The world of car collecting is going through a period of great vitality: never have there been so many exhibition fairs, trade publications and websites, bringing together enthusiasts from the world over, promoting interaction and the sharing of knowledge. The restoration of vintage vehicles is becoming increasingly like the restoration of works of art, with meticulous attention being paid to reproducing every last detail to make them just as they were originally. Vintage cars have always been a difficult area to work in as regards their tyres: even if the tyre remains intact, after some decades it may no longer meet the safety standards the car will need for its new life on the road. The Pirelli Collezione range of tyres is based on one fundamental aspect, which is that the Historical Archive of the Pirelli Foundation contains a complete technical inventory, making it possible to reproduce these tyres in full compliance with today’s construction and quality standards for road use.
Pirelli engineers thus have access to the original factory specifications, the types of materials used, and the patterns of the original moulds, as well as all the original pictures and sales documentation, from advertisements to catalogues and price lists. This legacy is not only technological but also cultural, and it has been made possible by more than a century of close collaboration between Pirelli and the most important car manufacturers around the world. For Pirelli engineers, the challenge has been to create tyres designed for levels of performance that were unthinkable back then, in modern factories using technologically advanced systems, requiring an extremely careful balance between the past and the production standards of Industry 4.0. It has required a long testing process on prototypes both indoors and, especially, out on the track, using the original vehicles for which the final product is designed. The cars concerned have been made available by collectors and enthusiasts, making it possible to carry out a global, integrated study on different vehicles.