pininfarina was thinking of building a limited production run of the Sergio Concept, it looks like there was more to those rumors than anybody previously thought.
According to Car and Driver, the Italian coach builder is really serious about building a production model of the Sergio Concept. The caveat is that it will be limited to just around five units. Each of the five vehicles will be built in the company’s headquarters in Turin, Italy.
Here’s the other interesting part about the Sergio Concept. The anticipated €3 million price tag (roughly $3.89 million at the current exchange rates) of the concept may not be as much of a reality after all. If it hits production, it’s still going to cost potential buyers more than a pretty penny, but the updated $2 million price tag is a relative bargain.
Click past the jump to read about the Pininfarina Sergio Concept
When Pininfarina debuted the Sergio Concept at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show, a lot of people thought that the car would only be there as a show car.
But now, it looks like the company is doing an about-face with plans of building a limited number of models, each priced at around €3 million (roughly $3.89 million at the current exchange rates). Pininfarina CEO, Silvio Angori, made the announcement, telling Automotive News Europe that the company is "considering a very limited run of five to six units."
This latest developments comes a surprise to a lot of people considering the rather extreme design of the Sergio, which, in concept guise, won’t meet a lot of European safety standards.
But Pininfarina already has a plan to work around the car’s concept design to make it a street-legal model, including the installation of a windshield to comply with European homologation rules. "We already know how and where to modify the Sergio concept car to make it into a compliant, street-legal model," Pininfarina chief designer, Fabio Filippini, also told Automotive News Europe.
Should Pininfarina succeed in turning the Sergio Concept into a full-fledged road goer, albeit extremely limited model, there’s still that matter of price. Last we checked, €3 million don’t grow on trees and it might be a hard sell, awesome as the car is, to convince somebody to fork over that much money.
Then again, that’s exactly the amount Lamborghini charged for the Veneno hypercar. And all three models are already accounted for.
Sergio Pininfarina, the former chairman of the legendary Italian design firm, Pininfarina, has passed away at age 85 at him home in Turin, Italy on Tuesday.
The Italian design firm formed in 1930 by Sergio’s father, Battista “Pinin” Farina, has designed many of the classic Ferrari’s throughout the decades, with the recently retired 599 GTB Fiorano and the present 458 Italia both being created by the firm.
A host of other Italian cars have also been designed by Pininfarina, including the Alfa Romeo Brera still in production with Pininfarina’s very first mass-produced design being the Alfa Romeo 8C 2300 of 1933. Since then, the company has gone on to bigger and better things, despite the brand having to recently stop producing cars and instead focus solely on the design side of affairs. Other notable companies affiliated with Pininfarina include Cadillac and Volvo.
Sergio Pininfarina took over as chairman of the company in 1966, after his father’s death, and he’s survived by his wife of 60 years and their two children.
Way back in 2008, Pininfarina – a custom coach builder – took a look at the $400K Rolls-Royce Phantom Drophead Coupe Convertible and simply thought it just wasn’t good enough. So Pininfarina took this nearly half-million-dollar machine and created a one-off custom vehicle out of it. The maker then dubbed it the Hyperion, which was taken from an Ancient Greek Titan.
Much like its closest competitor, Bentley, Rolls-Royce has always been one of those car companies that you either loved or hated, mostly due to their gaudy exteriors and even more outlandish pricing. For those that love them, but just need a little something extra, there is no shortage of custom car builders that will customize them to your liking.
Despite the number of custom car builders modifying these ultra-luxury cars, none can touch the uniqueness and flashiness of the Hyperion. Pininfarina took special care to closely integrate a vintage look – taking styling cues from the 1930s and 1940s – with modern technology and feel.
This monster of a luxury car originally debuted at the 2008 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. It then made an appearance at the 2008 Geneva Auto Show before going off to its rightful owner, Roland Hall.
Let’s take a look at how the 2008 Pininferina Hyperion stacks up.
Click past the jump to read the full review.
Pininfarina, the epic auto design and coachbuilding company responsible for the likes of Ferrari and Maserati models, is taking its breakdown to the next level by announcing that it will no longer be producing cars. This news comes about two years after the company sold its auto assembly and painting business. From now on, Pininfarina will only be in the automotive design business.
"Unfortunately we are having to stop our production activities, given the way the car market is. So we are focusing on design and engineering," a Pininfarina spokesman said. Since this decision was made, Pininfarina has already begun laying off the first few of the 127 employees that will be losing their jobs, a task that is costing them a total of 2.9 million euro ($3,900,000 at the current exchange rates)
It didn’t seem as though Pininfarina had much choice in the matter considering their business had plummeted since the beginning of the economic crisis in 2008. There was a time when Pininfarina produced 40,000 vehicles in one year, and in 2010, that number dwindled down to 7,000. Now that their only focus will be on design, we expect to see great things from the Italian company.
