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1982 Lancia Gamma Coupe 2.5 Auto

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Seller

retromarquesltd

1982 Lancia Gamma Coupe 2.5 Auto

  • Location: Tewkesbury
  • Odometer Reading: 92,533km (~57k miles)
  • Chassis Number: ZLA830AC400001934
  • Engine: 2500
  • Gearbox: Auto
  • Color: Blue
  • Interior: Blue Velour

Background

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Something of a niche car, even when it was new, the Lancia Gamma was launched as both a four-door saloon (albeit one with a rakish profile) and a two-door coupe in 1977. Both were designed by Pininfarina and built by the firm alongside the Ferrari 400, a car with which it shares more than a passing resemblance...

A front-wheel-drive car with a boxer engine to allow the lower bonnet line that gives it its distinctive profile, it could be had with either a five-speed manual gearbox or a four-speed automatic transmission. Originally fitted with a carburettored 2.5-litre engine, it later gained a 2.0-litre version to meet strict Italian tax laws, and Bosch fuel injection as part of the mid-lifecycle revamp that created the Series 2 cars along with larger 15-inch wheels and a Ermenegildo Zegna-designed interior.

The tax-dodging engine boasts 115bhp, while both the 2.5-litre versions have 140bhp. The 2.5-litre cars, which are the only ones you are likely to see here in Blighty, have 153lb/ft of torque, enough to let them sprint past 60mph in just under ten seconds on their way to a top speed of almost 120mph.

The rest of the underpinnings were taken from the Lancia Beta, which made them utterly fit for purpose and endowed the Gamma with a litheness and sporting character that was entirely in keeping with Lancia’s ethos at the time.

Interiors were wonderfully over-designed and quite luxurious for their time, even if they generally relied on the aforementioned design for their ambience rather than the more usual wood and leather cues that we Brits were more used to.

Weighing 1,320kgs when in saloon form and 1,290kgs as a coupe, the former eventually shifted 15,272 units, and the latter 6,790, by the time it expired in 1984.

And, those of you of a certain age will remember that CAR magazine stalwart Ronald ‘Steady’ Barker owned a number of them, eulogizing about their merits – and given the breadth and depth of his experience, that’s quite the accolade.

Oh, and it was originally destined to be designed in conjunction with Citroen, and to share the CX’s hydropneumatic suspension and drivetrain. When that relationship broke down – and the Gamma doesn’t really do relationships – Lancia was forced to go its own way.

The Vehicle

We are delighted to be able to offer you the ultra-exclusive Lancia Gamma Coupe. First registered on the 1st of April 1982, this left-hand-drive example was recently imported from Germany, where it was owned by a fastidious (and wealthy…) German for 19 years following two previous Swiss owners.

Something of a ‘time-warp’ car, it is being offered in a very good condition. Clearly cherished, it comes with a huge history file of invoices and associated ownership documents, which provide provenance and reassurance in equal measure.

The owner points out that this is also a very rare car. One of only 1,209 ever built, only three are believed to still be on the road in the UK, with another half-a-dozen registered as being on SORN.

On the Outside

Finished in Lancia Blue, the paint is said to be in “very good overall” condition, “with just some small touch-ups to note”, although these are all reported to be a “very good colour match.” All-in-all, the vendor summarises the dark blue coachwork as: “one would not imagine it is 37 years old.”

We note good panel condition with no dents, dinks and scrapes, although there are of course some minor stonechips and small scratches. The shutlines are good too, as is the brightwork.

More importantly for a Lancia of this period, the owner tells us that “the body and underside are in excellent condition and corrosion-free. It was cleaned and Dinitrol anti-corrosion treated in 2001, and has had no wet driving since!”

The hard-to-find light lenses and badges are in great shape, as is the glass. In fact, the rear window still sports the original ‘1981 WORLD ENDURANCE CHAMPIONSHIP” sticker – and as it isn’t faded and cracked, we think it is fair to surmise that the Lancia has been stored very carefully over the years and protected from exposure to direct sunlight, which will have benefitted the entire interior. Originality is key here.

The original 6Jx15-inch Lancia Cromodora alloy wheels are in a good condition, albeit with the odd spot of peeling lacquer. They are also shod with matching Pirelli P6000 tyres, all of which have good tread.

As we will never tyre of explaining, our experience shows that matching high-quality tyres are an infallible sign of a caring and mechanically sympathetic owner who is prepared to spend the appropriate amount in maintaining their car properly. Their presence does not, of course, preclude the need for a thorough inspection - something the vendor would welcome, by the way – but do give you a shortcut into their attitude towards maintenance.

On the Inside

The seats are squidgier than the equivalent German ones would be, but they’re in great shape and look terrific following a minor invisible repair. The rear seats are fitted with inertia-reel seat-belts too, something that is not always the case with cars of this age and something that increases its versatility no end.

The remainder of the trim is very good, and the door cards, headlining, and dashboard show no significant wear and only the very gentlest of patination. The very good carpets are protected by Lancia-branded overmats.

