MARZO 1991

011964 Fiat 500 Jolly bodied Ghia.In mid-March of 1991, with the enthusiasm of Proteo's presentation in Geneva, Roberto Stola confidently granted his nephew Alfredo the management of a new show car based on the Fiat Panda, to create a "beach" version inspired by the Fiat 500 and 600 Jolly Ghia of the 60s.
The aim was to show the company's manufacturing capabilities without the restrictions of industrial confidentiality of its customers.
Alfredo and Maria Paola followed this project with passion, listening to the advice of Giuseppe Civardi, technical manager of the Fiat Style Center in Via La Manta, Turin.

02Saluzzo 1991 Aldo Garnero in a photo of the time in his Euro Design Engineering studio.

03April 1991. The chosen design by Aldo Garnero.
The project name is Maui, the palm tree graphics are inspired by the Mirage hotel in Las Vegas

04April 1991 A second proposal by Aldo Garnero rejected by the Stola family.05April 1991 A third proposal by Aldo Garnero rejected by the Stola family.

06Rivalta in May 1991 at the Opac. Alfredo Stola poses with the body of the Panda under construction.
Robaldo can be seen in the background.

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09Rivalta May 1991 At the Opac we recognize Rodolfo Robaldo of the Stola s.p.a. and Sergio Fraire of Opac.10Rivalta May 1991 At the Opac we recognize Rodolfo Robaldo of the Stola s.p.a. and Sergio Fraire of Opac.

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12Turin 12 July 1991 At the Pubblimais in Strada della Pronda 135/9 the Mirage logo is hand painted by the owner Vinicio Mais.13Turin 12th July 1991. In the souvenir photo we recognize the son Roberto Mais and his cousin Lorenzo.

14September 3, 1991 Portofino Maria Paola and Alfredo Stola for the first time on the Panda Mirage.
Note that the name Mirage appears under the three palm trees.
 

153 September 1991 in Portofino the Panda Mirage is photographed for the first time with its original number plate TO64254R.16With the name Mirage it will never be published in any newspaper at the request of Fiat top management.

17September 1991. At the lake of Avigliana the first and only unofficial Sunday outing of the Panda Destriero together with his friend Fabrizio Giugiaro and his Special panda called "Strip".The designer was Aldo Garnero, the body was build by Opac and the upholstery by Salt of Gavina family.
The name of this "spiaggetta", photographed for the first time in the splendid setting of Portofino on 3 September 1991, was Mirage, which shortly afterwards would change to "Destriero" on the advice of Fiat's top managers, in particular that of the engineer Paolo Cantarella.
This perfectly functioning prototype would be the first of many concepts that STOLA spa will carry out on its own initiative for demonstration purposes towards its customers.
18The first prototype was registered in 1991 by STOLA s.p.a., bearing license plate TO 64254R and chassis number ZFA 141A0004604624.
On November 20th 1995, Fiat Auto s.p.a. authorised STOLA s.p.a. to proceed in updating the circulation documents of the vehicle into a doorless beach-car with the "nulla osta" GC / AA number N 95/3223.
The approval was issued by the Ministry of Transport and Navigation on 25 January 1996 and the transcription in the vehicle registration document takes place on February 1st of the previous year.

19March 1992 Porto Cervo, the Stola Panda Destriero in the first official photograph with the name Destriero, no longer Mirage. In the background you can see the great Destriero motorboat in preparation by the great business.
The front registration plate (TO 77317S) for this picture was borrowed from another Fiat-owned vehicle for internal reasons. The first example of the Stola Panda Destriero has always been targed TO64254R, and it is so still today.

20October 1991 The project from Mirage will become Destriero at the request of Fiat Auto.The STOLA Panda Destriero  had its the world premier at the Turin Motor Show in April 1992 on the Fiat stand.
The setting tells the story of the motor vessel Destriero, at  whose rudder Cesare Fiorio and his crew would  to try to win the blu ribband in for crossing the Atlantic for the Yachting Club Costa Smeralda.
Basically the STOLA Panda Destriero was the tender in Porto Cervo for the  boats crew.

21Turin, April 23, 1992 Turin Motor Show Fiat stand. Maria Paola and Alfredo Stola with the two month old Francesco in the special dedicated display of the Destriero motor vessel company.
The front registration plate (TO 77317S) for this picture was borrowed from another Fiat-owned vehicle for internal reasons. The first example of the Stola Panda Destriero has always been targed TO64254R, and it is so still today.

22Nicola and Cristian D'Alessio of DN Trasporti. Always the transporters of Stola s.p.a.In end of June, a few months later the show, the Fiat Style Center requested a second twin STOLA Panda Destriero for the Avvocato Gianni Agnelli.
After having seen it, the Avvocato requires a change of color in the most classic blue used by the Agnelli family and a particular interior in light gray and the hood covering only the front seats.

