Alternate terms for these quirky cars are “full of personality,” “individualistic,” and various other ways you’d go about describing a blind date
When the Lancia Flavia was first presented to the public at the Turin Motor Show of 1960, most people were amazed at its unconventional layout. Developed by the gifted engineer Antonio Fessia, it was the first Italian car to employ a horizontally fitted engine, a 90-hp, 1.5-liter, four-cylinder driving the front wheels.
The Flavia Sport was a 2+2 coupe that carried aluminum coachwork by Zagato, one of Italy’s most influential, important and mythical design studios. The young designer Ercole Spada created the unusual and aerodynamic shape of the Flavia Sport by using concave and rounded surfaces and an angled grille. Due to its lightweight body, it was easily capable of exceeding 100 mph and was highly successful in both rally and endurance racing. Indeed, the most important victory of this special model was achieved by René Trautmann in the 1965 Coupe des Alpes.
The Lancia Flavia Sport on offer here was ordered by the famous French rally driver in January 1964. He immediately brought it to the Turin-based tuner Bosato, which completely modified the car, turning it into a thoroughbred rally car. Power was boosted to about 130 hp from 1,800-cc of displacement, with top speed hitting 112 mph.
In the same year Trautmann joined the legendary “Squadra Corse,” which became the official Lancia rally team in 1965. Though Trautmann had access to the red works Lancias, he used this Flavia at important events such as the Tour de France in 1964 and the Coupe des Alpes in 1965, achieving Lancia’s most important rally results since the 1950s.
It is believed that the car remained with the Trautmanns until 1980, when it was purchased by its last owner in Grenoble. The car has since been kept in a collection and no longer used, however it has been prepared for participation in modern retrospective events.
The body is in very sound original condition, still wearing its original medium metallic blue paintwork. The interior, too, is in a marvelous original state with the original black carpets fitted and showing the period rally specifications such as Zagato racing seats, roll-cage, and Plexiglas side and rear windows. The original and numbers-matching engine has benefited from a recent complete rebuild.
This competition Lancia provides a rare opportunity for acquiring one of these sought-after sports cars, and would be an ideal entry for some of today’s most prestigious historic events.