Lancia, Alfa Romeo and Abarth will all be taking part in Milano AutoClassica 2016, which takes place next weekend and is reagrded as one of the most important events on the classic car calendar, with a comprehensive and exciting line-up of classic and current production models.
The spotlight will be trained on Lancia, that will be presenting fifteen past models to celebrate the brand's 110th anniversary on November 27. The theme will be dealt with in detail in the press conference on November 25, during which Roberto Giolito - FCA Head of Heritage EMEA - will be introducing the models on display and illustrating the certification and restoration services offered by the newly established Lancia Classiche programme.
The possibility for Alfa Romeo, Fiat and Lancia classic car owners to request a "Certificate of Origin" for their cars online will be announced in occasion of the event in Milan.
To celebrate the sixtieth anniversary of the Veloce badge, that appeared for the first time on an Alfa Romeo in 1956, visitors will see two great classics, an Alfa Romeo Giulietta Sprint Veloce and a Giulia Sprint GT Veloce, both from private collections, in addition to a new Giulia Veloce, presented for the first time in Italy after the international launch at the Paris Motor Show.
Under the sign of the scorpion, a classic Fiat 124 Abarth Rally Gr.4 will be on show in Milan by the side of the new Abarth 124 spider and an Abarth 695 Biposto.
The possibility for Alfa Romeo, Fiat and Lancia classic car owners to request a "Certificate of Origin" for their cars online will be announced in occasion of the event in Milan.
"Milano AutoClassica" is an unmissable opportunity to admire a selection of fifteen gems from the Lancia vintage car collection. The cars - some of which are authentic milestones in automotive history - will be on display in the central hall to celebrate the 110th anniversary of the establishment of the brand in Turin, which falls on November 27.
The important occasion is the perfect opportunity to introduce the new Lancia Classiche programme at the press conference on November 25, just one year after the launch of sister project Abarth Classiche.
From the beginning of December, Lancia vintage car owners will also be offered certification and restoration services activated at the FCA Heritage "Officine Classiche" at the Mirafiori plant and obtain a "Certificate of Authenticity". New opportunities offered by the manufacturer include "Certificates of Origin" which can be requested online that will contribute to boosting the value of classic Lancia cars. The project will later be extended to the other Italian FCA brands.
The line-up of gems from the Lancia Collection could not but start from the first car made by Turin-based auto maker: the 12 HP or Tipo 51. The model was presented at the Turin Motor Show in January 1908 and was available in four body styles: Double Phaeton, Coupe, Landaulet and Limousine (the one destined for AutoClassica). The official code, 12 HP, indicates the tax horsepower and was replaced by the name Alfa, which is the name this model goes by today, in 1919, when the brother of founder Vincenzo Lancia suggested to use the letters of the Greek alphabet to identify the various models, starting from the first. Fitted with a two-block 2545 cc front engine with four-speed gearbox and drive shaft, the car had top speed of 90 kilometres per hour. A total of 108 copies of the car were made, in addition to the 4 or 5 Alpha Sport, the lighter models made for racing.
Lambda Torpedo Ballon (1925)
The success obtained by the first cars that had gained a firm footing on the luxury product market encouraged Lancia to introduce a premium model at a more affordable price. So, the Lambda, which is considered Vincenzo Lancia's masterpiece together with the Aprilia, was introduced in 1922. It was the first standard production model to have a unitised body that integrated the structural functions of the chassis to increase overall rigidity in addition obviously containing weight. A further particularity of the project was the introduction of a lowered floor with cavity (tunnel) for containing the drive shaft. As a result of its rational design, the Torpedo version of the car weighed about 850 kilograms. The traditional straight-four engine arrangement was replaced by a narrow-V which considerably reduced its overall length.
Features worth noting are the independent wheel front suspension and the brakes on the four wheels controlled simultaneously by the pedal for the first time. On show is a fifth series model - the first with four-speed gearbox - with "Ballon", a pre-fabricated roof placed on the open-top vehicle to conveniently turn a Torpedo into a sedan.
