Renato “Sonny” Levi was born on September 9, 1926, in Karachi, and died on November 12, 2016.
He was an Indian boat designer.
He was known for creating powerboats for the Aga Khan, the Shah of Iran, and Richard Branson.
He came from a family that had fled fascism in Italy, but he was educated in France and Darjeeling.
Levi learned about boat design in his uncle’s boat-design business Afco in Bombay.
Levi relocated to England in 1944 and became a pilot in Spitfires with the Royal Air Force.
Following the demobilisation, Levi founded his own boatyard in Anzio in 1960.
Levi invented a surface propulsion system which increased speed and reduced drag and was installed on Richard Branson’s Virgin Atlantic Challenger II.
In 1986 Levi was appointed a Royal Designer for Industry.
Sonny Levi passed away at 90 years old.