x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Top 5: When fashion and cars combine

A few designers cannot stop at conquering the fashion world; they want to make their mark in the automotive one as well.

The 2006 Paris Motor Show saw the collaboration between two Italian heavyweights: Lamborghini and Versace. AFP
The 2006 Paris Motor Show saw the collaboration between two Italian heavyweights: Lamborghini and Versace. AFP

A few designers cannot stop at conquering the fashion world; they want to make their mark in the automotive one as well. Some use their own, huge personal wealth to build a collection of some of the world's rarest classic cars, while others team with a car maker to develop exclusive models they hope will appeal to a more discerning buyer - with mixed success

Ralph Lauren

In the January edition of Vanity Fair, the magazine had access to the fashion designer Ralph Lauren's private car collection. For years, Lauren had his cars scattered across his many homes, but when the collection went past 60 he decided to house them in one place. DADs garage - named after his children David, Andrew and Dylan - has two floors of classic Porsches, Ferraris, Morgans, Bugattis and other marques. The reason he collects cars, rather than art? "You can't drive a painting."

Victoria Beckham

It may infuriate people to describe Victoria Beckham as a fashion designer, but she has designed clothes and that is good enough for Motoring. Beckham launched the Range Rover Evoque at a show hosted by Vogue magazine and was appointed creative design executive at the celebrity-filled bash. Beckham told the garden party: "The classic British heritage of Range Rover and the effortless style, quality and beauty is something I truly admire and also what I hope to achieve with my own brand."

Gucci

The 1972 AMC Hornet was one of the first cars to offer a special luxury package from a fashion designer. The Gucci Sportabout, with Gucci emblems on the beige upholstery, was a success, with more than 2,000 models produced in 1972 and 1973. This was not the only Gucci foray into the auto world. In 1979 a Miami-based aftermarket company offered the Cadillac Seville by Gucci edition and in 1989 Ford planned to release a Gucci Series Lincoln Town Car, though it was never produced.

Versace

The 2006 Paris Motor Show saw the collaboration between two Italian heavyweights: Lamborghini and Versace. The only differences between the standard Murcielago LP640 and the Versace edition were purely cosmetic. Only 20 of the limited edition supercars were made; 10 white "Isis" versions and 10 of the black "Nero Aldebaran" edition. The seats in the supercar were made from Napa leather with the Versace stitch pattern. Buyers also got a watch from the Versace Precious Items department.

Alfred Dunhill

Only 78 of the planned 150, 1999 Aston Martin DB7 Alfred Dunhill FH coupes rolled off the production line. The luxury features added to the Alfred Dunhill model included a humidor for the world's finest cigars (non smokers could opt for a grooming kit), a special edition clock, charcoal leather seats, chrome trim and a metallic silver paintjob. The few buyers of the special edition - which included the former footballer Ian Wright - were treated to a matching luggage set of Alfred Dunhill in the boot.