Production of the Trikappa, the Lancia flagship, ended in 1925 leaving the Lambda alone in representing the brand on the luxury market. This inspired the creation of a new model exclusively on demand fitted with a V8, like the Trikappa, with the goal of conquering the attractive American market. The result was the Dilambda launched in 1928, with a new chassis made of particularly rigid closed section welded metal sheet elements. The engine, with a displacement of about 4 litres, picked up the narrow-V8 architecture of the Trikappa, upped to 3800 rpm capable of delivering a power of 100 HP and touching a respectable top speed of 120 km/h. Appropriately re-dimensioned for its weight, the front independent wheel suspension and braking system was carried over from the Lambda. The car on show has a six-window sedan body. An interesting style element are the front light clusters the shape of which evokes that of the Lancia badge.
Created at the same time as the smaller Artena to replace the Lambda, the Astura broke with the Lancia tradition, starting from the name which suggested Italian roots instead of being a Greek letter (in tune with the nationalistic trends of the day). It was named after an ancient castle standing near the Roman city of Nettuno.
The car was presented at the Paris Motor Show in October 1931. It fitted a V8 engine derived from the Dilambda but with a smaller displacement (about two and a half litres vs. the four of the flagship model). Dropping the typical unitised body of the Lambda, the Astura had a steel frame X-shaped central crossbeam chassis on which the engine was mounted by means of two short leaf springs: this Lancia patent, also applied on the Artena, nearly cancelled out vibrations.
Furthermore, the good weight-to-power ratio (the sedan version with Lancia bodywork weighted about 1250 kilograms) made the car sprightly on the road reaching a top speed of about 125 km/h: a good result for an engine with a top power of 72 HP.
In addition to the high-quality body versions made directly by Lancia, the chassis of the Astura was the ideal base for some of the most beautiful creations of Italian coachbuilders between the two wars and were ordered by some of the greatest celebrities of the day, like the coupé and cabriolet made by Pinin Farina (owned by Galeazzo Ciano and Marlene Dietrich among others) and Benito Mussolini's ministerial sedan. The copy on show is a six-window custom-made sedan crafted by Farina.
The Aprilia, introduced in 1936, was the spiritual legacy of Vincenzo Lancia, who had passed away a few months before the commercial launch of the car. Provided with a unitised body integrated with the chassis without B-pillar, the appearance of the car was truly innovative. It stood out among the sedans of its day for its particularly aerodynamic line and light-weight securing a top speed of about 130 km/h and good fuel efficiency at the same time. The narrow-V4 with hemispherical combustion chambers contributed to this result. In addition to telescopic independent front suspensions, by now traditional on Lancia, the car fitted independent suspensions also on the rear axle. The car on show is a first series and fits a 1352 cc engine.
The D50 is one of the most important racing models of Lancia. In 1953 the auto maker was successfully competing in road races and chose to take part in the Formula 1 World Championship as well. Vittorio Jano was called to design a single-seater with the help of the Racing Team. The project took a rather long time and the car, fitting a 2.5-litre 90° V8, made its debut in October 1954 at the Spanish Grand Prix.
The D50 stands out for its impeccable finish (unusual on a racing car) and particularly light weight. It was over 50 kilograms lighter than its direct Formula 1 competitors. The most important style and aerodynamic feature was the lateral arrangement of the fuel tanks which improved the CX value and ensured outstanding exceptional handling stability when the tanks were full; unfortunately, this decreased considerably during the race as the fuel level dropped.
The car, driven by Alberto Ascari and Gigi Villoresi, achieved several important results, in 1955, like the Grand Prix of Naples and Valentino victories, but did not win the championship. The disappointing results and the unfavourable economic situation of the Lancia family, combined with the tragic death of Alberto Ascari, convinced the auto maker to withdraw from F1 racing. All the material was handed over to Ferrari, that would go on to win the world championship in 1956 with Juan Manuel Fangio at the wheel of a modified D50. The copy on show is the car driven by Gigi Villoresi in the Valentino Grand Prix in 1955.
