a tribute to pio manzu fiat 127 concept by david obendorfer
a tribute to pio manzu   fiat 127 concept by david obendorfer a tribute to pio manzu   fiat 127 concept by david obendorfer
mar 19, 2013

a tribute to pio manzu fiat 127 concept by david obendorfer

a tribute to pio manzu – ‘fiat 127 concept’ by david obendorferfiat 127 (1971) vs. fiat 127 conceptimages courtesy david obendorfer



designed according to the stylistic canons of the 1970s, the resurrection of pio manzù’s fiat 127 is quite risky: the original model was one of the first truly innovative cars of the 70s designed to be rational in style with clean volumes and pure, simple lines. the danger of creating a car already seasoned at birth, as it were, with an imperceptible nostalgic effect is that it may not be particularly attractive. with this being said, designer david obendorfer tries to unite the past and future in one car of updated proportions and boasting with the unique combination forms influened by the model launched in 1971 with high-tech solutions such as a multifunctional touch screen in the center of the dashboard.


enlarged in size compared to the original model, the fiat 127 concept is based on the fiat punto-alfa mito platform. 
the minimalist interior follows the same rational concept featuring nostalgic elements that give a strong personality to the dashboard. the circular vents in the center, the chrome handles and the design of the two-spoke steering wheel are clear references to the first 127 model.



nostalgic concept of a b-segment-hatchback inspired by the legendary 127

modern interpretation of pio manzù’s fiat 127 with updated proportions

exterior renderings

exterior renderings

exterior renderings

exterior renderings

high performance abarth version

abarth 127 concept

minimalist-nostalgic interior with voice command system and multifunctional touch screen


 design sketches for the fiat 127 concept



designboom has received this project from our ‘DIY submissions‘ feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.

  • Awesome! I’ld love to see this one on the road.

    Chris says:
  • great job. The 500 for the boys!

    pg says:
  • the rear is quite successful as is the profile, but the front end seems a bit trite

    dbkii says:
  • it looks like a little porsche cayenne….. 😉

    cc says:
  • beautiful!

    pedra says:
  • perde molto delle idee originali, non all’altezza del mito… molto lontana, il muso bocciato (corregete ortografia note schizzi “fari inclinati verso INDIETRO”!! torna a scuola prima di voler riprendere miti del design) come anche la diagonale posteriore non centra nulla con la “madre”… nel mondo di oggi non ha collocazione, non aggiunge nulla alla punto o alla panda o alla mito, ma di tutte ha meno. Il rilancio di modelli del genere deve essere molto studiato nel ri-posizionamento non e’ solo design, se poi anche quello zoppica.. ahia!!

    giancarlo says:
  • Cool, cool, cool! But, I am waiting for new 128 sport coupe concept, any news?

    aleksamov says:
  • Volkswagen Fox.

    nelsondreyes architect says:
  • Very good

    Edgar Navarro design says:
  • Congratulations, i am still shaking, i had several FIAT 127 during my life, we own a 1975 one and as soon as i saw this project i thought, let them give wings to Mr. David Obendorfer create a real one and please, don’t let this project die in the paper, this is one of my dreams… If they made a 500, the new Mini, The Beattle, why the hell not a FIAT 127??? Can i make a suggestion, please? This first model of 127 had a square license plate, off course you have thought of that..
    One again Thank you for a dream come true, i pray that this comes out of the paper, congratulations and once again Thank you

    José Fernandes says:
  • Well done on tsketches! But the 3D didn’t catch the design spirit enough.

    ot says:
  • Bravo !!!

    patrizio locatelli rossi says:
  • ooooh please Fiat, make this car i beg you.

    Mark says:
  • Very nice presentation, I love the attention for detail. Okay now just upload it to the FIAT-online-car-print-service and order one. If LEGO can do it why not FIAT?

    Robin says:
  • I just LOVE this fantastic concept car!! So pure, nothing “over” designed, reflecting the exact feeling the previous 127 had!
    FIAT, I recommend to take this author / car, serious for future strategies!

    Sander says:
  • That’s what I call good design ! Good Job.

