Ramaciotti retired from designing cars in 2005 after working for Pininfarina for two decades. In June of 2007 he was lured out of retirement by current Fiat-Chrysler Sergio Marchionne to head Fiat’s design team.
The 63-year-old will now attempt to create a common look for Chrysler and its sister brand Lancia so that future models will be virtually identical apart from their badges--as we all know, the Chrysler brand has been axed in Europe, with its cars continued to be sold across the Atlantic but wearing Lancia badges instead (excluding the UK).
If successful, the plan should help drive down costs as the models will no longer need to be differentiated. If you notice above, the Lancia Thema wears a different grille and bumpers to its Chrysler 300 twin.
“We are trying to find an international language, which could have a place both here in Italy and in the U.S.,” Ramaciotti said during an interview with Bloomberg. “If you put all the models into the showroom, they must fit together. It’s a delicate problem.”
With any luck, Fiat-Chrysler is targeting combined sales for its Chrysler and Lancia division of roughly 800,000 cars per year by the middle of the decade.
Importantly, U.S. designers will still play an important role in designing future Chryslers despite the brand, and its styling, evolving to become a much bigger global player.