Aurelia B24 Spider (1955)
Two variants of the Aurelia B24, considered the symbol of the Italian 1950s together with the Giulietta Spider, were made: the Spider, produced in 1955 and characterised by a panoramic windscreen, distinctive two-part bumper, doors without handles and winding windows, and the Convertible, with a one-part bumper, normally curved windscreen, larger doors with handles and raised, streamline tail fins. Pinin Farina designed both bodies.
The chassis was identical to that of the B20 coupé but with a further shortened wheelbase. The 2451 cc V6 also derived from the closed body version (the Aurelia was the first standard production model to fit a V6 engine and gearbox in block with the differential) adapted with specific calibrations.
Flaminia Loraymo (1960)
This one-of-a-kind car was based on a chassis Flaminia Coupé V6 created by industrial designer Raymond Loewy, famous for the iconic Coca Cola bottle and the Lucky Strike cigarette trademark. American of French origin, Loewy had worked for Studebaker and a number of railway manufacturers. He designed the car for his personal use and had it made by Rocco Motto coachbuilder in Turin.
The car, with the metallic dark amber paintwork it still sports today, was presented at the 47th Paris Motor Show in October 1960 and named Loraymo, a word based on the designed surname and name and which was the telegraphic address of the Loewy studio.
Its most obvious style features includes a large grille enclosed in a chrome-plated steel bezel doubling as a bumper, retracted front wings, fog lights protruding from the body, a slight convexity in the central part of the body for a "Coca-Cola bottle" effect that improved the aerodynamic performance of the car, no boot lid (the boot could only be accessed from the passenger compartment) and rear spoiler on the roof to reduce aerodynamic turbulence, a feature that the car would surprisingly share with the later Stratos.
Flavia Coupé 1.8 (1967)
The Flavia was a milestone in the history of Lancia, that was now owned by the Pesenti family. It was the first Italian model with "all front" mechanics, i.e. with front engine and drive. The car fitted the first Lancia boxer engine - a four cylinder, available in two displacements (1500 and 1800) and later 2000 - and implemented many important technical solutions for the first time in Italy, like disc brakes on four wheels.
The coupé version, presented at the Turin Motor Show in 1961, was designed by Pininfarina and the final assembly was performed at the Pininfarina plant. Compared to the sedan, it had a more elegant and slender style with a sloping roof and a more powerful engine with a top speed of 170 km/h. This specific version was made from 1963 to 1968 in 2150 copies and was outfitted with a mechanical injection engine with power boosted to 102 HP. Style elements worth noting include the Pininfarina badge, the letter "L" applied on the radial grille and the word "iniezione" (injection) on the boot lid.
Fulvia Coupé Rallye 1.6 HF (1972)
Presented two years after the 1963 Fulvia sedan, the coupé version - a 2+2 of elegant appearance and sporty performance - was designed by Piero Castagnero, who was inspired by the stylish Riva motor boats of the day. The car, powered by a V4 engine which would later be developed in various displacements (from 1.2 to 1.6 litres), was an immediate success and major best seller. Its racing potentials were obvious from the start. It soon became a leader of the rally races at the end of the 1960s and spearheaded the HF Lancia Racing Team for various seasons: its most important success, obtained expectedly against cars of much larger displacement and higher power, was the win at the Monte Carlo Rally in 1972, by the team headed by Sandro Munari and Mario Mannucci. The car is the one on show in Milan and still shows the signs of that memorable undertaking on its body. It fits a tuned-up, 1.6-litre, 160 HP four cylinder engine and is universally known by enthusiasts simply as the "14", after its Monte Carlo race number.
The milestone of automotive design - for its futuristic pronounced wedge appearance created by Marcello Gandini for Carrozzeria Bertone - and the "ultimate weapon" of Lancia in rallies, the Stratos wrote some of the most exciting pages in motorsports history in the 1970s by winning race after race.
