In 2024, Hispano Suiza will be celebrating their 120th anniversary and to prepare for this impressive feat, the brand has decided on a creative project and partnered with students from the ‘Instituto Europeo di Design’ in Turin (IED). Hispano Suiza challenged the third-year students from IED Turin Triennial Course in Transportation Design and they boldly and bravely took it on. They were tasked to reinterpret the Hispano Suiza Alfonso XIII and adapt it for the near future.
Also known as the T45, the Hispano Suiza Alfonso XIII, was designed by Marc Birkigt. From 1911 to 1914, they produced what is considered the first sports car in the automotive history. King Alfonso XIII of Spain himself commissioned the car, as he was passionate about cars and the brand. His request was short but clear; he wanted a sporty and agile model.
The two-seater Hispano Suiza Alfono XIII not only met but exceeded his expectations. Equipped with an in-line four-cylinder engine and 60 CV of power that is transmitted to the rear wheels, the T45 had a maximum speed of 120 kph.
For their 120th year anniversary, Hispano Suiza has challenged the students of the Triennial Course in Transportation Design to explore and design the exterior, interior, and to describe the user experience of driving the Alfonso XIII of the future. Their limit is their imagination as the students are allowed to either use the current technology available or just simply let their imagination be the limit.
Hispano Suiza Design Director Francesc Arenas has been working closely with the students for the past few months. He advised them, guided them, and used his expertise and experience in helping them with the tasks. Hispano Suiza has again shown their commitment to shaping the talent of the youth, to deliver disruptive ideas, projects, and create new concept cars. Like the Swiss engineer Marc Birkigt, who founded the brand bank in 1904 with his partner Damian Mateu.
Arenas shared, “I am extremely proud to collaborate with the IED of Turin and to be able to offer the necessary tools to its students so that they let their imagination fly. Innovation and passion for design are key elements in the history, present and future of Hispano Suiza. For me and for everyoune in the Hispano Suiza team, being able to advise, work and inspire these new talents has been a stimulating and very rewarding experience.”
IED Turin Triennial Transport Design Course Coordinator Michele Albera added, “The implementation phases of the project represent, for the students, the moment to be free to express their creativity and the skills acquired during the technical, instrumental and theoretical classes. The collaboration with Hispano Suiza has allowed the students to face the demands of a legendary automotive brand, pioneer of excellence in the automotive sector, and the needs of an international market, bringing out their personality and passion.”
Hispano Suiza has always prided themselves to be the pioneer in both technology and design. This is easily seen from both their history and the latest models that they presented in 2019 and 2020. As a tribute to the company’s heritage, the Hispano Suiza Carmen and Hispano Suiza Boulogne are 100% electric vehicles, with a timeless design, dreamlike features, and ones that could truly be called works of art. The collaboration with the IED in Turin shows their commitment to the automotive world.