Shannons has launched a new documentary series, interviewing and exploring the work of Australia’s leading automotive designers, while featuring incredible footage of their teams at work.
The series, titled ‘Design to Driveway’, is streaming online and the first two episodes are already live, running 22 and 27 minutes respectively. You can see them at the bottom of this story, so grab a snack and kick your feet up – it’s good to see.
In the first episode, Host Warren Brown talks to Leo Perneau, the American-born designer responsible for the 1965 Chevy Impala and – after the move to GM’s Australian business at Holden – the Statesman Caprice (inspired by Rolls-Royce and Aston Martin, of course).
As well as its face on the first-generation VB Commodore and VK, Pruneau was also the designer behind the iconic LE Monaro coupe – partly through an unusual coincidence, as you’ll discover in the video.
Although Leo Perneau retired from Holden in 1988, he says “I couldn’t get petrol out of my blood”.
In the second episode, The Shannons step into the great automotive division to descend on the blue oval to talk to David Ford (not related!), the product planner and honorary ‘designer at heart’ who helped shape and introduce the XR Falcon. Helped – later in 1967, by Fred Gibson to Ford’s first Bathurst victory.
David later made significant contributions to the next-generation Falcon models, XA through XC, and the XD body, while also leading the creation of the Australian Fairlane.
“Shannons is proud to launch this historic series to celebrate the rich design heritage of the cars we all know and love. While Shannons key role as Australia’s leading insurer for motoring enthusiasts We also believe it is important to preserve our automotive history for future generations,” said Mark Behr, Executive Manager, Marketing for Shannons.
Watch An episode And Episode two of the seven-part series below, and keep an eye out for more episodes airing each week.
Episode 1: Leo Pruneau
Episode 2: David Ford
- Episode 3: Dennis Nicolle – Chrysler Australia/Mitsubishi Australia Designer Premieres on 30 October
- Episode 4: Phil Zmood – Holden Chief Designer premieres on November 6
- Episode 5: David Hardy – Leyland Australia Designer Premieres on November 13
- Episode 6: Graham Wadsworth – Ford Australia Designer Premieres 20 November
- Episode 7: Richard Furlazzo – Holden Chief Designer premieres on November 27