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Marque: Lancia - Company History & Models - Cars By Brand



Born in 1881,Vincenzo Lancia became book keeper for Giovanni Ceirano, who imported Rudge bicycles, then built his own cycles and moved into car building.Vincenzo was fascinated by the workings of the vehicles, and when F.I.A.T. took over Ceirano in 1900, he became chief inspector for the company.

F.I.A.T. was keen to use motor sport to promote its cars, and in the summer of 1900 Vincenzo…

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Lancia Beta 2000

Lancia Beta 2000

Fast Facts

  • Produced:
  • Engine:
    1995cc S4 DOHC 115bhp @5500 rpm
  • 0-60 mph:
    11 secs
  • Top Speed:
    106 mph
  • MPG:
    23 mpg

The much-maligned Beta offers one of the best engines of its era, a well appointed interior, charming road manners and space for five inside an elegant body. Unfortunately it also offered a great deal of tin worm with it. The Beta actually debuted in late 1972 (with 1.4, 1.6 and 1.8-litre engines) offering performance in the BMW class and, especially with the ES trim, a great deal of standard kit. The boxy Trevi replaced the original Beta Berlina in 1981. For the enthusiast who wishes to sample one of the great car marques of all time and sod the rust (and iffy Italian electrics), the top 2-litre Beta 2000 has much to offer

Lancia Beta

Lancia Beta


7 / 10

PRICE: Saloon: Rough, £250. Good, £750. A1, £1500
Coupé/HPE: Rough, £500+. Good, £1200+. A1, £2500
Spider/Volumex Coupé: Rough, £1000+. Good, £2500. A1, £3500

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Fast Facts

  • Produced:
  • Bodywork:
    Four-door saloon, two-door coupé, two-door Spider, three-door sports estate
  • Engine:
    Overhead camshaft, in-line four-cylinder.
    1297cc/1301cc, 82bhp
    1438cc, 90bhp
    1585cc, 100bhp
    1592cc, 100 or 108bhp
    1756cc, 110 or 120bhp
    1995cc, 122bhp (Volumex, 135bhp)
  • 0-60 mph:
    1585cc: 10.5 sec
    1995cc: 10+ sec (Volumex, 9+ sec)
  • Top Speed:
    1585cc: 110 mph
    1995cc: 115 mph (Volumex, 125 mph)
  • MPG:
    18-35 mpg

Lancia’s neat Beta saloon was introduced in 1972, reaching Britain in the summer of 1973.

Powering the newcomer were twin cam, Fiat-derived engines, offered in 1.4, 1.6 and 1.8-litre sizes.

The autumn of 1974 saw the U.K. debut of the 1.6 litre fixed-head coupé, and in the following year, the Spider (a 2+2 coupé with a Targa roof and folding hood). HPE (‘High Performance Estate’ – like a Scimitar) versions arrived in the autumn of 1975.

Two-litre models were offered from early in 1976, and in the spring of the same year, restyled, Series 2 Betas were introduced. A 1.3-litre version of the coupé was added to the line-up in the summer of 1977.

The summer of 1982 saw the arrival of updated 1600 and 2000IE HPE models, and the introduction of the 2000IE Coupé. A supercharged two-litre engine and uprated running gear were notable features of the rapid Volumex Coupé and HPE, which brightened the Beta range in the autumn of 1983.

It is sad that the much-publicised rust problems of the Beta were to blight the model’s reputation, for these are attractive, enjoyable cars were top of the class in their day. Survivors are comparatively rare, but worth tracking down as a well cared-for Beta can make an excellent sporty, practical classic.

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