1. It began at the starting line.
Carrera founder Wilhelm Anger, who once said “my sport was always a new car every year,” came up with “Carrera” while driving at high speeds in a Mercedes. The name comes from the Carrera Panamericana, a six-day race across Mexico in celebration of the new Pan-American Highway. At the time of the brand’s founding in 1956, it was the fastest, longest, and most dangerous race in the world.
2. Carrera revolutionized the sunglass industry.
Wilhelm Anger developed Optyl in the 60s. What is Optyl (and why should we care)? It’s a lightweight-yet-solid plastic used for frames — a huge improvement over the heavy plastics it replaced — that made shades appealing to both athletes seeking function and normal people wearing them for fashion. Because let’s face it, red marks on the bridge of your nose left by heavy frames will never be in fashion.
3. They’ve got a lot of gold.
Over the last half century, a slew of Olympic gold medalists have worn Carrera — as well as top racers in Formula 1, motorcycle racing, and other high-speed sports. No wonder their tagline is “Racing Since 1956.”
4. Trend setters love ‘em.
Celebrities like Brad Pitt, Kanye West, Justin Timberlake, Diddy, Jamie Fox, Usher, and Gwen Stefani are all fans of the brand. Oh, and Yoko Ono wore their 5620 wrap-around frames on the cover of Rolling Stone.
5. The best is yet to come.
Less than a decade ago, Carrera pioneered fiber helmets, which are now omnipresent in racing sports. After celebrating their 50th anniversary in 2006, the brand relaunched its iconic “Champion” and “Safari” models to outstanding success, and Carrera launched in the US in 2010. And most recently in 2012, Carrera released its 6000 series — still made in its signature Optyl — which has become one of its most popular models to date.