Much like its Italian counterpart Fiat, Tata seems to be going against the trend these days by purchasing as many car brands as it can possibly acquire. After having bought Jaguar and Land Rover, the Indian-based manufacturer is already lining up a package to purchase Pininfarina.
The Italian coachbuilder’s parent company, Pincar, recently put its 50.7% stake in the company out on the market and has even hired a bank to field prospective buyers. It seems like an odd pairing but that’s also what everybody said when word spread about Tata’s intent to purchase two luxury British brands in Jaguar and Land Rover – and we all know how that turned out.
Besides, it’s not like Tata and Pininfarina have no history together. If you might recall, the coachbuilders from the land of pizza were the ones who designed the Prima, Tata’s concept car, which appeared at the Geneva Motor Show a few months ago. If Tata does end up purchasing Pininfarina, it only shows that the Indian car makers are poised to become – if they’re not already – serious players in the auto industry for many years to come.
If you’ve lusted after it, it’s likely Pininfarina designed it. But Pininfarina’s main business has usually come from manufacturing cars under contract for larger companies. Right now it produces Alfa Romeo Brera coupe and spider and the Ford Focus coupe-cabriolet, but the volumes are only about a quarter of what was anticipated. This downturn has created an almost €600 million ($835 million) mountain of debt that has made Pininfarina is almost bankrupt.
To keep the creditor away, Pininfarina has struck a deal with its creditor banks that will relinquish family control and stop most car production. In exchange for forgiveness of €180 million of the debt, the Pininfarina family will give 50.6 percent of its shares to creditor banks. The company will also not seek any new production contracts after all contracts run out in 2011. The only vehicles that Pininfarina will produce after that time will be the B Zero electric car project.
This does not mean an end to Pininfarina’s car design business. But transferring control to a holding company from the family that built the business and bares its name cannot be a good thing.
Who thought that the well-known coachbuilder Pininfarina is going to take the „green” way? Well, it’s true! The Italian manufacturer announced that it’s going to produce an electric car in a joint venture with the French manufacturer, Bollore. The new vehicle will be produced in San Giorgio, Italy due to the fact that the production of the Alfa Romeo Spider and Brera will be moved from San Giorgio to Bairo.
The plant will be modified in order to make place for the new production line of the electric vehicle. The yet-unnamed car will be launched as a concept in October, at the Paris Auto Show while the production version will be unveiled in March 2009 at the Geneva Auto Show. According to Pininfarina CEO Sergio Angori, some pre-production units will be released by the end of 2009 while the production vehicles will be released after September 2010.
The well-known design work company, Pininfarina, decided to make its work famous also outside. They have plans for opening a Research, Design and Engineering Center in Pune, India before the end of 2008. Just some weeks ago during 2008 Auto China show in Beijing, Pininfarina presented its newest design work, the Maserati Gran Turismo S.
It seems that the plan for the Research, Design and Engineering Center is also backed by Tata Motors, who signed a letter of intention to take a minority stake in the center and to place contracts with it. “This agreement witnesses the great attention Pininfarina is dedicating to an emerging and highly developing market such as the Indian one” declares Andrea Pininfarina, Chairman and CEO of Pininfarina S.p.A. .
Pininfarina makes great design cars. We all agree that! But this doesn’t mean they don’t have troubles! They do! And big ones! Reason why the company today announced it will propose to its shareholders a 100-million-euro capital increase to reduce its growing debts. The move means that the Pininfarina family will lose its majority in the Italian car design company and coachbuilder. The family currently controls 55 percent of Pininfarina’s voting shares.
The Pininfarina family will underwrite part of the capital increase and also will rely on the support of new investors, such as French battery specialist Vincent Bollore.
In December, Pininfarina announced it will build electric cars with Bollore beginning in 2010.
After the capital increase, the Pininfarina family will remain the main shareholder of the company, but with a diluted share.
A company spokesman told Automotive News Europe that it is too soon to speculate the size of the family’s share after the recapitalization is completed. Last year, Pininfarina’s consolidated net loss increased to 114.9 million euros, compared with 21.9 million euros in the previous year. It revenues increased by 13.8 percent to 670.4 million euros.
Pininfarina is one of the company with the biggest lost this year: net loss increased in the first nine months to 39.1 million euro from 16.3 million euro in the same period last year. This is why the company is looking for new partners and is preparing a new industrial and financial plan with the help of Roland Berger.