It appears that a rally legend will soon be hitting the streets and dirt roads once again as Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) is reportedly mulling the return of the Lancia Delta Integrale.
According to AutoCar, a few senior executives of the company are pushing for the return of the iconic rally car before FCA eventually makes the brand exclusive only to the Italian market in the near future. If approved, it will probably be the Delta Integrale's last production run as the senior executives stated that there will be no further attempts of rebuilding it in the future.
The plan may be scrapped however as FCA boss Sergio Marchionne is not too keen about the idea as he sees Lancia as a near-defunct company. Marchionne also stated that developing or rebuilding a classic Lancia will become a distraction as he is more focused on the successful relaunch of Alfa Romeo.
Known the world over as one of the earliest high-performance rally cars, the Lancia Delta Integrale won 46 World Rally Championship events and six consecutive manufacturers' titles, competing until 1993.
In an unusual attempt however, then parent company Fiat Auto decided to rebrand Lancia as a luxury automaker, tailoring Alfa Romeo to become the company's sport brand. Ultimately, Lancia failed to become a successful luxury car maker and has been loss-making ever since.
FCA now plans to 'lobotomize' Lancia and will only be exclusively sold in Italy. The automaker currently only sells one nameplate, the Ypsilon, a 5-door hatchback city car originally launched in June 2011.
Source: AutoCar UK