"Affordable classic is a term of which we’ve always been a little skeptical. It’s a bit of a cliché. If a car is truly a classic, in the objective measure of the term, then surely it will command "
Lancia Fulvia Coupe
Why is the world’s most beautiful car less than £15k?
Are you dead inside if you don’t fall in love with a Lancia Fulvia?
In coupé form, the car has this charming, cute and rather simple styling – it doesn’t try to seduce you with suggestion. The Fulvia just doesn’t need to dress sexy to win hearts, it is what it is and it’s all the more charming for it.
In an age of swollen classic car prices, a time where warehouses are crammed full of wrapped-up, dormant motoring icons, the Fulvia Coupe is something of a miracle. While its cousins and compatriots have all been picked up to be preserved in the interest of interest, the Fulvia Coupe has been almost untouched. The little coupe still tours the streets of Italy where it gets a great deal of affection for its strong build quality and engineering strength has kept it running even now, 50 years after it was first brought into the world.
Normally, beautiful classic cars are snapped up by the market very quickly, especially if they were also successful in motor racing. The Lancia Fulvia Coupé is significant in that it was the car that Lancia officially came back into motor racing with, having withdrawn from Formula 1 in 1955. It dominated every Italian rally championship, taking all the titles from 1965 to 1973, and in 1972 it was a world champion too, having won rally events in Morocco, San Remo, and also the legendary Monte Carlo.
As you’d imagine from a world rally champion, a Fulvia Coupé drives very well indeed. The little 1.3-litre V4 engine makes a glorious raspy note – proving to modern cars 4-cylinder engines can sound great – and though it only has somewhere between 90 and 130bhp, a Fulvia feels light on its feet and eager to please. It’s front-wheel drive, but that isn’t something that should concern you because in the 1960s front-wheel drive was quite special, and it’s this layout that helped propel the Fulvia Coupé to huge rally success.
Of all the Fulvia’s best characteristics it’s the handling that really shines, it is a brilliantly nimble and agile little machine that gives you all the information you need to make the most of it and it gives the impression of a car that can punch well above its weight – and for the record, it did beat a Porsche 911 S to that Rally Monte Carlo win.
So, why on earth is this beautiful and talented classic still available at such a low price? It was manufactured to a high standard, beautifully finished, dominant in its motorsport category, and it looks like Emily Ratajkowski in a designer dress. Well, in short, there’s no reason for the Fulvia Coupé to be available for under £15k. Who knows why the market has passed it over?
All we know is you should be looking to buy one, because goodness knows how much longer this stunning piece of Italian automotive history will continue to be overlooked.
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