The Engineering development starts with the definition of the vehicle packaging (wheelbase, track, main external and internal dimensions) that represents the first technical input for the overall vehicle development. The starting point is the platform complete of powertrain, chassis and mechanical components and systems normally supplied by the customer.

Engineering works simultaneously with Styling thanks also to the extensive use of the Virtual Reality Center, using CAD,CAS, CAE and DMU technologies. As soon as the sketches and renderings are completed, a team of engineers carry out simultaneous verifications on CAS surfaces to verify the technical feasibility and coherence with the vehicle targets.

Aerodynamic simulations and tunnel tests allow the styling surfaces to be optimized ensuring that aerodynamic targets are achieved. The manufacturing constraints and requirements are taken into account to guarantee the technological feasibility in the production plants.

The integration between Engineering and Styling, with the simultaneous exchange and full sharing of information and data (common database), allows the optimization of the development times and costs.


Italdesign works in full integration with the customer Process Technology and Manufacturing to ensure that the technical solutions are feasible and can be manufactured and put into production, examining their compatibility with the production methods and tooling/equipment used in the production plants. The different component suppliers are fully integrated and managed according to the vehicle scheduling plan agreed with the customer. The Virtual Car is in real time continuously assembled and updated to check with DMU tools that the geometrical constraints and targets (clearances, gaps, assembly…) are fulfilled.

Antonio Casu

Antonio Casu

Head of Engineering

+39 011 6891611

Concept Development – Show Cars

The Concept Development Department, supported by the Design, Body, Chassis, EE and Simulation Departments, is tasked with steering the definition process for the creation of an exclusive product by integrating a customer’s various requirements, and subsequently submitting the output to the Series Development Department.

We develop showcar models to make styling dreams come true. We are constantly committed to innovation, which will inspire our future series productions. We also develop vehicles for ultra low-volume production and showcars with exclusive features.

Concept definition:
Starting from market or customer’s requirements, we define the vehicle package, the exterior dimensions and interior layout, taking into account users’ needs. We handle the whole development process, thus guaranteeing that the vehicle meets the desired specifications.

Concept car construction:
We identify the best technical solutions and sections for the product, reconciling the requirements of all the parties involved in development, so as to strike the best balance between technical and technological constraints, ergonomics, performance and costs. This process results in the creation of the first virtual concept car.

We support our customers in creating their concept cars, using either conventional or alternative platforms, and we can also develop a new car architecture, when necessary, to suit their changing mobility needs.

Product/Process Integration

Nowadays, projects are generally aimed at decreasing the development time, while containing costs, especially the undesired ones, and increasing competitiveness and quality, in terms of both production and marketing processes.

Our department is tasked with assembling thousands of car elements virtually to create the whole vehicle, monitoring and managing the process in order to perform all the checks that would be done on the physical model, insofar as possible.

Collecting all the elements’ variants (e.g., different engines, gearboxes, markets, interior and exterior trims, …) is a complex but challenging work. A great deal of information has to be integrated continuously from different departments (e.g., engineering, workshop, procurement, etc.).

Here are some of our activities:

  • virtual testing of geometry (static);
  • virtual assembly monitoring (track test);
  • gap and flush measurement;
  • tolerance chain analysis;
  • stamping feasibility;
  • jigs and fixtures (prototypes/series);
  • workshop assistance and “lesson learnt” meetings;
  • PDM (assembly/welding documents for prototypes).

Our ongoing research projects aim to improve the efficiency of the overall development process and will lead to increased use of virtual rather than physical models. This is our current focus: we deliver a premium service, aware of the key role we play in the development of next-generation vehicles.

Cost Engineering

Cost Engineering: the challenge of making a quality car at competitive prices.

Our department takes a design-to-cost approach. We follow every step of the process aimed at estimating the production cost of the car under development, through the following phases:

  • Benchmarking
  • Concept phase (top-down evaluation)
  • Target-setting (bottom-up calculation) 
  • Change management
  • Cost-monitoring

Based on the valuable feedback we have received from our customers, we have optimized our methodology by introducing new specific tools in order to improve the effectiveness of our design-to-cost approach.

At Italdesign, cost information is managed through a centralized PDM system (KBom), just like all other metadata, thereby allowing better, more structured monitoring at each project milestone.

Product Data Management

We like to describe ourselves using the slogan: “No BOM, no parts!”

