Top 15 Italian Car Brands (Active and Defunt)

Italy is regarded as the “home of sports cars.” Italy’s auto industry has developed a unique style as the birthplace of world-famous car brands like Ferrari, Maserati, and Lamborghini. Italian sports cars have a reputation for being both classy and thrilling, and they are adored by automobile fans all over the world. Additionally, Italy is a major hub for designing and manufacturing automobiles worldwide.

Italy’s automotive sector is dominated by Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA), which owns Fiat, Lancia, Ferrari (currently, Ferrari operates independently of FCA), Maserati, and Alfa Romeo. Italian automakers today produce a wide range of vehicles, from ultra-compact city cars (Fiat) to luxury sports cars and supercars like Ferrari, Lamborghini, and Pagani.

Let’s have a look at the most famous Italian car brands of all time:

Supercar Brands:

Pagani and Mazzanti are the most popular supercar brands in Italy and offer some of the most opulent supercars, which are loved by car enthusiasts all over the world:


Source: automarken-liste
  • Founded: 1992
  • Founder: Horacio Pagani
  • Headquarters: San Cesario sul Panaro, MO, Italy

Pagani is a supercar manufacturer famous for creating high-performance, limited-edition hypercars. Its creator dreamed of supercars since childhood and built a Formula 3 car at the age of 21. After seeing Horacio’s work, five-time world champion Juan Manuel Fangio recommended him to three major companies.

As a result, he was hired by the Automobili Lamborghini plant, where he suggested employing carbon instead of lightweight plastic. He established the composite materials company Pagani Composite Research to carry out his projects.

Horacio built the Pagani Automobili plant in the 1990s after planning to create his supercar. He unveiled the first version, which he called the Zonda, in 1999. It quickly became one of the world’s most desired supercars around the world.


Source: motorage
  • Founded: 2002
  • Founder: Luca Mazzanti
  • Headquarters: Italy

Mazzanti Automobili is an Italian manufacturer known for its high-performance, handcrafted vehicles. It was started by Luca Mazzanti and Walter Faralli as Faralli & Mazzanti in Gello di Pontedera (PI) in 2002.

It was split into “Mazzanti Automobili” and “Faralli Restauri” in 2010 after starting as a laboratory for supercar development and restoration workshops. The coupé model, known as the Mazzanti Evantra, helped bring international attention to the company due to its inclusion in the Museum of Tuscan Design’s (Mu.De.To) official collection.

Mazzanti Evantra was shown at the 2013 “Top Marques Monaco Show,” and Sony Computer Entertainment chose it for its “Driveclub” driving game. The main markets for the company are Europe, Russia, China, and the United Arab Emirates.

Luxury Sports Car Brands:

Italy is home to some of the world’s most coveted luxury sports car brands. From sleek designs to exhilarating performances, these Italian marques continue to redefine the boundaries of automotive luxury.


Source: flickr
  • Founded: 1947
  • Founder: Enzo Ferrari
  • Headquarters: Maranello, Italy

When we think of famous Italian sports cars, the first name that comes to mind is Ferrari. Enzo Ferrari started the company in 1939 as Auto Avio Costruzioni from Alfa Romeo’s racing section. In 1940, the company made its first car. However, the first Ferrari-badged vehicle was produced in 1947, which is considered the company’s official beginning as a car manufacturer.

Ferrari was named the most powerful brand in the world in 2014 by Brand Finance. The brand embodies everything a sports car should be. They create exquisitely crafted automobiles with interiors that are polished to a high standard and have a lot of power.


Source: ali6
  • Founded: 1963
  • Founder: Ferruccio Lamborghini
  • Headquarters: Sant’Agata Bolognese, Italy

This modern Italian automaker was founded in the 1960s to compete with fellow luxury sports cars, Maserati and Ferrari. After Chrysler lost control of the brand in the early 1990s, Volkswagen bought it in 1998, and the brand has kept its good name ever since. The Volkswagen Group owns the company through its subsidiary Audi.

In 2001, this Italian car company was proud to announce the arrival of the Murcielago, one of the most famous luxury sports cars of the 21st century. After that, model production was discontinued in favor of the Aventador or the more recent Huracan. Today, the name is synonymous with luxury and style. It makes cars for wealthy people and focuses on being exclusive.


Source: issam
  • Founded: Dec 01, 1914
  • Founder: Alfieri Maserati
  • Headquarters: Modena, Italy

Maserati was started by the Maserati brothers, Bindo, Alfiero, Ettore, and Ernesto, in 1914. Their interest in cars was sparked when their older brother, Carlo, built a combustion engine for a motorized bicycle and raced it. Carlo died of tuberculosis in 1910, before his brothers went into business together and saw the success of their family name attached to some of the most powerful and famous racing and sports cars.

