The Fulvia Mixes the Elegant and the Strange
Before they were relegated to the foul indignity of foisting re-badged Chryslers upon uninformed and gullible 21st century Europeans, Lancia was once among the greatest of all Engineering-first automobile manufacturers. Their record for innovation stretches back more than a century, and among their pioneering achievements were the early uses of independent front suspensions, narrow-angle V4 engines, the first-ever stressed moncoque chassis (all three features of the 1922 Lambda) as well as the first publicly-offered five-speed (Series III Ardea, 1948) and first V6-powered production car (1950s Aurelia). Though perhaps most famous for the legendary Dino-engined Stratos and WRC-dominating Delta Integrale, both of those cars are in fact products of a post-1969 Fiat-owned Lancia, and though undoubtedly deserving of their high status, they’re not representative of a pure and undiluted Lancia bloodline. For me, the greatest true Lancia is the lovely, advanced, and utterly unique Fulvia.