Tinted car windows are not a hype of the 21st century, they were already used since the 11th century for the purdah, which means the seclusion of women. Purdah found its way thru India by the conquest of the Islam. The Royal Muslim as well as Hindu Maharanis lived quite unseen. Outside of their zenana (secluded women’s apartments) they were moved around in different kinds of vehicles like palanquins and (animal dawn) carriages, that were shuttered with heavy curtains. And of course later also cars with blinded windows… that we still use today!
Traveling in purdah wasn’t very easy… Continue reading
First some background! Maharaja Tukojirao Holkar III (1890-1978) ruled the Princely State of Indore (9,519 square miles with 19 gun salutes) from 1903 to 1926. He was already quite an unconventional Maharaja and one of the first in Central India who, around 1906, acquired an automobile! He always purchased (lots of) cars for a reason… for some kind of a utilitarian purpose. He was just more of a practical collector than a petrol head.
Now about that futuristic master dandy, which he really was… Continue reading
Most of the glorious coachbuilders we can remember have disappeared, but Pininfarina is of course still very much alive (sadly not literally, because big boss Battista Farina as well as his son Sergio aren’t there anymore)! We know Pininfarina for its magnificent classic designs and the Italian design house continues to come up with highly refined designs, like for instance the BMW Pininfarina Gran Lusso Coupé, also thanks to their expensive windtunnel and R&D that I briefly discussed in the intro.Carrozzeria Pininfarina is an independent Italian car design house and coachbuilder in Cambiano, Italy. It was founded by Battista ‘Pinin’ Farina in 1930. A fun little fact about the name ‘Pinin’ is that… Continue reading
That opened the door to what came next. In the late 1940s, Ghia, one of Turin’s
oldest coachbuilders, had established a close working relationship with Chrysler in the US. That effort was led by Ghia design chief Mario Boano and commercial director Luigi Segre, but, not too long after the Conrero project entered the Ghia works, Boano had a serious row with Segre. Boano and his son, Gian Paolo, left Ghia to form their own carrozzeria, so Segre contacted Savonuzzi, and overnight Ghia had a new design and technical director. They organized a small production run using the shape created for Conrero, calling it the Supersonic. First used with spectacular effect on nine Fiat 8Vs, a one-off Aston and Jaguar followed.
Ghia’s next project was the… Continue reading