They established their own company in 1914, but it took them another 12 years to develop the first Gran Prix 1500 sports automobile. After that, Maserati began producing racing vehicles specifically for use in racing events. All of that changed in the 1960s when management chose to focus exclusively on luxury automobiles.

Alfa Romeo:

Source: designmoteur
  • Founded: 24 June 1910
  • Founder: Nicola Romeo, Ugo Stella, Alexandre Darracq
  • Headquarters: Turin, Italy

The name of the company is a combination of the original name, Anonima Lombarda Fabbrica Automobili (A.L.F.A. ), and the last name of entrepreneur Nicola Romeo, who took over the company in 1915. It was owned by the Italian state-holding company Istituto per la Ricostruzione Industriale from 1932 until 1986 when it joined the Fiat group.

In February 2007, the Alfa Romeo brand became Alfa Romeo Automobiles S.p.A., a part of Fiat Group Automobiles, which is now Fiat Chrysler Automobiles Italy. Alfa Romeo has become synonymous with motor racing, and the brand has won more races than any other in the world. The GTV model, which made its debut in the 1990s, is among this brand’s top sports vehicles.

Other Active Italian Brands:

There are many other active brands in Italy producing one of the most powerful and iconic cars of all time. Let’s have a look at them:


Source: autocb
  • Founded: Jul 11, 1899
  • Founder: Giovanni Agnelli
  • Headquarters: Turin, Italy

The largest car producer in Italy, Fiat Automobiles S.p.A., is a subsidiary of FCA Italy S.p.A., a division of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles. It produces cars under the Fiat brand. This old company was established in 1899 and produced a wide range of equipment, including tractors, railroad carriages, and military aircraft.

The corporation now focuses on commercial vehicles and has industrial facilities spread throughout the world. Fiat is best renowned for the wide range of models it has created over the years and for holding onto its distinctive brand identity despite several issues. The brand enjoys a solid reputation for building stylish and cost-effective automobiles that draw in a variety of buyers.


Source: topcarnews
  • Founded: 1906
  • Founder: Vincenzo Lancia
  • Headquarters: Turin, Italy

The brand was named after Vincenzo Lancia, one of the company’s founders and a famous racer. He started the production facility in 1906 with his friend Claudio Foggiolino, and the first Lancia vehicles appeared in the marketplace in 1907. The blue Lancia symbol is designed as a shield, and inside it is a steel steering wheel bearing the company’s name.

The company became well-known after Lancia engineers made the first load-bearing body in the history of the automotive industry. This manufacturer is still going strong, turning out midrange vehicles that are fast, highly safe, and very comfortable. Currently, the Fiat Group owns the brand.


  • Founded: 1949
  • Founder: Carlo Abarth
  • Headquarters: Turin, Italy

The Italian automaker Abarth was established in 1949 and produced both street-legal and racing vehicles. The company is like the “Mini Cooper” of Italy and makes some of the best small race and road cars. Fiat owns it, and most of the cars made by the company have the “Fiat” logo.

The Abarth 595, a sporty and potent hatchback, is the company’s best-seller and a shining example of the brand’s reputation for producing powerful and gorgeous automobiles. The Abarth Punto Supersport was the last car the company produced in 2012, marking a long period of inactivity for the brand. Its logo is shaped like a shield, representing strength, power, and perseverance.


Source: ameblo
  • Founded: 1930
  • Founder: Battista Farina
  • Headquarters: Cambiano, Italy

Carozzeria Pininfarina, often known as Pininfarina S.p.A., is an Italian coachbuilder and automotive design company located in Cambiano, Italy. It was established in 1930 by Battista “Pinin” Farina. Pininfarina S.p.A. was purchased by Mahindra Group on December 14, 2015, for approximately 168 million euros ($185 million).

After World War II, Pininfarina entered the overseas market while also collaborating with the major domestic automakers. Many major automakers have hired Pininfarina to create vehicle designs for them. These companies have long-standing relationships with customers, including Ferrari, Alfa Romeo, Peugeot, FIAT, GM, Lancia, and Maserati. In 2019, the company released its electric hypercar, Pininfarina Battista, named after the founder of the famous brand.


