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Former Ferrari car designer Pininfarina dies

3 July 2012

By msnbc.com staff and news wires

Sergio Pininfarina, the man behind the designs for some of the most glamorous cars to hit the road in the past five decades, has died, the company that bore his family's name said Tuesday. He was 85.

Pininfarina was an auto design genius whose stamp can be seen on a slew of iconic cars, including the 1984 Ferrari Testarossa, the 1996 Peugeot 406 Coupe, the 1986 Fiat 124 Spider, the 2002 Ferrari Enzo, the 2003 Maserati Quattroporte and the 2004 Ferrari Scaglietti.

He headed a family company founded in 1930 by his father, Gian Battista 'Pinin' Farina, a onetime Turin carriage maker, that had a knack since the 1950s for creating stunning production and concept cars.

Pininfarina designed autos for Ferrari, the company most associated with the formidable design house, Alfa Romeo, Maserati, Rolls-Royce, Chevrolet, Cadillac, Bentley, Volvo and Peugeot.

Born in 1926, Sergio joined the family firm after graduating in mechanical engineering from Turin's Polytechnic University, became chief executive in 1961 and then chairman when his father died in 1966.

Sergio Pininfarina's death comes about three months after the passing at age 76 of famed Porsche founder, and the designer of the iconic Porsche 911, Ferdinand Alexander Porsche.

Reuters and The Associated Press contributed to this report.  Click here to read the full report.