Whatever Happened To… Enrico Fumia

We asked that question a while back. Quite by chance I found this concept car done by or under the superivision of Signor Fumia.

2006 Lancia J: source
2006 Lancia J: source

The idea revolves around symmmetry. From such excercises one learns how much one takes for granted in the form language of a conventional design. This is Enrico Fumia and the side profile of the car.

Enrico Fumia and a Lancia J concept car: source
Enrico Fumia and a Lancia J concept car: source

We know that the doors might reference the Appia which had the same arrangement. The undulating brightwork on the sill is not something I can explain away. It’s simply upsetting. I think that if the main conceit had been symmetry then adding “noise” like that was only going to distract from that point.

A symmetrical car only shows why cars have to be asymmetical in their long axis. I can’t describe how abysmal the grille is.

Author: richard herriott

I like anchovies. I dislike post-war town planning.

10 thoughts on “Whatever Happened To… Enrico Fumia”

  1. Liepedia tells us that Fumia designed the “Lancia Lybra (partially)”. Perhaps he drew it only up to the B-pillar, and then expected it to be mirrored.

    The other ‘mirrored’ car which comes to mind is the Nash / Austin Metropolitan. Not a thing which pleases me.

  2. It’s an odd thing indeed. The sill trim unfortunately reminds me of something from Ripspeed that has come unstuck and distorted in the heat. The car seems designed to show that, yes, you can produce a 4 door using just 2 pressings, providing you accept that the car looks ungainly, that it is uncomfortable to get in and out of and has poor visibility. The meanest manufacturer might realise that isn’t a price worth paying. Even as a ‘concept’ or ‘exercise’ it looks like work in progress rather than something to pose behind.

  3. I find it interesting just how few good Lancia concepts there have been over the years. Most of the recent ones at least have at least nodded towards retro – even the better ones like the GrandTurismo and GTStilnovo proposals from a decade ago carried strong suggestions of the Aurelia GT. There’s more than a hint of the Aurelia Berlina here, but it’s all such a studied mess, it’s difficult to figure out exactly whether that was the intent. Even without the Dali-esque surfaces, it’s all so numbingly predictable. Yet Fumia had several good designs in his back pocket – or at least involvement in their creation, so to see this in the light of clear sky thinking on his part is more than a little troubling.

    What all of this suggests to me is that Lancia’s design evolution ceased with the termination of Pininfarina’s contract and centro stile – (and just about everyone else) – hasn’t had a clue how to evolve it. Yet, for there to be any hope of the marque’s reinvention, a coherent and forward-looking styling direction would need to be re-established, which would require a deep-rooted understanding of the marque’s history and its future path. It’s all hopeless really, isn’t it?

  4. An awful lot of successful designers somehow lost it once they were free and independent – as a look at Leonardo Fioravanti’s post-Pininfarina output quickly explains. Unfortunately, Fumia doesn’t appear to be bucking this trend.

  5. An object lesson in how not to do it. My uplifted soul on this sunny and beautiful morn gazing out of my log cabin at the magical layer of newly fallen snow, has been dashed against the rocks of a superego with a criminally untutored sense of proportion. Gazing at the mirror and reproducing a version of his patrician visage would have produced a far more edifying result.

  6. A propos of nothing, other than my odd fixation with translations of proper names, who knew that “Enrico Fumio” can b rendered into into English as “Harry Webster”?

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