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LANCIA Lambda   1922 1931
1922 1931

Lancia introduced the Lambda in 1922, and it was, indeed, a car like no other on the road thanks to its advanced engineering solutions imagined by the genius Vincenzo Lancia.
Back in the ’20s, all cars shared the same principles: a stiff chassis, two rigid axles, an inline or V engine, and brakes at the front. The Lambda was different. It was a production car with unibody construction that relied on a front independent suspension, a unique 17-degrees V-4, and drum brakes in all corners. That made it different, but the customers didn’t like that they couldn’t order their bodyworks from various coachbuilders.

Vincenzo Lambda took its inspiration from boats when he designed the car’s structure. The side panels, firewall, and seat support contributed to the car’s structural rigidity. He proved his solution by going down on stairs without any problem. But he was stuck with a flat, vertical radiator at the front and flat panels and windshield. He made the engine compartment’s lid curved, which looked different than other carmakers.

Even though he didn’t want to make the Lambda a luxury vehicle, he designed the interior with enough room for a bench at the front and a curved couch in the rear. The instrument panel was straightforward, with the dials mounted on an angled board under a visor that helped the driver seeing them when the sun was up.

In the engine compartment, Lancia installed a revolutionary engine for those times, with an overhead camshaft while most other carmakers still had that in the engine’s block. The carmaker paired it with a four-speed manual transmission.

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