Ruben Wainberg has left us. We were advised of this on the day of his passing by Roberto Giolito, his mentor since the mid-1990s, who had noticed the talent of a young Argentinian student from what was then called the School of Applied Art (now IAAD) in Turin. It was he who recommended Wainberg for employment at the Fiat Centro Stile. Those were the years when the use of digital rendering was becoming increasingly popular. «Ruben made it his discipline, immediately proving to be very skilled in the construction of credible images», says Giolito today, who by credibility refers to the realism inherent in Wainberg’s meticulous drawings.

They worked on many projects, including the Grande Punto and the research concepts of Fiat Advanced Design, the division set up by the then Head of Style at Fiat Auto, Humberto Rodriguez, where Giolito and his team produced, among other things, the Trepiùno, a concept car from which the 500 launched in 2007 would be born. Wainberg’s drawings would be amongst those used to present the project to the board. «He always had a remarkable power of observation, with a very keen eye for the functionality of elements, hence developing a craft in dosing each element».

That same great attention to detail that Wainberg expressed in his designs for Abarth, for which he became head of design, working on the rebirth of the brand. «His drawings spoke of how a 500 was transformed into a Scorpion car, in a vision close to Carlo Abarth’s but in a modern way», continues Giolito, who in Wainberg always found a great partner for work and exchange of views, even in his current role as Head of FCA Heritage (re: the Abarth 1000 SP project).

We remember Ruben from when, while still a student, surprised us with his ability to make models entirely out of adhesive tape, the forerunner of today’s 3D printing, back then already complete in every detail. His designs will always remain with us, and with all Auto&Design readers.