The rear mid-engine prototype introduced by Bertone at the Turin Motor Show in 1970 was based on the chassis of the Fulvia HF from which the engine was also taken. Production of the definitive version started in 1973. The 2418 cc engine and the transmission were derived from the Ferrari Dino 246 combined with a central steel monocoque making the Stratos particularly competitive in races also thanks to its compact dimensions weighing in at less than one tonne. Many were its victories, such as three Rally World Championships in a row (from 1974 to 1976) and speed races wins, like the Targa Florio and the Tour de France.
The car on show is a street-legal version - with characteristic orange red paintwork - that boasts some significant style elements taken from the racing version, like the broader rear wings.
Rally 037 (1982)
The car was designed at the beginning of the 1980s to replace the glorious but by then dated Fiat 131 Abarth Rally in international competitions. Characterised by project number SE037, it was based on the central core of the Lancia Beta Montecarlo convertible, to which a front and a rear space frame were added by Pininfarina, who also designed the body.
The 2-litre, 16-valve Fiat twin shaft engine supercharged with volumetric compressor was designed by Abarth and arranged longitudinally in rear mid position to the benefit of traction. The 037 street-legal version (the copy on show is one of the 200 made to obtain Group B homologation) developed 205 HP. It touched a top speed in excess of 220 km/h and went from 0 to 100 km/h in less than seven seconds.
The racing version (tuned up to deliver 310 HP of peak power) debuted at the Costa Smeralda Rally in April in 1982 and competed officially in the 1983 season, dominating the world championship from the first race (which was the Monte Carlo Rally won by Walter Roerl). In that year, Lancia conquered the World, European and the Italian Championship despite the tough competition of the new all-wheel drive Audi Quattro.
Delta S4 (1986)
Design of the S4, the first 4x4 used in competitions (the letter "S" of its name stands for supercharged, the number "4" indicates four-wheel drive), was started by Abarth engineers in 1983, under project code SE038, in the wake of the victorious 037.
Only 200 needed to obtain Group B homologation were originally made: the car on show in Milan sports characteristic dark red paintwork. The street-legal Delta S4 was actually very different from the 037 (the fundamental elements of both, such as engine, supercharging system, transmission and chassis-body were designed from scratch). Above all, the sedan of the same name was heavily - and it must be said successfully - influenced by the racing car. The chassis was a tubular steel space frame construction with kevlar and carbon fibre honeycomb panels. The four-cylinder 1759 cc engine with 4 valves per cylinder and two overhead camshafts had a one-of-a-kind twincharging system with volumetric compressor operating at low rpm and turbocharger for high rpm, delivering a power of 250 HP (street-legal version) and nearly 500 (racing version).
Thema Ferrari 8.32 (1988)
Introduced at the Turin Motor Show in 1986, the most exclusive version of the Thema was immediately dubbed "Thema Ferrari" because its eight-cylinder 32-valve engine (hence the name 8.32) had been designed and developed in Maranello: it was the appropriately adapted and "tamed" engine fitted on the Ferrari 308 that on the Thema developed a peak power of 215 HP allowing the car to reach a top speed of about 240 km/h. Key style elements included Ferrari-inspired alloy rims, front end with modified grille, three-colour (green, white and red) "8.32" badge on a yellow background and, above all, retractable rear spoiler electrically adjustable with a simple control. The suspension layout featured an electrically controlled McPherson. The interiors had leather and briar wood accents. Two series with a total of 4300 units were made from 1986 to 1992. The car on show belongs to the second series.
Delta HF Integrale (1994)
The car on show never left the company and has only a few dozen kilometres on clock. It belongs to the fifth and last series of the Delta HF Integrale (known as the "Evo 2").
Final development of the four-wheel drive Delta (a car that would enter rally legend with its six World Championship wins in row from 1987 to 1992), the car had a wider track, boosted suspensions and brakes and a beefed-up four-cylinder two-litre turbo delivering up to 215 HP powering the Delta to touch a top speed of 220 km/h.
