Pierluigi Alinari, one of the best known motorhome designers in Europe and the founder of a string of motorhome brands, died at the start of this month, aged 85.

Mr Alinari had only stopped working full-time in the industry in 2016, when he sold PLA, the brand which bears his initials and which he launched only after a long career working on other brands, to Rapido.

PLA’s distinctive profiles have been a significant attraction at Caravan Salon in Düsseldorf for many years. He used the success of the company to buy upmarket Italian brand Giottiline, which he also sold to Rapido.

Mr Alinari started his career in the 1980s when he bought the Italian arm of British manufacturer Caravans International, which had gone insolvent. After re-establishing that, he founded McLouis, now sold in the UK through Auto Sleepers, and eventually sold it to the now defunct SEA Group. He then went on to found Joint, which he also sold to SEA, and in the process became a director of the company, looking after Mobilvetta and Elnagh and launching new brand Dream, before retiring for the first time in 2005. 

A tribute on the Giottiline website says, “Hi Pierluigi, the journey never stops.”