Lancia 037 prototype number one up for auction

Rodolfo Schellin

A legend in rallying, the Lancia 037 marked the finish of an era. It was simultaneously the initial car to win the famous Team B constructors’ championship, but also the previous non-AWD car to win an all round WRC title. And, it did so by defeating the juggernaut of Audi’s VW-backed, all-wheel-drive Quattro, a feat number of thought achievable. Now, the originator of that historic victory, the initial Lancia 037 prototype, is up for auction.

Chassis 037-001 could not look like the two hundred or so homologated 037 Stradales, but beneath the cobbled-together styling, uncomfortable panel gaps, and kit car-like command panel, it has the basics that created its successors environment champions. Ability arrives by using a mid-mounted, supercharged 16-valve 2.-liter four driving the serious wheels as a result of a 5-velocity transmission. Dependent (very) loosely on a Lancia Montecarlo (AKA Scorpion in the U.S.), the the front and rear sub-sections are tube-framed, and the engine rotated 90 levels for a longitudinal orientation.

This unique car was designed by race car constructor Dallara, but you can expect to observe an Abarth badge on the rear deck. At the time, the Fiat tuning division was was in charge of Lancia’s rally system, so it bought some branding showcased on the prototype that didn’t make the last slash. Other stylistic discrepancies on this prototype that didn’t make it to the race car consist of its squared-off wheel arches, staggered headlight placement, and spherical taillights.

The prototype was at first crimson but eventually Lancia painted it in the white and blue Martini livery of the race cars, employing it on reconnaissance runs. The existing proprietor, Sergio Limone, restored it back again to its unique color and spec.

The 1983 WRC struggle involving the 037 and the Audi Quattro is the things of legend. Lancia stretched the rulebook to its limit to get the win, focusing its efforts on the rounds it knew it could realize success in, flooding them with 037s to box Audi out of the podium (and details), although wholly skipping rounds in which it knew its RWD would be at a downside. Ironically, it was an additional German, Walter Rohrl, alongside with Finland’s Markku Alén (Finland was just one of the skipped rounds) who sent Lancia their WRC title.

In 2019 a Lancia 037 highway car marketed for about $867,000 at auction. Although not as driveable, this prototype is arguably more sizeable, traditionally talking. We are going to know its genuine benefit when it crosses the block at an RM Sotheby’s auction in Milan on June 15.

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