Penned by Giorgetto Giugiaro, as a concept car, appointed a production car by the management at Arese before being industrialised and built by Pininfarina, who also looked after the interior design, and everything conducted in cooperation with the Alfa Romeo Style Centre. The story of the Brera is a fairly complex one and Silvia Baruffaldi has looked at it with Wolfgang Egger, head of design at Alfa, with Giugiaro himself and with Guglielmo Cartia, chief designer for interiors at Pininfarina. As already mentioned in the Design story article for the Alfa 159 (see A&D No. 154), the coupé-concept presented by Italdesign Giugiaro at Geneva in March 2002 became the head of a family of four cars: the 159 saloon and Sportwagon, the Brera coupé and its Spider variant. “These are cars with very different configurations and proportions, two much sportier than the others. With the Brera we wanted to create a car in its own right, a “2+2” with luggage room”, explains Egger.
According to Giorgetto Giugiaro, “the original design of the Brera was maintained but it was applied to a different architecture because the mechanicals were different. The production Brera has a front engine, whereas in the prototype it was front-mid mounted”.
The bodywork of the Brera is effectively a new suit that has had to be tailored to fit an interior that was already defined and is, in part, shared with the 159 saloon. There are three dominating themes, as Guglielmo Cartia explains: “The flow of the lines, never parallel and always curved, to evoke a sensation of speed; the sensory perception of the environment, defined by Italian taste and sinuous forms, with a rich range of nuances; and the selection and matching of materials to represent the luxury of the cabin combined with sportiness”.
The article continues in Auto & Design no. 157