The new car will share a platform with the new Fiat Bravo, which is currently being developed with Austrian engineering firm Magna-Steyr. Fiat is also considering to build a performance AWD version that would be the spiritual successor to the Integrale rally car, complete with a high-output turbo mill. Chief designer for both projects is Frank Stephenson, the man behind the Ferrari F430 and Maserati MC12.
The car will be launched next year with an extensive engine range including a 1.4-litre turbo with 120hp (90kW) and a larger 1.8-litre version with 190hp (140kW). There will be two diesel engines as well, a 1.6-litre with 120hp (90kW) and a 2.0-litre with 165hp (120kW).
Click ahead for high-res images plus the full press release.
Lancia Delta HPE Concept Car, world premiere
The Lancia Delta HPE Concept Car is having its world premiere at the 63rd edition of the Venice International Film Festival. The car takes its inspiration from the practical, sporty, elegant car concept embodied in the Lancia Beta HPE during the second half of the Seventies to offer an up-to-date take on the idea of a sporty yet practical saloon (shooting brake).
This medium-sized vehicle (4.5 metres long, 1.8 metres wide and 1.5 metres tall) ensures great roominess (particular in the back) and travelling comfort, outstanding accessibility and a versatile, modular and capacious boot. All this is coupled with a compellingly slender, sporty shape.
The Concept Car reaps the rewards of a century of experience to continue the tradition of the great medium-sized Lancia cars: the Aprilia, the Appia, the Fulvia, the Lancia Beta HPE, the Prisma, the Dedra and the Lybra – offering innovative features that encapsulate the best of Lancia qualities.
The first quality is styling that reinvents the Lancia tradition with original body features: an overhanging ‘flying bridge‛ roof, a large rear window without a lower frame and a chrome grille that reinterprets the classic Lancia grille of the 1950s for a new generation. A flash of chrome along the side underlines a great expanse of glass and adds an extra sporty touch to the side panels.
The second quality of the new car's design is plenty of room for driver and passengers: the Delta HPE Concept Car is truly at the peak of its category in this respect, with a wheelbase of 2700 mm that translates into extraordinary roominess at the rear, where passengers can experience a standard of comfort worthy of a limousine. A sliding rear seat with reclining backrest allows the already spacious boot to be increased or it can be pushed back and tilted for total relaxation, like a business class seat on an intercontinental flight.
Superlative quality of life on board, is the new model's third trump card for top level motoring: the car offers great noiselessness when in motion due to its sound-absorbent roof - plus plenty of light due to a generous sunroof and side windows. And more: all the relaxed pleasure offered by a sophisticated Bose® Hi-Fi with steering wheel controls and the perfect interior temperature assured by an automatic dual zone climate control system. Comfort also means being able to rely on a roomy, versatile luggage compartment of over 400 litres.
The Concept Car also weds Lancia class and prestige with a hi-tech entertainment package, including an MP3 player and, above all, Blue&Me®, an innovative Windows Mobile-based system developed through a joint venture between Fiat Auto and Microsoft. This combines the potential of Bluetooth® technology with a USB port so that customers can play their own favourite songs recorded on their smart mobiles, their MP3 players or their USB flash drives.
The fourth Lancia quality is interior design. Lancia has always been a byword for Italian craftsmanship and the new car’s interiors offer a judicious complement to the original, sophisticated exterior lines of its models. The new Concept car is no exception: the passenger compartment, produced by the Lancia Style Centre, is a veritable lounge, where the facia, door panels and front and rear seats are the highest expression of Italian exclusivity.
And more. The fifth value, strictly linked to the design of the interior, is the use of top-quality materials that are used not only for their looks, but also the touch sensations they offer: including wood trim, chrome detailing, Alcantara and leather upholstery and velour mats.
Finally, the Delta HPE Concept Car is designed to be equipped with a wide selection of petrol and diesel engines, all turbocharged and combined with 6 speed manual and robotised gearboxes with power ratings ranging from 120 bhp to over 200 bhp, plus tried and tested mechanicals optimised for comfort and handling by means of SDC suspension (with electronic damping control) to further enhance driving satisfaction.