Giotto Bizzarrini Obituary, Death – 96-year-old engineer who designed Ferrari 250GTO and Lamborghini V-12 has died.• In the 1960s, engineer and test driver Giotto Bizzarrini formed his own car firm and won its class at Le Mans.• Bizzarrini resurfaced this year with ideas for the Giotto, a V-12 supercar. It’ll struggle to match the man’s legend. Automotive engineers want their machines to reflect them.
Giotto Bizzarrini died last week at 96, confident of his name’s perpetuity. What better legacy could an Italian engineer leave than fingerprints on the most desirable Ferrari and most stunning Lamborghini? Like Enzo and Ferruccio, Giotto fashioned a steel, glass, and rubber monument to his surname—the stunning Bizzarrini 5300GT. We remember him.
Bizzarrini studied in Pisa, home of the leaning tower, after being born in Quercianella, a Tuscan coastal village, in 1926. His father, Giotto, worked with Marconi. After graduating, Bizzarrini junior joined Alfa Romeo and worked on the Giulietta’s chassis development. The position frustrated the young Giotto, who wanted to work on engines. He became an engineer and test driver at Alfa Romeo’s experimental division due to his natural talent. He joined Ferrari’s sports-car development section in 1957.
He created the 250GTO, possibly Ferrari’s greatest car. Bizzarrini developed the test mule that became a thoroughbred using his own 250GT, although he was not at Ferrari to see the production car. He was one of five key engineers who left Ferrari’s “night of the long knives.” This debate would reverberate because Enzo was uncompromising.
First came the 250GT “Breadvan.” This Kamm-back special never beat Ferrari’s GTO, but it advanced aerodynamics. Count Giovanni Volpi, who had a grudge against Ferrari, recruited Bizzarrini. Giotto’s response to Enzo was even more significant. When Ferrari’s road cars were criticized, Enzo allegedly insulted a tractor manufacturer. Ferruccio Lamborghini was a fiery businessman who saw a need for a grand tourer that was faster than a Maserati but less temperamental than a Ferrari. Who developed such a machine’s engine? Ex-Ferrari engineer.