When Luxury Cars Meet High Fashion!
These are the top 20 most stylish ever collaborations between car manufacturers and fashion designers you need to know (great pics!).
To some people, a car is a fashion accessory, not just a means of transportation.
Car manufactures have been aware of this for decades and have always catered to fashion-conscious motor enthusiasts.
For years, prominent car manufacturers have partnered with fashion brands – from sportswear lines to haute couture houses – to create limited edition cars that transcend time.
These fashion and cars partnerships have produced some of the most attention-grabbing vehicles in auto history, loved by enthusiasts of both worlds.
Without further ado, these are the top 20 luxury cars and high fashion brands collaborations ever:
Bugatti Chiron X Hermès
Dsquared² X Mini Cooper S “Red Mudder”
Landrover Defender X Paul Smith
Volkswagen Golf GTI X Adidas
A Bathing Ape x Mercedes Benz 300SL Gullwing
Cadillac Seville X Gucci
Lincoln Continental Mark X Givenchy
Mercedes Benz X Swarovski
Thom Browne X Infiniti Q50
Mercedes Benz CLK 500 Cabriolet X Armani
11. Citroën X Lacoste
Described by the automakers as “an emblem for a state-of-mind,” the concept car between Citroën and Lacoste was first revealed at the 2010 Paris Motor Show.
“Positioned at the crossroads of automotive, fashion, and sports, the car strikes a playful note of design expertise and a lightness of STYLE,”
reads the official press.
Measuring at only 135.8 inches long – nearly three feet shorter than a Ford Fiesta – the collaboration was meant to dispel the notion that “more was always better” when designing a car.
There is a notable absence of doors, instrument panel, and roof – replaced instead by an inflatable canopy that could run from the car’s rear to the windshield header.
Even the headlamps are discreet to the point of being invisible, concealed under the car’s dark blue bodywork until they’re switched on.
12. Maserati Quattroporte X Ermenegildo Zegna
Two excellences of ‘Made in Italy’ came together to celebrate Maserati’s 100 years of success.
Luxury and sophistication characterize every detail of the interior of the Maserati Quattroporte Ermenegildo Zegna.
Zegna’s sartorial touch is present everywhere, in the combination of leather and silk, in the delicate shades of Greige (grey and beige), and on the interior.
It can also be seen in the wood, chrome, and brass pieces found on the console and the “One of 100” sign.
13. Meyers Manx X Berluti
This heritage menswear label has launched a fun, made-to-order summer ride that pays homage to the carefree surf culture of 1960s southern California: A beach buggy.
Inspired by the original 1964 Meyers Manx buggy model by Bruce F. Meyers, Berluti’s version of a Volkswagen Beetle is fitted with an open-wheeled polyester bodyshell replicating the original model.
The car is complete with a canvas soft-top featuring the brand’s new signature print by Berluti’s Creative Director, Kris Van Assche.
The Berluti logo appears on the hood in palladium-finished brass and as a subtle imprint on the steering wheel.
For the dashboard, interiors, and handcrafted seats, buyers are offered a selection of leathers and patinas.
There is also a black leather removable luggage carrier in the trunk.
At just 500kg, the car is powered by an air-cooled 1600cc flat-four engine of 90 HP.
14. Lamborghini Murciélago LP 640 X Versace
A partnership between two of the biggest global brands gave birth to the fantastic supercar that is Lamborghini Murcielago LP 640 Versace.
Produced in support of the Paris Mondial de l’Automobile and to celebrate Fashion Week in Milan, only two Lamborghini Murciélago LP 640 Versace editions – blue and white – reportedly have a price tag of over $1 million each.
Powered by a 6.5-liter V12 that produces 640 HP, the notable Versace accents come on the interior courtesy of the Versace designers and the specialists for the ‘Ad Personam’ program at Lamborghini.
The teams stamped the Nappa leather on the dashboard, doors, headliner, and seats with the distinctive Versace Greek fret motif.
Versace designers perfected the interior of the already impressive Murcielago.
The upholstery on the seats, the central console, the headliner, dashboard, and doors were updated using luxurious Nappa leather featuring Versace’s distinctive logo.
The Lamborghini Versace has all the features you’d look for in a flagship model: high-gloss ‘Hermera’ black-finished wheels, a carbon fiber interior finish, and a stunning glass engine cover.
15. Ford Thunderbird X FILA
The 80s marked the end of many designer and automotive collaborations.
Yet, Ford and Fila continued the trend with their take on the 1984-85 Thunderbird.
