Back To The Future For Fiat

Tue 23rd May 2023

Fiat have celebrated 100 years of their iconic Lingotto facility by revealing a glimpse into the company’s design language of the future.

The Lingotto factory, situated in Turin, is widely regarded as one of the most important buildings in Italian automotive history. Construction commenced in 1916 and concluded in 1923. The factory's design and features were innovative and remarkable for their era in architecture and engineering.

Giacomo Matte-Trucco designed the Lingotto factory. The layout of the building was distinctive due to its five-story structure and rooftop test track. The one-kilometre track was used for testing newly produced vehicles. Vehicles would ascend a ramp to the rooftop, facilitating streamlined testing and quality assurance.

The Lingotto factory attained the status of the largest automobile manufacturing plant in Europe after its construction was finished. The implementation of assembly lines in the factory resulted in enhanced efficiency and the ability to produce Fiat vehicles on a large scale.

The Lingotto factory ceased production in 1982 due to changes in Fiat's production requirements as the automotive industry evolved. Nevertheless, the edifice was not deserted, it underwent a significant transformation and became a multifunctional complex.

Renzo Piano, a well-known architect, redeveloped the factory by incorporating contemporary elements while maintaining its historical characteristics. The rooftop test track was repurposed as an exhibition space, and a hotel named "Officine Grandi Riparazioni" (OGR) was constructed adjacent to the factory.

Now the company are using Lingotto to ‘inspire change and make a sustainable future accessible to all.

“The Lingotto has been an icon of Italian production, of renewal and transformation and, still today, it’s an engine for new ideas,” said Ginvera Elkann, President of Pinacoteca Agnelli, whose great grandfather opened the factory. 

“In the 80s we were in search of a new purpose, so my grandfather decided to turn it into what you see today: shops, offices, hotels, and culture fulfilled by the artistic mission of Pinacoteca Agnelli.  Recently relaunched through a new ambitious programme of exhibitions and events, the Pinacoteca has become a new destination for a diverse and young public.”