Automotive Styling

Pininfarina + Diavelo Join Forces To Create An E-Bike

“E-voluzione represents a perfect synthesis of our spirit: sporty character and eco-friendly soul” affirms Paolo Pininfarina. “Sporty and dynamic, a harmonic bikeable to guarantee high performances and great comfort”.

E-voluzione is the first electric bike born from the design collaboration between Pininfarina and bicycle makers Diavelo. E-voluzione was developed with a holistic design philosophy in mind. By that, I mean all the main components of the bike are integrated in the bike. By making a conscious effort to seamlessly integrate the battery, the mid-engine, the handlebar and stem, the cockpit, all the cables, the lighting system they have created not only a very aesthetically pleasing bike but one with a higher level of function. Thanks to better weight distribution and balance and a more comfortable and performing ride.

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Using carbon fiber in the frame and in the bar, seat post, wheels, the bike is extremely light weight compared to the competition, weighing in at 35 pounds. I know, hefty by traditional bike standards, but fairly light for a motorized e-bike.

The carbon fiber frame is produced by using an innovative process known as  autoclave carbon fiber. Which produces a lighter stiffer frame allowing the bike to be more maneuverable and perform better.

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The same level of innovation applies to other components that are used in the bike as well. The motor and transmission feature a high torque capacity and are fully integrated into the frame. The transmission is belt driven for an ultra quiet ride and reduces maintenance needs. In addition, they have integrated the patented battery into the frame, yet it is still fully removable for recharging or replacement if needed. The bike features hydraulic brakes and  Shimano components as well.

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Art of the Car Concours. It All About the Details.

This afternoon my friend Tim and I spent a few hours at the Art of the Car Concours on the grounds of the Kansas City Art Institute. The annual event is a scholarship fund raiser for the school, and over the last seven years has grown into a world class automotive event. The two of us spent a hot humid summer afternoon, walking through 100 or so vehicles taking photos, admiring the design styling, engineering, and distinction of the cars shown. At one point both of us commented on how each car, each brand, had unique looks that set it apart from it’s contemporaries.

Both of us remarked that in todays world, most people can’t tell a Nissan from a Honda, from a Volkswagen, from a Chevy, from a Hyundai, from a Kia, from a Ford (although Ford is arguably ahead of the curve in distinctive styling). Aside from a few marquee brands, or higher end autos, most look the same, and no one making a car for the masses puts the attention to detail in things like badging any more. Looking at a 49 Ford coupe, and 66 Covair it made me long for the days when each car brand looked distinct, and the exterior styling was as important as the creature comforts like iPhone connectivity that we lust after today.

Below is a sampling of some of the photos that I took today. Realistically some of these shots are for cars that would cost a small fortune in todays dollars. None the less, the attention to detail, the quality of materials, the small things, are what made these cars part of the golden age of automobile design. Personally I wish the big three, Ford, Chrysler, and Chevy would step up to the plate and bring this kind of styling back. Raise the bar, set a new standard based on vintage design styling that was in many ways simply better. No I don’t want the old school technology. What I want is a car that looks as cool as these, with all the comforts my 2013 model offers me today.

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