A BOM (Bill of Materials) is the organizational tool used to describe and manage the properties of each vehicle and all of its components during the engineering, logistics and physical production phases (prototyping and series production). The BOM Department is in charge of managing this tool.

For example, a BOM supports the Engineering and Production Departments in coding each car component to be engineered and then built.

A BOM has to be created in compliance with the project planning and release processes and encompasses all stages, starting from the prototype phase and — since a few years now — covering also the completion of production; this is the result of strong integration between the IG/EB-5 department and the customer’s data management process.

In addition to the OEM’s BOM systems, Italdesign inputs information into its own PDM system (K-BOM) in order to perform series production. We can operate on all BOM systems, either those used by the OEM or our K-BOM, from any location.

When long-term partnerships are established, we can integrate all the PDM systems involved to easily speed up and efficiently manage the BOM process during the whole life cycle of the vehicle.

Antonello Garrone

Antonello Garrone

Head Of Vehicle Architecture

+39 011 6891611

A-Class Surfacing

A-Class surfacing entails the development of all the car’s visible surfaces that can be physically touched by customers. It is the base for all subsequent production and master building processes of any car to be produced.

In A-Class surfacing, based on its extensive knowledge and experience, the Department is called upon to provide a detailed overview with a focus on the feasibility of the settings. The A-Class Surfacing department is tasked with matching 3D-scanned clay model design and technical input. The sections obtained describe ergonomic requirements, tooling, assembling and packaging processes. The department receives the technical limitations on which it overlays the design concept to identify differences and align their specifications. In this way, it can achieve the best quality in tooling without compromising on design.

With regard to A-Class Surfacing, Italdesign’s key competences include:

  • whole exterior body
  • all interior parts
  • project management throughout the process, from sketch drawing to clay modelling and tooling
  • reflection analysis and ergonomic compensation using virtual reality
  • interaction with the new vehicle using virtual reality
  • cockpit simulation using virtual reality
  • providing data for creating a milled model (1:1)

Body Exteriors Development

We engineer the vehicles the next generation will wish to use!

The Body Exteriors department is tasked with managing vehicle development, from the concept to the start of production, taking into account all market needs and combining them with design, legal, weight and cost requirements, ensuring integration with all other components.

The combination of almost 50 year of experience with the latest digital technologies and an integrated ‘multiple eye’ process give us the right skills to meet customers’ needs in terms of modern, smart and target-oriented engineering:

  • body in white
  • closures
  • exterior trim

Interiors development

A vehicle’s interior trim plays a major role in user-vehicle interaction. Users experience a vehicle using all their senses: everything contributes to the perception of a car’s quality, from the visual layout of its components and how they match, its touchable surfaces, the smell of the leather or plastic, sound insulation quality, ergonomics and comfort.

With reference to interior trim, which requires the use of a wide variety of technologies (materials and processes), our experience is an added value as we offer OEMs flexible and cost-efficient solutions.

Italdesign’s Interior Development key competences are:

  • dashboard and middle console;
  • door trim panels;
  • upper, lower and luggage compartment trim;
  • seats.

The development approach to produce a whole upper structure (A-Class surfacing, Body Exteriors and Interiors) envisages a full integrator role between:

  • concept and design feasibility;
  • materials and technologies;
  • data construction;
  • performance integrator;
  • perceived quality and MMI;
  • parts validation.

Our extensive experience combines with a rigorous project management approach involving cost, time, weight, suppliers, specifications and quality, allowing Italdesign to fully meet the OEM’s vehicle requirements.

Numerical simulation

The right competences in all the development areas: what you see in a virtual environment is what you get in the real one.

An ever reduced development time needs a complete virtual validation of your vehicle.
A detailed planning activity to properly combine the simulation results with the CAD data developed by the different Engineering Units allows the team to have a complete vehicle validation before the tooling kick-off. The key factors for this successful validation process are:

  • Constant data alignment: by using the internal CAD-CAE integrated PDM system, we ensure that the virtual car FEM simulation is updated and aligned to the work underway on a daily basis;
  • Quick integration of results: the close integration between CAD and CAE engineers allows Italdesign-Giugiaro to define countermeasures in “real-time”;
  • Results reliability: the constant attention to correlation between numerical and testing results has generated a wide experience in Italdesign. Today, our simulation analysts are deeply integrated with the Performance Engineers, and the perfect alignment of numerical and testing methods ensures the results of our numerical models to be highly predictive, allowing tests and testing objects reduction.

