Infiniti Prototype 9

Infiniti Prototype 9Yet this coming week, Infiniti and its leader, Roland Krueger, will present a mythological Infiniti race car from a non-existent past right square in the middle of the year’s most elevated celebration of automotive heritage and achievement, the Pebble Beach Concours and Rolex Motorsports Reunion at Laguna Seca Raceway.

Experiencing it is the point. It’s a distillation of late 1930s cues and configurations, most of which lasted into the late 1950s, until Cooper’s lightweight, mid-engined machines changed the way European racing machines in the top rank were constructed.

And it’s not just the long nose, spoked wheels and massive front grille that pay homage — the prototype was even built using traditional techniques. Inside, of course, it’s very much the product of 2017 know-how.

Creating an electric-powered driver’s car with retro styling, an antique suspension, and vintage tires might seem incongruous for a 21st-century automaker that’s not yet 30 years old. But that’s the whole point of the Prototype 9, Albaisa says, pointing out that technology won’t always stir the soul when it comes to automobiles. “We always dream about the future, but this time we dreamed about the past.”

Infiniti Prototype 9

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