The same is true of the switchgear, which is said to be in a very good condition. Everything is reported to be fully functional too, including the electric mirrors, electric windows, central locking, and air-conditioning, which is said to be “ice cold” and even comes with its own service book, which dates the last service as having been carried out in December 2018.

The headunit in the dashboard is a period Blaupunkt Mannheim 24 radio-cassette player, and there is even a spare Blaupunkt Trier radio cassette with the car.

There are some lovely touches inside too, including some neat stitching to the gearlever surround and centre console, two rear sunblinds, and a nifty rear ashtray and lighter.

The boot is very clean and neatly trimmed with what looks to be the original trim panels and brown carpet. Home to the car’s toolkit, jack and spare alloy wheel, the underlying metalwork looks to be solid and free of rust. There is also an aftermarket warning triangle and first aid kit in there, just in case the worst should happen.

Problems? Well, the main points to note are a split in the cloth on the driver’s seat bolster along with slight wear and fading to the driver’s seat. The headlining looks to have some staining to it too, although this does appear to be minor and limited in scope and should be easy to remove.

Underneath

The vendor reports that the Gamma has been extremely well cared for over the years. So much so in fact that its last owner purchased and installed a replacement rebuilt engine in 2001 (sourced it from Gamma Service in Holland; this is a very European car…) simply because the previous engine had done 74,700 km!

Wonderfully, his attitude was that he just wanted a fuss-free Gamma experience and was prepared to pay to get it. The new engine has a mere 16,000km on it to date, and has been serviced twice in Germany.

The engine bay is very clean and beautifully detailed. It is also completely clear of rust; even the strut towers, normally one of the first places to go, are strong and still finished as per the factory.

The car also comes with a spares pack that includes another set of wheels, service items, seals, and a car cover.

The underside looks to be remarkably well preserved and free of corrosion and rust.

History Highlights

Recently imported into the UK from Germany (those are German export plates on the car now), the vendor has checked it over and submitted it for an MOT test meaning it is now ready to be simply registered here in the UK, something he is happy to help the winning bidder with. Being an EU import, there were no taxes to pay, and this is confirmed with a NOVA certificate. It of course could be re-registered into any EU country.

The car comes with the spare key set and a huge history file of invoices and associated ownership documents including a stamped service history booklet, the service log for the air-conditioning system, the original owner’s wallet, and various original Lancia documentation including some original factory brochures, a Lancia Motor Club Journal dated Summer 1992 which contains a series of Gamma Coupe articles including by the well-known Martin Buckley, a MotorSport road test, and a factory workshop manual. There is also a batch of spares (photographed): Full set 4x original Lancia wheels (used as winter set apparently) , selection of window seals, 2x boxes servicing kit & spares & car cover.

Please visit the documents section of the gallery of this listing where you will find photos of this and other paperwork to support our claim that this car has been maintained in recent years to the very highest standard.

If you’d like to inspect the car prior to placing a bid – something we would encourage – then please use the Contact Seller button to arrange an appointment.

NB. We know that many of you will be limiting your social exposure over the coming days and weeks, so if you’d rather not come to see the car in person, please give the owner a call and ask if he can shoot a personal video of the car honing in on any areas you’d like him to concentrate on.

What We Think

When was the last time you saw a Lancia Gamma Coupe, never mind one in this condition? Finished in an attractive colour combination, it is also probably the very best in Europe when you consider the quality of its mechanical, structural, and cosmetic condition.

Clearly cherished over the years, its comprehensive history and documentation folder, along with an extensive spares pack, adds both value and reassurance that’s its remarkable history is both accurate and comprehensive.

But, how to value a car like this? It’s a hard question to answer largely because there are so few comparator cars with which to benchmark it. But, if we are to stick our neck out, we think it’ll go for somewhere between £7,000 and £11,000, which is remarkable value for such a rare, well-preserved car.

Viewing is always encouraged, and this particular car is located with the vendor near Tewkesbury; to arrange an appointment please use the Contact Seller button at the top of the listing. Feel free to ask any questions or make observations in the comments section below, or try our ‘Frequently Asked Questions’.

If needed, please remember we have a network of trusted suppliers we work with regularly and can recommend: Classic & Sportscar Finance for purchase-financing, Footman James for classic car insurance Thames Valley Car Storage for storing your car and AnyVan for transporting it.

BORING, but IMPORTANT: Please note that whilst we at The Market always aim to offer the most descriptive and transparent auction listings available, we cannot claim they are perfect analyses of any of the vehicles for sale. We offer far greater opportunity for bidders to view, or arrange inspections for each vehicle thoroughly prior to bidding than traditional auctions, and we never stop encouraging bidders to take advantage of this. We do take a good look at the vehicles delivered to our premises for sale, but this only results in our unbiased personal observations, not those of a qualified inspector or other professional, or the result of a long test drive.

Additionally, please note that most of the videos on our site have been recorded using simple cameras which often result in 'average' sound quality; in particular, engines and exhausts notes can sound a little different to how they are in reality.

Please note that this is sold as seen and that, as is normal for used goods bought at auction, the Sale of Goods Act 1979 does not apply. See our FAQs for more info, and feel free to inspect any vehicle as much as you wish.

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