The basic idea for the Maserati Alfieri was to challenge the students of the “Technician of industrial modelling” course at the Centro Europeo Modellismo Industriale (CEMI – European Center for Industrial Modeling) school with a complex and at the same time exciting real-life project.
As designer Simone Porta explains: “The project aims at paying homage to the ‘Made in Italy’, intended as craftsmanship excellence and attention to details.”
The final 1:5 scale plaster model was hand built by the students and involved a number of local specialized companies working in the automotive industry, such as GR Painting, which supported the final painting and finishing process, and Foglizzo Leather, which supplied the material for the leather stripes on the fenders and hood.
The stylistic interpretation of the Italian Granturismo theme by coachbuilders has always represented an iconic expression of motorsports, fascination, exclusivity and elegance.
“We wanted to create a beautiful car, that would underline the deep connection between this region and the inestimable heritage of Italian coachbuilders, while reinterpreting its core values in a contemporary manner.”
This goal led to incorporate a number of classic cues, including the leather straps on the hood – typical of the early racing cars – the Sebring-inspired side air vents and the side back window contour, influenced by the 1967 Ghibli.
The front end is characterized by an enlarged radiator grille and by the prominent license plate frame in carbon fiber, which acts as a distinctive, three-dimensional design element.
The hood incorporates three air openings and adds to the car’s aggressive character.
In side view, the main design elements are the brake air extractor behind the front and rear wheels and the leather stripes, that act as retro cues while proving a distinctive graphic theme. The DLO graphics has been visually extended adopting the carbon fiber panel which changes the overall proportions of the rear section.
The rear end features a distinctive element with exposed carbon fiber, which lends the car a redesigned appearance with a new balance of volumes.
While evoking a classic style, the Alfieri also includes some modern and innovative features and technology: from the extensive use of carbon fiber composites to the distinctive “Thermo leather” treatment and the premium interior materials like Burl Wood and silk.
A didactic project
“The Alfieri is not just a styling exercise, but a feasible, working one-off that can be customized and tailored to the customer’s requirements.”
“The students had to work on an existing and working vehicle. Starting from Simone Porta’s lectures, they analyzed all the production-related constraints and regulations.
“This allowed to achieve a good understanding of the difference and the connection between conceptual creativity and technical feasibility.”
The project had a high didactic value, since it required a complete design process, from the idea to the virtual model to the final physical model, following all the prototyping stages.
For more information on the project visit www.simoneporta.it.
The CEMI, European Center of Industrial Models operates in the Piedmont region, Italy, since 1998. The project stems from the collaboration between the Agency of vocational training services in the Province of Cuneo –
“Many companies and styling centers were facing a generational change of the figures of models, with the difficulty of not having some structural and organizational skills inside the company, being mutated learning systems at work and employability workshops for young people with specific characteristics of dexterity and precision.
“The delineation of a professional profile suited to these requirements involved and still involves a committee of experts models makers and designers from leading companies, including Giorgetto Giugiaro.”
For more information visit CEMI’s website.
(Image Courtesy: Simone Porta for Car Body Design)