The Lancia Flavia was designed by Professor Antonio Fessia in the late 1950s, and included many technical novelties for the time, such as an ultra smooth horizontally opposed aluminium 4 cylinder engine which, together with its 4 speed gearbox, could be removed for servicing by unbolting the frame; split circuit disc brakes and later, fuel injection. It was also the first Italian production car to be driven via the front wheels. It was introduced for sale in the UK in 1961.
Initially available only as a four-door saloon, this model was soon joined by a two-door coupé, designed by Pininfarina on a shortened platform. Vignale then built 1601 two-door convertibles, designed by Giovanni Michelotti. Zagato, meanwhile, designed a light weight two-door sport version.
The steel-bodied Vignale was based on the shorter coupe type floor pan and was initially equipped with a 1500 cc engine later up-rated to 1.8 litres, and with twin carburettors. The Flavia Sport and Convertible were the rarest and most desirable cars of the Flavia range and looked particularly good with the optional steel hard top. Michelotti, who designed the car for Vignale, obviously had difficulty hiding the rectilinear architecture of the saloon underpinnings and the convertible is quite a square, sober design, though lifted by nice details (including what must be the longest ever model script along the boot lid!), and a Maserati style front, with a pouting grill and twin headlights. The Vignale was a very expensive purchase when new in the UK, and only 49 right hand drive examples were built. This rare car was imported from the UK by our vendor a few years ago and is possibly the only one in South Africa. She comes with a factory hardtop and a comprehensive history file. The registration of the vehicle onto eNatis is underway and can be completed by the vendor at no additional cost.