23Villarbasse September 1992. For the first time here are the two Stola Panda Destriero twins. The one in the foreground without a canopy is intended for the Avvocato Gianni Agnelli.

24October 1992 Alfredo Stola and little Francesco in the entrance hall of Via La Thuile before the delivery of the Destriero to the Fiat Style Center after the changes requested by the Avvocato Agnelli.25October 1992 The Stola Panda Destriero of the Avvocato just delivered and photographed in front of the offices of the Fiat Style Center in Via La Manta in Turin. You can see the particular hood covering only the front seats.

For Alfredo and Maria Paola the Mirage-Destriero was the car to for which they have so much affection, so much so  that still today they use it during their holidays by the sea.
Their love for the Mirage-Destriero stems from the fact that the whole project was developed while their child Francesco was in his mothers  womb, and at only two months old he would attend the world premier on the Fiat stand with his parents.

Following this great experience, STOLA spa created the slogan "No Style Design" in order to communicate and  reassure its customers that the company would never deal with creating "style" with the exception of its demonstration prototypes, which in themselves would be  created by designers who were  friends from outside the company.

26Logo designed by STOLA spa to communicate to the manufactureres style centers that design is not its business.

To crown the passion for the Destriero,Francesco Stola's Canevese Ruote Classice club in Canavese was now owner of the rare beach car, on January 8th, 2020. ASI issued it with their "Targa Oro" certificate.
A thorough inspection took place in Samone in the province of Turin on 30 November 2019 by Commissioners Luigi Viceconte, Lorenzo Beltrami, and Rolando Pluma coordinated by Mario Alasia.
With the number 52702 the identity certificate of the "Fiat Stola Destriero" was classified as Type A, Group 1.

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29Samone (To) November 30, 2019: the moments of verification with the commissioners Alasia, Viceconte, Beltrami and Pluma.30The gold plate will be given on January 8, 2020 by ASI through the Classic Wheels club in Canavese.

31Samone (To) 30 novembre 2019: una foto ricordo con i commissari dopo la stesura del verbale. Da sinistra A.Stola, Lorenzo Beltrami, Mario Alasia, Luigi Viceconte e Lorenzo Pluma.

 

AUGUST 1991

In the end August 1991, STOLA spa was called on by the Fiat Style Center for  the construction of two external and internal style models related to the Bravo - Brava projects.
A very demanding job for the Via Thuile model shop because of the great importance placed by Fiat for these two strategic future models that would replace the Tipo.
The concept of creating two very different vesions but with many hidden common parts  involved many of Fiat stylists and Stola modelers.

011995 Advertising photos of the Brava and Bravo.

031991 The architect Ermanno Cressoni, director
of the Fiat Style Center.
The architect Ermanno Cressoni as director of design was  always in sync with CEO Paolo Cantarella.
The designers on the Fiat Team, both of the exteriors and of the interiors, under the supervision of Chris Bangle were Peter Davis, Mauro Basso, Peter Fassbender, Andreas Zapatinas and Antonio Piovano.
Through their drawings they realised the mathematics in the Fiat  "Piani di Forma and Surfaces "department in collaboration with the STOLA digital modellers co-ordinated by Carlo Mantovani.
The final objective was to certify the style models and then to realize the class A mathematics in order  to build the two Mathematical Verification Masters for the final use of the Fiat mold manufacturing department.

041995 Official photo of the instrument panel of the Bravo designed by Mike Robinson.

 

SETTEMBRE 1991

01Between 1991 and 1992, STOLA s.p.a. realizes the engineering and prototyping project to transform 3 platforms bodies of the type 348 TS in the spider version. Among these activities also the engineering of the canvas top.

In September 1991 STOLA s.p.a. received an order for design and prototyping work direct from Ferrari for a project codenamed F131.
The request is to engineer the transformation of the chassis and bodywork of the type 348 TS, designed by Pininfarina, into an open spider version.
To do this it was necessary to increase the torsional stiffness of the body as well as create the compartment that would house the canvas top, which was the real novelty of this version.
Stola design director Gottardo Bustreo supported by Siro Palestra, Bergamasco and the entire team, carried out the engineering studies for the modifications of the chassis and bodywork, all of which was validated by the necessary structural calculations.
Using three bodies of the TS, delivered by Maranello to the Turin headquarters of Stola, modifications were made using hand beaten and welded prototype sheet metal parts.
The design and installation of prototype canvas roofs were also included in the work.
In Maranello in 1992, the three prototypes were tried and tested by the various Ferrari departments, with positive results.
The 348 Spyder went on sale through the dealer network in spring 1993.

 

OCTOBER 1991

In October 1991, the Fiat Purchasing Department, headed by Dr. Riccardo Bussolati, asked the Engineer Alberto Sasso and Roberto Stola if they would like to develop the dash board of the future Fiat Punto.
The content of the work would be to take the style model, provided by Fiat, and develop it to master model, the first set of molds and the first 300 assembled dash boards.
An unconventional proposal in the plastic molds sector, probably due to a delay in programming inside Fiat and therefore a possible idea to reach an emergency target.

