BRAND

THE ELONGATED P
MORE THAN A
CENTURY OF
BRAND HISTORY

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“Pioneering innovation to stay
ahead of the game”

Marco Tronchetti Provera

CELEBRATING 140 YEARS WITH PRESIDENT NAPOLITANO

9 october 2012

The origins of a modern brand

Founded in 1872 by the young Giovanni Battista Pirelli, Pirelli & C. began diversifying its products well ahead of its time (producing insulated conductors for telegraph communications, submarine telegraph cables and a range of technical items), and investing in the promising automotive industry.

The Marca Stella Brand

Pirelli's "marca stella" bicycle tyres were a symbol of innovation and cutting edge technology. The company launched its debut car tyre, the "Ercole", in 1901.

The history of advertising

One of the first participants at the Milan Expo in 1906, Pirelli made a stylish debut in the world of graphic design, capitalising on the potential of advertising with the first billposters.

1890

1910

1910

1914

1916

1917

1917

1921

1933

1948

1953

1953

1955

1963

1998

2000

2002

2007

2008

Sporting victories

The first sporting victories confirmed the enduring success of the Pirelli brand: the 1907 Peking-Paris was a key opportunity for reputation building.

The legendary elongated P

In 1908 Pirelli adopted the elongated P logo, which came to identify the company worldwide and from then on, consolidating the brand's identity.

1906

1914

1916

1917

1920

1924

1930

1930

1945

2014

The industrial boom years

The 1920s saw the development of the innovative Cord technology, successfully applied in the most important competitions of the day (Formula 1, Rally, Superbike and Mille Miglia), and definitively associating the brand with high performance products.

The first industrial magazine

The Pirelli magazine was launched in 1948, an innovative communications tool that blended industrial culture with promotional activities.

Industrial successes

In the early 1950s Pirelli developed the revolutionary Cinturato radial tyre, still in production today, and also excelled in the cable industry, winning a contract to lay coaxial cables for the new long distance telephone network and Italian television communications.

1952: Pirelli Cinturato

1960: Pirelli Center(Gio Ponti)

The Pirelli building

Reflecting the Group's strong commitment to international expansion, 1960 saw the opening of the new headquarters in Milan, the "Pirelli Centre", in the skyscraper designed by Gio Ponti.

“The Cal”

A communications icon for more than 40 years, the Pirelli Calendar made its debut in 1964, celebrating the female form and contemporary ideals of beauty, and once more "pioneering innovation to stay ahead of the game".

Product innovation

In the 70s and 80s the "low profile" design revolutionised the very concept of the tyre, leading to the creation of the P7, a ground-breaking product for the industry.

In 1977 the first experimental telephone connection using fibre optic cable was made, and in '81 the first fibre optic telephone line was installed on the national network, between Padova and Mestre.

Planet Zero

The 1987 Sanremo Rally saw the launch of "P Zero": the new tread design set to replace the classic rain tyre was exclusively fitted on the Ferrari F40.

Industrial Design

In 2002 Pirelli decided to deploy its industrial design expertise in the world of fashion, launching the PZero project. The name chosen for the apparel brand comes directly from the tyre invented in 1987.

Formula 1™

Pirelli blazed back into F1™, signing in 2011 an important agreement as sole supplier for the 2011-2013 period, renewed for the next three years up to 2016, and continuing to invest in communications activities to promote its pioneering industrial and technological innovations for Formula 1™.