Two names indelibly linked to the history
Italian automotive industry for their
important contributions, Ferruccio
Lamborghini (bottom) and Giovanni Michelotti
(top), have been induced into the European
Automotive Hall of Fame during a ceremony in
names indelibly linked to the rich history Italian
automotive industry for their very important
contributions, Ferruccio Lamborghini and Giovanni
Michelotti, have been induced into the European
Automotive Hall of Fame during a ceremony that took
place at the 79th Geneva Motor Show.
Each year in
Geneva, new members are inducted into the European
Automotive Hall of Fame and this year four more key figures
from history were added to the roll of honour: as well as
Lamborghini and Michelotti, Werner Breitschwerd and Hubb Van
Doorne were also inducted. The Hall of Fame honours
lifetimes of technical, managerial and entrepreneurial
achievements. It is the annual event that pays tribute to
the giants of the European automotive industry. Members are
selected by a panel of distinguished judges.
Started in 2001
the European Automotive Hall of Fame is a non-commercial,
not-for-profit initiative of Automotive News Europe in
association with the Geneva Motor Show. The Hall of Fame
belongs to the whole European auto industry. It is funded
through annual sponsorships from Europe’s major automotive
companies as well as a significant annual contribution from
Automotive News Europe.
New members are
inducted into the Hall of Fame at a gala dinner during the
Geneva Motor Show. The annual dinner brings together more
than 200 senior automotive industry executives. The Hall is
in the Palexpo, home of the Geneva Motor Show. Plaques
honouring the new inductees are mounted on a special Hall of
Fame wall each year.
Lamborghini is a creator of innovative supercars. Born
in Italy in 1916, Lamborghini began assembling tractors
in a small garage. By 1949, he opened Lamborghini
Trattice and built tractors of his own design. Their
success helped him open the business he is best
remembered for, high-performance sports cars. At a new
factory in Sant'Agata, he built probably the best grand
touring cars of the 1970s. Lamborghini died in 1993.
Michelotti was, arguably the first freelance car designer.
During his 44-year career, he designed some 1,200 cars for
brands that included Ferrari, DAF, Triumph, BMW and Renault
Alpine. He started with coachbuilder Stabilimenti Farina in
1936 and founded his own design studio in Turin in 1949.
With his fresh and elegant Italian style, Michelotti was a
major influence on the shape of cars of the 1950s and 1960s,
and to some extent on the models of this day and age.
Also induced in
Geneva last week were Werner Breitschwerdt a member of the
Daimler-Benz board of management from 1977 who is credited
with evolving Mercedes-Benz from an exclusive
status-oriented brand to the sophisticated premium brand it
is today and Huub Van Doorne who was the driving force in
the Dutch truck and car industry’s heyday in the 1930s but
he is best known for patenting continuously variable