011991 The engineer Alberto Sasso at his desk.

02December 1991 Bruno Arienti, having just arrived
in STOLA.

After an important internal meeting at STOLA spa in which Roberto Stola, Gottardo Bustreo (design director) and Albarto Sasso participated, an agreement with the companies Canta and Tea of the Comau group, Fiat’s director Bussolati’s proposal was accepted.
For the occasion, Bruno Arienti, a highly qualified technician from Stars, among the leaders in the production of plastic finishes for the automotive sector, was specifically appointed for this very difficult project.

031992 Master Model Fiat Punto dash board.

041992 The first prototype plastic inserts assembled
on the Master.

The main difficulties of this project were the timing and price targets that were imposed, 19 months and £ 13,000,000,000 (Lira) respectively.
The aim was to have the pre-production dashboards fitted in the cars for the beginning of August 1993.
It was a difficult task considering that for previous projects the target was usually 24 months, but with the idea of managing the complete with only one protagonist from the beginning it would prove possible.

05December 1992 Alberto Sasso At the side of the mold of the Fiat Punto dashboard.

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07March 1993 the first prototype, still to be embossed, the first assembly on the Mountability Master.

08Turin March 1993 at the restaurant Adriano in via Pollenzo dinner to celebrate the first dashboard.

The responsibility for STOLA spa was enormous, with the risk of delaying the production of the Fiat Punto a few months compared to the planned date.
The guideline was "Simultaneous Engineering" organized by STOLA spa with its main partners, dedicating a great internal team as never before.

09March 1993 the workshop in Via Bard specially equipped for the Punto project.10March 1993 at the workshop in Via Bard all the caliber molded parts are checked.

It was unique experience that in addition to reaching the desired target, would lead the company to have a much more structured internal organization, something that was be noticed with satisfaction by the Fiat Group for future even more complex turnkey projects.
Halfway through, Fiat unexpectedly decided to start sales in parallel with the right-hand drive dashes for the UK  market and asks the STOLA to produce the high-quality prototype molds required.

11May 1993 air ducts being welded using with ultrasonic wave welding equipment in via Bard.12May 1993 air ducts being welded using with ultrasonic wave welding equipment in via Bard.

13June 1993 in the STOLA workshop,Via Bard day and night the dash boards of the Fiat Punto are being assembled,
they would then be assembled in the body on the Fiat assembly in July in order to be ready
for the presentation on September 11th.

141993 Phase of the dashboard assembly.
In the center with the white shirt Bruno Arienti with two employees of Comec.
In particular Bruno Arienti, supported by Luigi Gallina, established a collaboration with the Dutch company Kupron in order to achieve the objectives.
For the record, the Fiat Punto in both the left and right drive versions was officially presented to journalists in Turin on 11 September 1993 at the Lingotto building with a memorable event, Fiat suppliers were also invited.

15September 11, 1993, Fiat Punto display cars for the use of journalists, showing their dashboards. The steering wheel, air vents and the gear lever were not among the parts supplied by STOLA spa.

These are months of intense and enthusiastic work with Fiat stylists practically living in the modeling shop with frequent visits by the architect Cressoni, Chris Bangle and CAV Giuseppe Civardi.
Unforgettable visits in Via La Thuile 69 by Paolo Cantatella always arrived with his blue Fiat Croma promptly parked in the internal entrance hall of the modeling shop.

 

DECEMBER 1991

In December 1991, on the occasion of the presentation of the future Fiat Cinquecento and at  the initiative of the engineer Paolo Cantarella, CEO of Fiat Auto, he asked all the main Italian coachebuilders to create special custom-built concepts based on small cars.
The occasion was  the Fiat stand at the upcoming Turin Motor Show scheduled for April 22, 1992.

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021992 All the Cinquecento specials together.The pre-selected coachbuilders were given a pre-series  Fiat Cinquecento and a cash contribution of 100,000,000 lire. Idea, Bertone, Pininfarina, Italdesign, Zagato, Coggiola and "Stola-Itca-Maggiora" were the selected companies.
The Stola-Itca-Maggiora companies are deliberately grouped together for their specific skills by the  Fiat board overseeing  whole project in anticipation for the turnkey development of the new Fiat Barchetta spider.

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l consorzio Stola-Itca-Maggiora realizzerà per questo evento Fiat la Cinquecento chiamata Cita, che in dialetto piemontese significa piccolina.
Per quanto riguarda il design, come per la Destriero sarà affidato ad Aldo Garnero.

 

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05April 1992 The official photos of the Fiat Cinquecento "Cita" created by STOLA-ITCA-MAGGIORA.

06Turin 22nd April 1992 Lingotto Motor Show: the Cinquecento "Cita" of Stola Itca Maggiora on the platform of the Fiat stand.

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