To welcome the public of enthusiasts and experts, Alfa Romeo will be setting up an impressive exhibition area with a strong visual impact to celebrate the authentic enthusiasm for the cars of yesterday and today. The theme of the event is the celebration of the Veloce badge, that appeared for the first time on the Giulietta Sprint Veloce introduced at the Turin Motor Show in April 1956 and which then characterised some of the fastest Alfa Romeo modules, like the new Giulia Veloce.
The car presented at the Paris Motor Show last October will be making it first Italian appearance in Milan and will be accompanied for the occasion by two forerunners of excellence, both from private collections: the Giulietta Sprint Veloce and the Giulia Sprint GT Veloce.
Visitors to the stand will learn about the exhibition currently at the Alfa Romeo Museum in Arese, entitled "The Masters of Style": a celebration of the craftsmanship of the great Italian coachbuilders who propelled Alfa Romeo to the pinnacle of aesthetic, aerodynamic and engineering research. The exhibition is open until January 10, 2017.
Giulietta Sprint Veloce (1957)
The Giulietta Sprint Veloce was the technical and performance evolution of the Sprint: it was nearly one hundred kilograms lighter, had a powerful light-alloy twin cam engine taken to 80 HP (96 from 1958), increased compression ratio and two double-barrel carburettors. It reached a top speed of over 170 km/h. With performance like this, the Sprint Veloce was engineered for gentlemen drivers who could rely on a car that was faster than competition. Only a few secondary details of the bodywork were modified. The car thus remains a masterpiece of Italian style designed by Bertone and made by Franco Scaglione. One of the most important racing results of the Giulietta Sprint Veloce was beyond doubt the class win at the Mille Miglia in 1956, obtained with the concurrent sensational eleventh place in the absolute ranking, behind vehicles with three times its power.
Giulia Sprint GT Veloce (1966)
Three years after the debut of the Giulia Sprint GT in 1963, equipped with the engine of the Giulia T.I. sedan, Alfa Romeo presented the Giulia Sprint GT Veloce at the Geneva Motor Show: with 3 extra HP added to the original 106, this coupé had top-in-class handling and touched a top speed of over 185 km/h, a limit that approached that of the famous GTA in road configuration. The mechanical architecture of the Sprint GTV borrowed heavily from the Giulia with a compact and light body designed to enhance active safety and performance creeping up on the higher-class GTs. Its essential and elegant line, also designed by Giugiaro at Bertone, became an instant classic.
With exclusive style and contents, the new version of the Giulia sports a glorious and evocative name seeped in Alfa Romeo history that for precisely sixty years has identified the auto maker's sportiest and most distinctive versions. The Veloce badge is making a comeback on Giulia to satisfy customers seeking contents packed with personality. The new car stands out for a number of sophisticated style elements, like specific bumpers and glossy black window frame, and quintessentially sporty contents, like a specific rear extractor integrating the twin tailpipe and 19" five-hole alloy rims available as optional equipment. The same sporty touch continues inside with new heated, electrically adjustable leather Sport seats available in three colours, the heated sporty steering wheel with specific grip, the aluminium inserts on the dashboard, central tunnel and door panels and the Xenon headlights.
This distinctive style both inside and out is matched by an exciting array of standard equipment, including bi-zone climate control, Alfa DNA and Alfa Connect 6.5" infotainment, new and efficient active safety systems, such as Forward Collision Warning (FCW) with Autonomous Emergency Brake (AEB) and pedestrian recognition, IBS (Integrated Brake System), Lane Departure Warning (LDW) and cruise control with speed limiter.
The 2.2 Turbo Petrol engine debuting on Giulia Veloce has a maximum power output of 210 HP at 3750 rpm and a peak torque of 470 Nm at 1750 rpm. More in detail, the 2.2-litre turbo diesel of Giulia is the first diesel engine in Alfa Romeo history to be built entirely in aluminium. This straight-four implements next-generation injection with MultiJet II technology and Injection Rate Shaping (IRS), along with operating pressures of 2000 bar. The electrically-operated variable geometry turbocharger is an engineering gem. It minimises lag and guarantees benefits in terms of efficiency at the same time. The most sophisticated levels of driving satisfaction and comfort are also guaranteed by the use of a balancing countershaft.