In an attempt to celebrate Fila’s relationship with tennis professional Bjorn Borg, the duo presented the car under the tagline, “The road has met its match.”
Fila colors – in black, red, and medium charcoal – appeared as small accents on the car’s white frame, while the interior featured a new digital instrument panel.
Those that purchased the Thunderbird also received a Fila sports bag containing a beach towel, sun visor, headband, and branded tennis wristbands.
16. Fiat 500C X Gucci
The Fiat 500 will always be an icon of Italianness at an international level.
Add to that an evening dress by Gucci, and you’ve got a car for the history books.
Customized by Frida Giannini – at the time creative director of the brand – in collaboration with the Fiat Style Centre, the car is packed with accessories and details that enhance its style and elegance.
Outside we find Gucci’s green-red-green monogram imprinted longitudinally along the side of the sedan.
At the same time, the alloy wheels with the unmistakable retro design of the rays embellish the exterior and the hubcaps branded with the double “G” in body color and the Gucci signature in italics.
17. Fiat X Bulgari
If a car could channel the joy, hedonism, and exuberance that defines 1950s Italy, it would be the fabulous little Fiat 500 by Bulgari.
Like a rare jewel, there are only three units of this Fiat 500 special edition in the world.
And this first-ever electric model of the beloved Cinquecento truly lives up to its name of “never enough.”
Evoking the light of the Eternal City, its metallic paint in Imperial Saffron is achieved through the integration of gold dust.
Bulgari’s Parentesi motif is reimagined on the engine front grid, while its eight-pointed star is referenced on the wheel rims.
Its interiors showcase a dashboard covered in colorful hand-painted silk and seats decked out in embroidered octane leather.
18. Mercedes-Benz x Virgil Abloh
Mercedes-Benz collaborated with the chief creative director and founder of Off White and Men’s artistic director of Louis Vuitton, Virgil Abloh, to create Project Geländewagen.
Mercedes-Benz Chief Design Officer Gorden Wegner and Abloh took the legendary G-Class SUV to disrupt the classic notions of luxury.
The collaboration unveiled the G-Class that looked radically different from any versions of the popular SUV before.
The Project Geländewagen is essentially a racing version of the G stripped out completely to make it a canvas.
The partially sanded paintwork is there to embrace the notion of beauty in imperfection.
The interior is barebones with an F1 steering wheel and racing seats. The safety elements are highlighted in red.
There are light blue elements that pop up in an otherwise spartan cabin. The 1:3 replica of the car was auctioned to Sotheby’s Contemporary Curated program.
19. AMC Hornet X Gucci
The AMC Hornet was considered a rather mundane car during the start of the 1970s.
However, that all changed when the hatchback was given a luxury upgrade in 1972 thanks to Gucci – resulting in a Sportabout model with a distinct flare sloping hatch rather than a traditional tailgate.
Between 1972-1973 4,835 models were produced – including a one-off for Aldo Gucci himself.
Although there was Gucci branding on the exterior, the car’s interior could appreciate one of the first examples of high-fashion aesthetics appearing inside a vehicle.
The result was signature red and green striping on unique beige-colored upholstery fabrics and ivory headliner with Gucci’s trademark double-G pattern.
From a novelty perspective, there was also a writing desk with a lamp and sterling silver pen that folded out from the dash, as well as a compartment hidden in the back of the driver’s seat that opened to reveal a miniature liquor cabinet and removable box to play card games.
All of this could be had – at the time – for an extra $141.80.
AMC continued the designed trend for two more years – with the Cardin Javelin in 1973 and the Cassini Matador in 1974 – before retiring the upscale collaborations for good.
20. Peugeot 205 X Lacoste
Peugeot and the tennis world dates back to 1984 when he first sponsored Roland Garros, one of the essential tennis tournaments at the international level.
The 205 Lacoste was then proposed with a unique set-up characterized by different references to the world of tennis, such as the stickers placed in the rear pillars that pointed to the network of the tennis court.
Similarly, the pastel white of the bodywork and wheel covers with dark green laths and the three crocodiles recall the famous “chemise” Lacoste.
The Crocodile X Lion partnership is further celebrated in the middle of the steering wheel, where the two logos meet.
I hope you enjoyed this very different kind of fast fashion.
The automotive industry and the fashion industry both rarely have anything in common.
One concept, however, is found quite often in both teams, the concept of ‘limited edition,’ as a lucrative way of elevating the brand value.
Now it’s your turn…
Which one of these collaborations is your favorite and why?
Are there any other luxury cars and fashion brand collaborations I’ve missed in this list?
Comments below, please!