If you're a petrolhead you'll know about Pininfarina, the Italian design house. It's famed for producing some of the finest looking cars ever to put rubber to tarmac. Don't believe us? How's about the Ferrari F40? Or the Maserati GranTurismo?
Those not good enough for you? The Ferrari 458 Italia is our current favourite, though the Hyundai Matrix isn't to be forgotten. Neither is the Peugeot 306.
But the firm isn't only good at design, oh no. It's also fairly proficient at engineering. Pininfarina's engineering arm has created the Hybus, a hybrid bus (funnily enough) designed to combat the pollution problem in Turin.
We'll say this about the Hybus – she ain't pretty. In fact, the Hybus is a 17 year old Iveco wagon with extensive modifications.
Unlike your local bus, there's no massive diesel lump under the bonnet. Hybus packs a 1.3-litre Fiat Multijet diesel unit hitched to an electric generator which feeds a battery pack. The rear axle and driveline remains from the original, though is now driven by two Magneti Marelli 'leccy motors attached to a collector reduction gearbox.
The Hybus project isn't only Pininfarina's baby. The firm is working with GTT, a Turinese transport group, and FAAM, a battery maker.
To back up the Hybus's case, Pininfarina has worked out that retrofitting jazzy hybrid tech to older models will save around 60% on buying newer busses. No money wasted, less pollution and happier Turinians. Winners all round!