Source: cgtrader
  • Founded: 1987
  • Founder: Leonardo Fioravanti
  • Headquarters: Turin, Italy

When it comes to the realm of automotive design, one name stands out among the rest: Fioravanti. This Italian design and engineering company has left an indelible mark on the automotive industry with its visionary concepts and groundbreaking designs. The company began as an architectural firm serving Japanese clients and shifted its focus to automobile design in 1991.

Leonardo Fioravanti started Fioravanti after spending twenty-four years working with Pininfarina on vehicles such as the Ferrari Daytona, Ferrari Dino, Ferrari 512 Berlinetta Boxer, Ferrari 308 GTB, and Ferrari 288 GTO. In 1994, the company unveiled its first vehicle. It was the Sensiva Fioravanti.

Defunct Italian Car Brands:

There are many Italian car brands that are no longer in business and have been declared defunct. Let’s have a look at them:


Source: motor1
  • Founded: 1912
  • Founder: Giovanni Bertone
  • Headquarters: Turin, Italy
  • Defunct: 2014

Gruppo Bertone, also known as Bertone, was an Italian automaker with a focus on coachbuilding, style, and production. Bertone designs stood out from the crowd, with most vehicles sharing a remarkable “family resemblance” despite wearing multiple brand badges.

Bertone has designed automobiles for a variety of manufacturers, including Abarth, Alfa Romeo, Aston Martin, Citroen, Ferrari, Fiat, Iso, Lancia, Lamborghini, Mercedes Benz, Opel, and Volvo. In 2014, the design subsidiary of Stile Bertone went bankrupt. The stylized letter “b” logo and the brand rights currently belong to a number of business owners.


Source: Pinterest / Sholto Stewart
  • Founded: 1955
  • Headquarters: Milan, Italy
  • Defunct: 1995

Autobianchi, a name that evokes a sense of nostalgia and admiration among automotive enthusiasts, holds a special place in the history of Italian car manufacturing. Autobianchi was a joint project of Fiat, Pirelli, and Bianchi.

Born out of a collaboration between three iconic Italian brands, Autobianchi crafted a range of stylish and innovative vehicles showcasing the quintessential Italian charm and engineering ingenuity.

The brand’s symbol was a big black triangle that was cut in half and marked with a dark line. After the brand was dissolved in 1995, Autobianchi vehicles continued to be sold in Italy until 1996. After that, it was taken over by Lancia.


Source: sgs-engineering
  • Founded: 1947
  • Founder: Daniel Mastretta
  • Headquarters: Milan, Italy
  • Defunct: 1997

Innocenti, a name that carries the legacy of Italian craftsmanship and design, holds a special place in the annals of automotive history. The company was involved in the manufacture of automobiles, motorbikes, machine tools, and presses.

Innocenti released its first vehicle under its own name in 1960. It was a convertible sports car. The company merged with the Fiat Corporation in the 1990s. In 1997, the brand’s new owner liquidated it and ceased production of all Innocenti models. The logo of the defunct company had a large “i” enclosed in a black ring.


Source: mundocompresor
  • Founded: 1953
  • Founder: Renzo Rivolta
  • Headquarters: Bresso, Italy
  • Defunct: 1974

Iso was a brand of cars and motorcycles produced by Iso Autoveicoli S.p.A. of Italy. It began by selling heaters, then shifted to selling two-wheeled automobiles. The company was most active from the late 1940s to the early 1970s. Iso was known by different names at different times, but it was called Iso Motors right before it shut down in 1974.

In 1962, the company narrowed its product line to include only cars for the public as a whole. Iso is known for making the famous bubble car Isetta in the 1950s and a number of powerful sports cars in the 1960s and early 1970s. The business shut down its factories in 1974 for various socioeconomic factors.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Here are some frequently asked questions about Italian car brands:

How many Italian brands are there?

The most recent information indicates that there are over a hundred different automaker brands in Italy, albeit many of them are relatively unknown.

What is the most popular Italian car?

In 2020 and 2021, the best-selling city car, the Fiat Panda, was named the best car in Europe.

Are Italian cars reliable?

Italian cars are known for their exceptional performance and style, but their reliability can vary. Some Italian car brands have a reputation for being less reliable compared to their counterparts from other countries.


The realm of Italian car brands is a testament to the nation’s rich automotive heritage, design ingenuity, and engineering excellence. As the automotive landscape evolves, Italian car brands continue to play a vital role in shaping the industry.

With a decades-long legacy, these 15 famous Italian car brands have captured the hearts and imaginations of car enthusiasts worldwide. We have compiled a list of the most famous 15 Italian car brands and hope this will serve as a good guide for anyone looking for Italian Cars.

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