    Dav says:
  • idea interessante,ma da rivedere.il posizionamento all’interno del mercato potrebbe essere in sostituzione alla punto,non credo minimamente alla sopravvivenza del progetto in coesistenza(come la panda e la 500 per essere chiari).il posteriore è un giustissimo omaggio,ma il frontale è da rivedere,nel senso che deve essere riprogettato totalmente per essere appetibile nel 21° secolo.oggettivamente alcune linee sono state riviste e studiate,ma alcuni progetti(come la riedizione delle aDS citroen erano impraticabili,e alla fine hanno fatto anche uno spot che dichiarava pubblicamente:”non si capisce tutto questo bisogno di nostalgia e voglia di retrò”,ovvero la volpe e l’uva) semplicemente non sfondano.inoltre grande pecca è l’abitabilità interna,ponendo mito e punto in profilo si noti come la linea del parabrezza è identica o quasi,non si capisce la necessità di porre in questa neo-127 un parabrezza quasi a ghigliottina.interessante la versione “ABARTH”,ma bisogna decisamente tornare sul tavolo da disegno.

    pino79 says:
  • Great design – loved the original 127 and this does it justice. I am sure though that the eurocrats would want front and rear bumpers attached. As it stands the current bumpers are the front grille and the rear apex of the boot.

    Steve says:
  • As a 127 owner, I Wish You good luck to make it Real!

    cseuztompi says:
  • Hi,

    I would propose to check current Corporate Design Language or Future (if it is possible) of FIAT and just when you do that, start with your redesign. Don’t get me wrong, this what you have done is looking retro and more and less nice for my point of view, but beside curved form of the old 127 and nice renderings I do not see you contribution.

    all in all good try.



    Antonie says:
  • Love everything but the front end…the lights just don’t seem to work

    Mark says:
  • Good Job

    mohamed says:
  • Antonie, what should he check the current Corporate Design Language or Future of FIAT check for? To come up with just another piece of ugly crap you see on the roads today? Mr. Obendorfer’s contribution is finally creating a beautiful car and if that is not in line with FIAT’s CDL or F, than that tells you more about FIAT than about Mr. Obendorfer.

    Kuroneko says:
  • Bellissima. L’operazione di riprodurre miti del passato può essere discutibile ma se ben fatta funziona. Mini, 500 e Mustang lo dimostrano e del resto Porsche semplicemnte non ha mai smesso, in definitiva si tratta quindi di riprendere un filo interroto che forse si poteva evitare di interromepere. Certo chi come Mercedes Audi e Bmw e’ capace di continuare a produrre nuovi miti contemporanei non ha bisogno di ricorrere ad operazioni del genere.
    Comunque sia sarebbe bello vederla per strada, strano che i soli commenti negativi siano italiani!

    Carlo says:
  • @Antonie, You are? A.) Designchef at FIAT. B.) A student who is told to many times to make his own contribution in a design. C.) A frustrated designer who thinks he knows best with a bad need to show it. D.) Blind. First of all it is clearly a retro design so your own contribution as a designer is limited by the fact it is retro. Like the 500 this 127 has it’s own design features that give the car it’s own caracter and it needs no future FIAT-dna. Between reading the old design and drawing the new one is where the contribution takes place. It can be done wrong but in this case the choices were made right. Redesign is not needed. There are many ways to redesign. You could made a redesign of the concept of the 127 like they did with the Renault 4 competition. But this choise is up to you.

    Robin says:
  • Hi Kuroneko,

    Thanks for your comment.
    I am not so sure that I fully understand what you wanted to say, namely, for my point of view generalization is not good.
    I do respect any person work and contribution in any field, but that doesn’t mean that I like all of them.

    Hi Robin,
    first of all thank you for your attention and time you have used for my comment. I do respect your opinion, but I can not say that I am agreeing with you. When you learn to respect others people opinion and not to attack everything you are not agree with, I will be very glad to answer to all of your questions. Thank you for understanding.



    Antonie says:
  • eccellente restyling..

    bsdes says:
  • Its very nice.

    henno says:
  • I am sorry but for me it looks to “same” and kind of “old”. This new concept design of fiat 127 would fit and look great in1990-´s, but today I would expect more “innovative” approach from the designer. Take f.ex. a look at the “Designboom” competition results for redesign of “Renault 4” and you will feel the difference.

    bujarb says:
  • IMPRESIONANTE, ojala FIAT cambiara en PUNTO por esta nueva reedicion del 127 , en ITALIA y en ESPAÑA seguro seria un exito

    chenano says:
  • Beautiful, I have one 127 in the garage, and I would like to have this concept one day. Please FIAT give this concept life, I will be one of the buyers.

