This interior model is set to shape Fiat’s next two electric cars
Turin plant’s 100th anniversary manifests a futuristic cockpit set to inspire the Italian brand’s next electric car
Fiat has revealed a new car-interior concept inspired by its iconic Lingotto factory in Turin, Italy.
Set to shape the brand’s next two electric cars (previously reported by Autocar to be revivals of the Panda and Punto), the interior concept features a series of cues taken from the buiding.
Its oval theme is a riff on the shape of the factory’s rooftop test track. The steering wheel features an integrated speedometer and gear display and shares its oval shape with the swivelling centre console and mesh dashboard.
A rectangular infotainment touchscreen stands proud of the dashboard and displays the original Fiat wordmark, similar to the concrete sign atop the Palazzina building at Lingotto.
The unconventional arrangement for rear seating – effectively a hammock in place of a traditional bench – is unlikely to make production, but it signals that Fiat is exploring ways to make cars lighter and cheaper.
CEO Olivier François previously told Autocar that the brand is committed to a future line-up focused on small cars.
A promotional video also calls back to the old four-stripe logo and highlights it as a “mark of the future”, suggesting that Fiat may return to this branding.
The most recent version of that logo was axed in 2003, and the brand has used a combination of wordmarks and shield-like emblems since.
François said: “At Fiat, we think that the Lingotto and the track are such a landmark that they deserve to become design markers.
“Their characteristics have inspired Fiat designers to trace the lines of the future Fiat models, from the incredible roof track to the ramp, a revolution in the 1920s, which is like a manifesto of our traditional lightness. Less material, more space: that’s our vision of interior design moving forward.
“The oval shape of La Pista 500 [the rooftop track] inspires several new interior product markers, while the façade, with the lightness of its windows, will also become a distinctive signature of the future models.
“I look forward to launching those Lingotto-inspired models a year from now.”
The Lingotto site is central to Fiat’s history, having opened in 1923 as the second-largest car factory in the world, behind only Ford’s River Rouge complex in Michigan, the US.
The five-floor building featured an upward-spiralled assembly line, with each level hosting a different stage of production, ending with a test drive on the rooftop.
Various Fiat group cars – including the 500 ‘Topolino’ and its post-war sucessor – were built at Lingotto until 1982, with the Lancia Delta ending its 49 years as a factory.
Thereafter it was converted into a retail and culture complex, hosting art exhibitions, shops, cafés and a hotel. It recently hosted the unveiling event for the Abarth 500e.