Before getting into detail on the first Pininfarina Battista to land in Canada, let’s consider the man who started it all, Battista “Pinin” Farina. The coach builder and car designer opened his eponymous shop in Cambiano, some 13 kilometres south of Turin, in 1930. From then until his death in 1966, he forged a reputation as a creative powerhouse, eventually becoming famous for his collaborations with the legendary car manufacturers of the day.
The Ferrari 288 GTO. The Alfa Romeo Giulietta Spider. The Maserati GranTurismo. The names alone create a vivid picture of iconic Italian automotive design. In the 1980s, the firm, then under the guidance of Battista’s son, Sergio Pininfarina, branched out and began designing all manner of vehicles, from high-speed trains to yachts and private aircraft.
In 2015, the company Pininfarina SpA was acquired by the Mahindra Group, which three years later launched the subsidiary Automobili Pininfarina. The plan was to develop and build a limited edition all-electric hypercar with dizzying levels of performance. The company entered a technical partnership with another automotive powerhouse, Rimac Automobili, to develop the powertrain for the Battista—and the results are incredible.
The Pininfarina Battista is powered by four independent electric motors, one at each wheel, linked to a 120-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery pack. None of the words in the previous sentence are all that, err, shocking for a modern high-performance EV. But the Battista’s performance figures Battista are: 1,900 horsepower, 0 to 100 kilometres per hour in 1.86 seconds, and 0 to 200 kilometres per hour in 4.75 seconds.
But wait, there’s more.
The Battista owns a handful of production-car world records: fastest quarter-mile and half-mile sprints, and time for 0 to 60 miles per hour, 0 to 100 kilometres per hour, 0 to 120 miles per hour, and 0 to 200 kilometres per hour. To complete the circle, the Pininfarina also owns the EV world record for shortest stopping distance from 100 kilometres per hour (31 metres) and the best range for an electric hypercar of 300 miles (482 kilometres).
But the Pininfarina Battista isn’t all go and no show. The company’s own legacy demanded that its first all-electric hypercar be a thing of beauty—and so it is. The example on display at Grand Touring Automobiles in downtown Toronto, one of 26 Automobili Pininfarina retail around the globe, is furious and fast, even when standing still.
The client worked with the design team to personalize and refine the Battista, selecting a Verde Piemonte exterior paint scheme and adding the optional Furiosa Pack with exposed carbon fibre, coloured black with a similarly green-hued pinstripe. The roof is also coloured black, as are the fantastically futuristic side mirrors.
The exterior also features the optional Exterior Jewellery Pack with brushed aluminum upper elements and anodized black lower sections. Finally, this Battista rides on Prezioso wheels finished in ceramic polished gloss, with all that prodigious stopping power triggered by black brake calipers.
Inside the passenger compartment, there’s luxurious black-leather seating with contrast stitching to match the Verde Piemonte paint, and the client has also ordered a custom luggage set to fit in the front cargo compartment. With all the green and black, it’s a toss-up whether this Battista would be the ride of choice for Batman or for the Green Hornet.
Limited to just 150 examples for the world, the Pininfarina Battista is proof that EVs can be genuine enthusiast cars. You just need to get in the right frame of mind.