Adrian van Hooydonk, the current boss of the BMW design department, has had a close encounter with the lively-colored i8 concept that was created in honor of BMW Italy’s 50th anniversary.
The model is the work of Garage Italia Customs, who is best known for having a big affection for the cutesy Fiat 500 city car, with more than one customizations to brag about. But their latest project involved designing something that is built further away from their home – they worked on the plug-in hybrid sports car BMW i8 in honor of 50 years of BMW presence in Italy. This is of course a one-off, nicknamed Futurism Edition, and the model was presented by GIC’s president and founder Lapo Elkann to chief of BMW design Adrian van Hooydonk during a recent trip to the automaker’s headquarters in Munich.
While you might think the i8 is inspired by the colorful BMW Art Cars, in fact the livery has been remastered starting from the Giacomo Balla “Lampada ad Arco” painting on display in New York at the Museum of Modern Art. The artist symbolized the arrival of electricity in the early 1900s – with the i8 painting the picture of BMW’s electric future. Inside the cockpit the prototype i8 also underwent some changes, with a special upholstery projecting iridescent reflections when hit by light – crafted specifically for this project, it was made out of Solaro, a type of fabric usually used for suits.