MONTGOMERY, Alabama -- Italdesign Giugiaro S.p.A. foresees no problems managing the largest order in its 42-year history: a 375 million euro contract to provide complete design and engineering for eight new models for U.S.-based, Chinese-backed startup automaker Hybrid Kinetic Motors Corp.
“We normally manage up to 10 complete engineering programs a year,” said Enzo Pacella, Italdesign CEO.
The contract with HK Motors calls for eight vehicles based on a common, flexible platform to be designed by Italdesign. The cars will share a common powertrain.
Pacella sees the HK Motors deal as being much easier to manage than eight different projects for eight automakers.
Said Italdesign co-founder Giorgetto Giugiaro: “The contract with HK Motors takes us back to the roots of Italdesign, which was created in 1968 to design and engineer Alfa Romeo's Alfasud model range.”
As part of that deal, Italdesign also designed and engineered Alfa's assembly plant in Pomigliano d'Arco, near Naples, central Italy.
Giorgetto Giugiaro is arguably the premier automotive designer of the past century. He began his career in September 1955 at Fiat. Since then he has designed more than 150 production cars and about 100 concept cars.
Italdesign currently has 975 employees and 800 computer-aided design work stations, mainly based in its headquarters in Moncalieri, 10 miles south of Turin.
Its design work is often made public by its automaker clients, but its engineering work typically remains confidential under terms of its contracts.