1924 Lancia Lambda Torpedo TourerSOLD

Tourer

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Registration No: CY 8115
Engine No: 2274
CC: 2121
Colour: Black / Red
Trim Colour: Black
MOT: Aug 2011

Reference Number 126363

as of 5/17/2011

Overview
Car 1924 Lancia Lambda Torpedo Tourer
VIN 12282 
Mileage 50,311 miles 
Transmission Manual Shift 
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Known History

Current ownership since 1958

 

The extraordinarily innovative Lancia Lambda was unveiled to the public at the 1922 Paris Salon and was developed through 9 Series over a nine year reign. It's said that Vincenzo Lancia envisioned the Lambda after considering the strength required by a ship's hull to resist the forces of the oceans. The result was the world's first monocoque motorcar body, eliminating at a stroke the need for a heavy, separate chassis. Much of the strength was derived from the transmission tunnel that formed the backbone of the car. What's more, by seating the passengers beside rather than above the drive shaft, Lancia was able to achieve a lower roofline than was usual at the time.

 

Power came from an equally unique, water-cooled, narrow-angle SOHC V4 engine - it was of 2121cc and 49hp for the first 6 Series of cars, of 2375cc and 59hp for the Series 7 examples and rose to 2569cc and 69hp for the 8 and 9 Series models. On the early cars, the engine was mated to a three-speed manual gearbox, while later Lambdas featured a four-speed unit. While suspension was by conventional semi-elliptic leaf springs and friction dampers at the rear, the front set-up was independent courtesy of pioneering sliding pillars with coil springs accompanied by hydraulic dampers. Braking was by drums all round and steering by worm and wheel.

 

Even the smaller-engined Lambdas were said to be capable of 70mph and, though not marketed as a performance car, the model's much vaunted handling and road holding allowed a modified example to finish fourth overall in the 1927 Mille Miglia - a class-winning performance that was repeated the following year. Production figures for the model vary, but over 11,000 examples are thought to have been produced by the time the Lambda was superseded by the Artena.

 

The Lambda Torpedo Tourer on sale was manufactured in 1924/25. A Series 4 example, it is powered by the 2121cc engine mated to the three-speed gearbox. `CY 8115' features Black coachwork with Red wings and a Black leather interior. The previous keeper was a Roger Castiglioni, whose tenure dated back to 1936 when he was an architectural student at Cambridge, and it took the majority of the vendor's savings to wrest it from Castiglioni for ú75 in 1958. The following year he used it to tour France and Spain and it was his only mode of transport until 1965. The vendor tells us that he has kept the Lancia in good bodily and mechanical condition throughout his 53 years of ownership, and it clear from his comprehensive notes that he has attended to every aspect of the car's needs as a labour of love.

 

He discovered that the Lambda must have suffered an accident to the offside front wheel at some stage, causing damage to the tubular frame behind - this was replaced, as were the running boards and supporting stanchions which had succumbed to general wear and tear. The wing-mounted battery/tool boxes have been repaired and strengthened, while aluminium guards have been fitted underneath the wings to prevent stones affecting the paint above. More authentic than its immediate (and slightly anachronistic) `fold flat' predecessor, the current `dog leg' windscreen mimics a 1920's design. Mounts exist so that a second screen can been fitted to the back of the front seat to shield the rear passengers. Much of the upholstery is the original black leather, but missing side panels have been replaced and black carpet fitted throughout. A short tonneau has been fabricated for the rear passenger compartment, while the principal one, the second in the vendor's ownership, was made from double duck. A new mohair hood complete with side screens was added some six years ago.

 

The rear petrol tank and engine compartment header tank have been lined in plastic and a filter added to the fuel line. The Nivex exhauster/autovac was recently overhauled. The rear springs have new shackle pins and the ball races in the outer ends of the back axle have been replaced with sealed units. The differential's large ball thrust race has been renewed, as have the driveshaft bearings. The Lancia comes with eight wheels - four beaded edge 820x120 rims and four 19-inch ones. The original front wheel bearings have been replaced by taper roller items and the innovative front suspension overhauled as required.

 

The new engine con rods are lighter than the originals and equipped with shell bearings - the originals come with the car. A modern oil filter and brand new radiator core have been installed. A new starter ring gear was recently shrunk onto the original flywheel. New bearings were fitted to the gearbox, while the water pump and mag/dyno were overhauled and new sparking plugs fitted; complete with suppressors.

 

This charming vintage Lancia comes complete with maintenance manuals, numerous original maintenance tools, notes on repairs carried out and parts made, invoices for the repairs, old MOT certificates, articles on Lambdas etc. There are also a pair of log books detailing journeys, repairs etc dating back to 1981. Cherished and enjoyed for the last half century this wonderful motorcar is now seemingly ready and waiting to give years of pleasure to a new keeper.

 

PLEASE NOTE: A quantity of spares including engines, gearbox, wheels, tyres, etc. are available via separate negotiation. A more complete list can be obtained from the documents office.