    Tom says:
  • Sarebbe un’ottima idea,riproporre la 127! Naturalmente il mio è un desiderio “emozionale” perchè,leggendo quanto scrivono nei commenti alcuni specialisti della critica fatua,sarebbe uno sbaglio rifarla. Loro se ne intendono…

    Alberto says:
  • Salve a tutti,
    premetto che non sono un esperto ma un amante delle buone idee. Al giorno d’oggi partore un’idea e creare un progetto che arriva agli occhi di tutti e’ da apprezzare. L’idea di ridisegnare come “Tributo” il modello 127 della Fiat non e’ da criticare nei dettagli ma va promosso nel quadro complessivo come uno “starting” verso una nuova riproposizione di un nuovo modello 127. E’ scontato, pertanto, che l’azienda FIAT (o un’altra nel mondo…) possa prendere spunto da questa idea e prima di creare un prototipo “REALE” devono per forza essere percorsi e superati con successo tutte le tappe necessarie affinche’ il prodotto finale sia conforme alle aspettaative del mercato (Sondaggi di mercato, sicurezza, comfort, analisi dei costi di produzione, ecc…). Ringrazio il Signor Obendorfer per aver condiviso con noi questa emozione (perché il senso sia principalmente questo) e auguro un buon lavoro a lui e a tutti gli altri disegnatori.

    Roberto da Giarre (CT-Italy) says:
  • fossi fiat, chiamerei questo designer e metterei allo studio questo progetto..certo magari qualche dettaglio quà e la da limare ma nel complesso un gran bel progetto..great great job!

    ormonello says:
  • wonderfull

    Fernando Castelo says:
  • i love it! Beautiful concepts.:D

    mirtohidrazavi says:
  • I am not impressed at all. I don’t like it.
    It reminded me when they made the first attempt to re-design the Fiat 500. The model Cinquecento was not a great design at all. We had to wait few more years and you can see how the new 500 is now again a myth…a fantastic design proud of the first model.
    This is probably the first remake of the 127 but I think they need to work harder to make it good and desirable.
    Not my car right now!

    Barbara Salvadori says:
  • bella

    oscar says:
  • well done design. I haven’t seen the old 127 until now, but I am real fan of retro cars of 70-80s’. More and more I got disappointed by all the modern car designs, too curvy, too fancy. The auto industry needs to refresh its memory from the past – simplicity and genius. So this 127 holds great spirit of the past. I can only criticize the front end. I would like to see more shark like nose of the front design, as well as instead of the “line” LED lights, better front lights are “square” LED.

    pluck says:
    I Love it.

    Yoram says:
  • Great job! BUT, from my point of view, I could point what I see as a identity loss on this redesign. Well, you see, on the old one, a remarking aspect is the “lifted” front, with the square shaped headlights. Seems that you decided to kill this aspect completely, giving it an “edgy” front for the sake of a more aggressive aspect.
    As you may agree, this FIAT was never ever intended to look like an agreessive/powerful/fast car. So, the lack of aerodynamics on the original design is justifyable as a conceptual identity.

    Well… The side and rear is flawless, though! 🙂 (I’m brazilian, so sorry for any grammar mistakes)

    shiran duarte says:
  • all I can think is what if he would have redesigned the MK1 Volkswagen Golf instead.

    Brandon says:
  • Precioso diseño,quiero otro 127 llevo 35 años esperando para tener otro 127.

    Antonio Varela says:
  • Fantastic work! I would LOVE to see it in the flesh one day…. Regards.

    sam raciti says:
  • nice concept, but the back is far better than the front. with some reworking i think it’ll be perfect. 😉

    matteo says:
  • Che spettacolo!
    you have recreated in a modern key a fiat myth! I think Fiat should take in serious consideration your project, it may reach the same success than the new 500!

    Francesco says:
  • I want it now !

    David says:
  • This is a model from fiat that people wil buy.
    Make this car an i buy it.
    Great cardisigner

    Gerrit from holland says:
  • Very nice, you should also speak about the other works of Obendorfer for Fiat, especially the 500 Coupe in red. Greetings, see you soon.

    Laurent says:

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