Unit body, sliding pillar independent front suspension, narrow angle overhead camshaft V-4 engine and more make the Lancia Lambda one of the most innovative, imaginative and effective automobiles of the Twenties, if not of all time. Evolving through numerous series, the Lambda stayed in production for years, a firm and successful base for Lancia's subsequent growth. The Lambda was introduced in 1922 and this 1927 Lambda Touring car is a Tipo 78 seventh series example originally delivered to Australia where a dash plaque indicates it was first sold by Shields Motor Company in Melbourne. It was restored a few years ago in Australia to good touring condition with attractive paint, a straight body, good upholstery, top and soft trim and nickel bright work. Liveried in red with black leather upholstery and a black top, it has red painted wire wheels, black wall tires and a single rear-mounted spare. Like all of its type it is right-hand drive and has four wheel mechanical drum brakes which all contemporary commentators observed are remarkably effective. The overhead cam four makes something like 50 horsepower and propels the lightweight unit body Lambda to 70 mph or more. The suspension, independent at the front with a live rear axle on semi-elliptical leaf springs at the rear, is supple and compliant. Coupled with the rigidity of the unit body it contrasts dramatically with the rugged ride of the flexible frames and stiff cart-sprung suspensions still prevalent in the late 20's. This is a true classic in both the inherent sense of the word and also (by application) by CCCA. Brought to the U.S. in 2004, it has been in an important California collection since then, is freshly serviced and detailed and needs nothing to be driven and enjoyed enthusiastically.
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