Pininfarina reflects on past US connections ahead of Monterey Car Week presence

Italian design house and coachbuilder Pininfarina is in the process of launching its own car brand focused on high-performance, ultra-luxury vehicles.

The first model will be an electric rival to the Bugatti Chiron. The car is code-named the PF0 and will be shown privately to prospective buyers during this week's Monterey Car Week. The public debut won't take place until the 2019 Geneva auto show next March.

Attending Monterey Car Week will be Michael Perschke, the CEO of the newly established Pininfarina car brand. He will be joined by Paolo Pininfarina, chairman of Pininfarina and grandson of founder Battista Pininfarina, who ahead of the visit reflected on Pininfarina's past connections with the United States.

He reveals that his grandfather in the decade before starting his eponymous design firm visited Detroit and was offered a job by Henry Ford to be chief designer of Ford. Pininfarina turned down the offer but was nevertheless keen on a partnership in the United States. He succeeded with Nash in the 1950s though the partnership didn't last.

Now Pininfarina the company is returning with its own car brand. Between the dates of August 23 and 26, Pininfarina will share to prospective buyers a life-size design intent model of the PF0. The company is also expected to release a few more details to the public beyond what we've already seen.

No more than 150 examples of the PF0 will be built, with prices rivaling those of the top hypercars like the Bugatti Chiron and upcoming Aston Martin Valkyrie and Mercedes-AMG Project One. Specific performance goals include a 0-62 mph time in less than 2.0 seconds, a top speed in excess of 250 mph, and a possible driving range of over 300 miles on a single charge.

Inside, there will be two screens located either side of a compact steering wheel and angled toward the driver. Conventional dials have been eliminated and replaced with a head-up display (HUD) delivering all the vital information. Ex-Formula 1 driver Nick Heidfeld, who is helping develop the car, aims to ensure the HUD and all necessary in-car controls fall easily to hand and are instantly accessible and understood in all driving conditions.

Pininfarina is still accepting orders for the PF0 and has confirmed deliveries will start in 2020. Production will take place at the company's headquarters in Cambiano, Italy.

For more Monterey Car Week coverage, head to our dedicated hub.