Finally, the new Giulia Veloce mounts an innovative all-wheel drive system with Q4 technology, designed to manage the drive distribution in real time, so as to deliver top-notch performance, efficiency and safety. In short, the Q4 system secures all the advantages of four-wheel drive - in terms of stability, traction and safety - and at the same time guarantees fuel efficiency, reactivity and rear-wheel drive satisfaction.
The Abarth stand will be showcasing three cars that confirm Abarth's famed strive for "mechanical perfection": this is the essence of a brand which has always continuously renewed itself by taking on and winning challenges which some see as impossible. A classic Fiat 124 Abarth Rally Gr.4 will be on show in Milan by the side of the new Abarth 124 spider and an Abarth 695 Biposto.
Fiat 124 Abarth Rally Gr.4 (1975)
Compared to the Fiat 124 Sport Spider from which it derives, the Fiat 124 Abarth Rally Gr.4 benefited from a more powerful engine, fibreglass roof and bonnet, aluminium doors and considerable weight reduction. Tuned by the Abarth Racing Team, the car made its debut in the 1972 season and continued racing until 1975, when it was replaced by the 131 Abarth Rally in 1976. Fitted with a 1756 cc engine delivering 200 HP of power, this car could reach a top speed of 170 km/h according to the final drive ratio. It won the European Rally Championship twice (in 1972 and 1975) and came second in the manufacturers championship for four consecutive seasons (from 1972 to 1975).
The attention of Abarth towards classic cars is confirmed by the opening of the Officine Abarth Classiche workshop in Turin in November 2015. The Abarth Classiche Project focuses on several areas, such as the restoration workshop, certifications and organisation of trade shows, meetings and competitions. The success of the project is exceeding the most optimistic expectations. A high number of certifications have been completed and many other collectors are currently on the waiting list.
Abarth 124 spider
By the side of the vintage forerunner, visitors in Milan will see the new Abarth 124 spider, the car that guarantees all the excitement and pleasure of an authentic roadster experience. Developed with the Abarth Racing Team, the Abarth 124 spider perfectly embodies the leading values of the brand with the scorpion badge: performance, expert craftsmanship and technical excellence. Standard equipment on Abarth 124 spider includes mechanical self-locking differential, typically found on premium sports cars. The weights are concentrated between the axles and the 1.4-litre, 170 HP engine is installed behind the front axle to guarantee optimal agility and superior driving feel. Sophisticated mechanics and the use of special materials contain the weight to just 1060 kilograms, which results in a weight-to-power ratio of 6.2 kg/HP, the best in its category. Additionally, the suspension of Abarth 124 spider features high double wishbone suspension on the front and a five-arm multi-link on the rear. This calibrated setup is specifically designed to increase cornering and braking stability combined with the sporty calibration of the power steering.
Abarth 695 Biposto Record
Next to the new spider, the spotlight will also be trained on Abarth 695 Biposto Record, the version created to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the two acceleration achievements (on the quarter of a mile and on the five hundred metre distances) set by Carlo Abarth at the Monza Race Track in 1965. It features an exclusive "Modena Yellow" livery with "Tar Cold Grey" trim and an enamel "695 Record" badge proudly on the side.
Under the bonnet it has a 1.4 T-jet engine, beefed up to 190 HP for securing excellent performance: it clocks a top speed of 230 km/h and goes from 0 to 100 in 5.9 seconds. This special edition is packed with technical features lifted directly from the racing world, such as ultralight titanium anti-roll bar, 18" alloy rims, oversized Brembo braking system, Akrapovi? exhaust, adjustable hydraulic shock absorbers and mechanical self-locking differential.