Saab Designer Profile – Giorgetto Giugiaro

Posted on 24. Feb, 2008 by in 2000-2009, Designers

giugaro.jpgGiorgetto Giugiaro born in Cuneo Italy on August 7th, 1938. Giugiaro began working with Saab-Scania on the Saab 9000 body design in 1978. The conceptual designs that Guigiaro designed, continued until 1981. The Saab 9000 was finally shown to the public in may of 1984, however the engine for the 9000 was shown a year earlier in Geneva in March of 1983.

The Saab 9000 design followed the first project that Giugaro also designed as part of this venture which was known as the Saab Lancia 600 project, that was sold only in Sweden.

Today, Giugaro works as a product designer and head of Giugiaro Design in Italy. I highly suggest you visit his website.

Here is a quote from the former Saab 9000 designer himself:

“Right from the moment I started my career as a car designer, I was convinced that an enormous opportunity would have slipped away had I not transferred, within the sphere of product design, the complex, albeit effective, automotive design methodology to other mass production sectors.”

– Giorgetto Giugiaro


Below is a nice writeup from

Giorgetto Giugiaro, born in Cuneo, Italy in 1938 is one of the great automobile and industrial designers of the 20th century. He is credited with designing more cars than anyone else, and these include some of the best-selling and most beautiful automobiles ever produced.

Giugiaro grew up with art and design: His grandfather Luigi painted church frescoes. His father, Mario, made decorative religious art and oil paintings while he was growing up near Cuneo in northwest Italy. In Turin, Giugiaro studied art by day and technical design by night. In June 1955, some of his many car sketches were mounted in an end-of-the-year school exhibition. Dante Giacosa, Fiat’s technical director, saw the talent behind his work and hired him three months later. He had just turned 17.

Although producing some very interesting early work, Giugiaro found it difficult to grow at Italy’s largest auto manufacturer and towards the end of 1959 he joined Bertone. There he penned some of his most important works: the Alfa Romeo Giulia GT, the Fiat 850 Spider, as well as the Testudo and Canguro prototypes.

At the end of 1965, when Ghia had been written off as being on the road to folding, Giugiaro became head of Ghia’s design office in a surprise move that shocked the design world. His first works were studies for Volkswagen and Isuzu, and the four cars presented at the 1966 Motor Show: Maserati Ghibli, De Tomaso Pampero, De Tomaso Mangusta and Fiat Vanessa. The Maserati Ghibli and the De Tomaso Pampero were regarded instantly as masterpieces, and launched Ghia once again in to the spotlight. His work for Isuzu was very important at this time and the Japanese manufacturer built a large number of Ghia designs.

Hungry to establish his own company, ItalDesign made its debut at the 1968 Turin Motor Show with the Manta prototype. At Italdesign Giugiaro styled over 80 production cars and numerous prototypes and concepts. Various Giugiaro-designed automobiles, including the 1974 Golf, 1980 Fiat Uno and the 1993 Fiat Punto were the most-sold automobiles of their respective production years.

It is interesting to note that Giugiaro began the “folded paper” era of the 1970s, where cars took on sharp edges, like his Lotus Esprit, Volkswagen Golf, Hyundai Pony and the Lancia Delta. He also introduced the trend toward “tall-body” design with Fiat Panda and Uno which have a great influence on modern car design since the early 1980s.

Beginning in the 1970s, ItalDesign extended it’s scope to product design including cameras for Nikon, sewing machines for Necchi, and watches for Seiko. His daughter Laura is managing director of the family-controlled Italdesign-Giugiaro SpA, and his son Fabrizio has taken over the styling and prototype studio. Recent work includes the Lexus GS300 and the Daewoo lineup.

Back to list of Honored Designers


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

No comments.

Leave a Reply

Production Concept