The simulation activities cover all the engineering areas throughout the development process, using cutting-edge methodologies. More in detail, Italdesign can perform:

  • CFD analysis for exterior shapes, motor cooling and interiors
  • HVAC analysis
  • Static and dynamic stiffness assessment of Body in White / movable parts
  • Durability, Strength and Misuse analysis
  • Passive safety analysis: full vehicle crash, occupant protection, pedestrian protection
  • NVH / acoustics simulations
  • Vehicle dynamics assessment
  • Chassis structural validation

Passive / Active safety development

Today, the importance of the vehicle passive and active safety performance requirements has influenced and changed the approach of the vehicle development.
The main activities performed by Italdesign in this field are:

  • Target Setting and deployment
  • Benchmarking
  • Testing Plan (testing activities and objects) definition
  • CAD data check according to the design guidelines, including restraint systems geometrical and functional integration
  • Project testing execution, analysis and feedback

Italdesign has internal labs where tests on pedestrian protection and head impacts against interior elements can be performed.

To undergo high-speed crash tests and active safety tests the whole vehicle is prepared at Italdesign premises and then sent to the testing facilities. After the test, the vehicle is sent back to Italdesign for the final measurements, analyses and checks.

Thanks to the close collaboration with CAD/CAE engineers, the availability of testing objects and the opportunity to run tests, safety performance engineers are highly effective in assuring the achievement of passive and active safety performances.

Aerodynamics, air conditioning and thermal management

External and internal air flows highly influence the vehicle performance in term of aerodynamics, engine cooling and air conditioning. As a consequence, they influence the vehicle’s exterior and interior design, which is managed and overseen from the very beginning of the project to the final vehicle validation.

The main activities performed by Italdesign in this field are:

  • Target setting and deployment
  • Benchmarking
  • Testing Plan (testing activities and objects) definition
  • CAD data check according to the design guidelines
  • Project testing execution, analysis and feedback

Vehicles are prepared at Italdesign testing facilities and tested both at internal and external facilities near Italdesign. Thanks to the close collaboration with CAD/CAE engineers, the availability of testing objects and the opportunity to run tests, the aerodynamics, air conditioning and thermal management performance engineers are highly effective in assuring the achievement of the requested performances in their fields.

Davide Casini

Davide Casini

Head of Vehicle Safety & Functional Development

+39 011 6891611

Electrics & Electronics

In automotive industry, Electrics & Electronics has driven a high number of innovations, from the electronic systems of the past to the software solutions applicable in many fields today, finally leading to the ‘fully connected’ cars of the future.

Engineers within Electrics & Electronics have a wide experience in Car Networks including Wiring Harness development. On the other hand, our capabilities of integrating Advanced Driver Assistant Systems are the core competence when it comes to Autonomous Driving. Most likely, cars in the future will have full Electric Traction, calculating and integration of HV-Battery, E-Engine, Power and charge units. Therefore, this represents a growing competence within Italdesign. Another working area is developing and integrating Front, Rear and Interior lighting, applying the newest Technologies such as Matrix-Beam or laser front lighting. A growing field has become HMI & Infotainment, where Italdesign offers development services for Graphic User Interface and necessary components such as displays, switches, antennas or speakers. In addition, our laboratory has a wide experience in building prototypes and show cars, as well as testing components and cars.

Ralph Schuenemann

Ralph Schuenemann

Head of Electrics & Electronics

+39 011 6891611

Whole vehicle development

The Whole Vehicle Development Department is dedicated to ensuring that the most stringent customer’s requirements are complied with and integrated into the project.

We are involved in the project since the first concept decisions, from the definition of the vehicle features to the launch on the market. We continuously monitor vehicles’ performance with regard to quality, reliability and functionality of the whole vehicle.

We are able to provide precise whole vehicles targets deployment to subsystem since the early concept phases.

Our main areas of development:

  • Acoustic
  • Corrosion
  • Homologation
  • Layout Engine bay & Underfloor
  • Vehicle planning
  • Squeak and Rattle
  • Testing labor
  • Weight
Elisa Mandich

Elisa Mandich

Coordinator of Whole Vehicle Development

+39 011 6891611