Lancia Beta saloon - Alfa Romeo Forum
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Cool Wall This lounge has been dedicated to Mark Cullen who tragically passed away on 07-04-08. The Cool Wall was Marks idea so it's only right it has his name attached.


View Poll Results: Beta better?
Sub zero 2 11.11%
cool 11 61.11%
uncool 5 27.78%
seriously uncool 0 0%
Voters: 18. You may not vote on this poll

 
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(Post Link) post #1 of 18 Old 10-09-14 Thread Starter
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Lancia Beta saloon

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when is that photo from? Stretch everything and you have a GTV! Ubercool in the day!!
 
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My chemistry teacher in secondary school had one. That kind of sullies it (chemistry?) for me, but I'm still going for cool
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Looks like a parts bin, half arsed, coffee break car
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(Post Link) post #5 of 18 Old 11-09-14 Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gaz View Post
Looks like a parts bin, half arsed, coffee break car


This car was launched in 1972. Yes, that's right....1972. That means it's initial design was undertaken when The Beatles were still going. It came with advanced 4 cylinder twin cam, transverse mounted engines - 1.4 (90PS), 1.6 (106PS) & 1.8 (120PS), it handled well, it was well-specced and stylish.

It rusted like a bas****, I grant you, but that doesn't make it uncool.
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Not the most flattering photo...

here is another angle:
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I'd say just a shade below cool....
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Lancia Beta

My father had one of these. black, with a tan interior. Coolest car on our estate by far.

Motorbike slammed into the side of it and because of the problems with rusty subframes or whatever the insurance company wrote it off as not worth repairing.
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Does notoriety make it cool? There must be more made up rust-related stories about these cars than anything else. Most of them aren't actually true but you should never let the truth get in the way of a good story. "They rusted so much that the engines fell out as you were driving along and Lancia had to buy every single one back" is much more dramatic than "They had a rust problem which meant subframes sometimes came loose and Lancia bought back the affected cars".

If notoriety doesn't work, the design was way ahead of anything being produced in Britain at the time so, compared to a Ford Cortina, a Marina, or a Vauxhall Victor, it was probably pretty cool. It had twin overhead cams and a timing belt in a time of pushrods and rattly timing chains, it had a five speed box when most motorists had only just given up having three-on-the-tree, it had independent suspension when cart-springs were still considered state of the art.

If nothing else, it will always be a talking point.

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That picture of SiFs makes it look vile!

But in reality, it's definitely a cool car.

I tried to get one as my first car for about 100, but my cautious parents banned the idea. I imagine at that price it was going to be an absolute shed so they were probably right.
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The Beta was the first Lancia after the Fiat takeover so it was based on the 132 and it introduced the Lampredi twincam to Lancia from the Fiat 124 Coupe / Spider. Which is cool in itself . The rust problem was originally being dealt with at the Lancia HQ in the UK by buying back affected cars and destroying them individually but the office moved into Fiat at Slough who decided to destroy them all in one place. This involved taking to storage in Somerset which made it all visible. Shame as I remember it as a nicely equipped and finished car when a friends mum had a new ES model .
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cue2 View Post
The Beta was the first Lancia after the Fiat takeover so it was based on the 132.
How was it based on the Fiat 132 when that car was in-line engine/rear wheel drive?
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(Post Link) post #14 of 18 Old 11-09-14 Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wobbley View Post
How was it based on the Fiat 132 when that car was in-line engine/rear wheel drive?
Valid question. I meant the engine .
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I'm a bit conflicted with the saloon. It was definitely advanced with clean lines in its day but my abiding memory of them is one of pretty shabby sheds trundling around or lurking in the cheaper shadows of autotrader.

As time has passed it now looks a bit ordinary, if not quite bland.

So, do we vote on what it was in its day, how we remember them or how is a well-kept or restored version viewed now? I'm going to skip the middle one and say it barely, barely scrapes into cool by virtue of being Italian and unusual despite its relatively mundane saloon status.


Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.

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(Post Link) post #17 of 18 Old 12-09-14 Thread Starter
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I admire it's elegant clarity of line
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Cool for me even though the inner wings and bulkhead rotted though within a year.
 
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