British Library marks anniversary of Leonardo da Vinci’s death with electric hypercar tribute

The British Library has teamed up with luxury car creator Automobil Pininfarina to mark the 500th anniversary of Leonardo da Vinci’s death with a one-off version of its electric hypercar.

The Italian firm has given the new Battista a unique paint job, inspired by the work of one of the greatest painters and inventors of all time. The one-off model will go on display at the library’s ‘A Mind in Motion’ exhibition, which brings together highlights from da Vinci’s Codex notebooks.

The books, which are on display in the UK for the first time, give an insight into the mind of the Italian and reveal the inspiration behind many of his works and engineering innovations.

Luca Borgogno, design director at Pininfarina, said: “We are proud to be a part of the ‘A Mind in Motion’ exhibition because we are proud of what Italian design has brought to the world.

“Leonardo was a true Italian genius, the first person to combine the disciplines of art, design and engineering. From Leonardo in the 16th Century to Pininfarina in 2019, these principles remain strong.”

The Battista has been built by the legendary vehicle design house, who is responsible for iconic car designs such as the Alfa Romeo Spider, Lancia Gamma Coupe and countless Ferraris.

The all-electric hypercar had a challenging design brief, as it has to have classic supercar proportions, while also being able to accelerate faster than a Formula 1 car and travel 300 miles on a single charge.

Just 50 of the 150 examples being built are expected to make it to Europe, with prospective owners having to apply to own one.