Tuesday, June 30, 2009

2 Interesting Cars From Two Different Eras... Devin and Lancia

1957 Alfa Engined Devin - This isn't so much about this car, which is certainly interesting, but more about the man who designed the body, Bill Devin.

Devin was probably best known for his "kit cars". What made Devin's company unique is the fact that Devin produced over 25 different bodies to fit various frames. But there was much more to Devin than just kit cars...

Bill Devin died in 2000 at age 85. There are two very good websites dedicated to him and his cars...

Bill Devin's Homepage can be found here.

"Eceterini" has some nice Devin info, magazine reprints and pictures. Fine it here.

Click here to see the eBay listing for the Alfa Romeo engined 1957 Devin.

1994 Lancia Intergrale EVO II - I like these cars a lot. I realize it's fairly expensive and you can get some "officially imported" cars that can do almost as much as the Lancia, but there is just something really cool about the Integrale that makes it extremely desirable in my eyes. If all things were equal (meaning parts availability, US dealer network, etc.) and I had a choice between this car and an Audi S4, I'd go with the Lancia.

This is one of the all time great Rally cars. Fast (0-60 in 5.6 seconds) and with AWD, it dominated European Rally Racing for many years.

An interesting bit of trivia... The Integrale Evoluzione is, of course, based on the Lancia Delta. Lancia Deltas were sold by Saab dealers in Sweden and Norway as the Saab-Lancia 600 (in 2WD form only). How cool would it be to import one those and bring it to your local Saab meet? It wouldn't be too tough to do if you could find one. The newest Saab-Lancia 600 is now 27 years old, making it exempt from DOT and EPA rules.

The Lancia Integrale Evoluzione was never officially imported into the US. This car is in the U.S. and the seller says it has a clear title. Click here to see the eBay listing.

RallyCars.com has a really well done article on the Lancia Delta Integrale. Click here to find it.

Click here for a brief blurb on the Saab 600 (Oddly, there isn't much written about this car)


hoov23 said...

I would be weary of any Integrales in the USA for the time being (until the 25 year mark) as they are not "supposed" to be legal here yet. I was a buyer for one about a year ago from another person in NY that had a red Evo I with plaid interior which a clear NY title, which he showed me, but would not provide any import documentation and his supposed RI wouldn't either. A car having a title in one state does NOT necessarily mean that one will be issued in another state, so I walked. Some states are give out titles more easily than others, but if the car has US DOT and EPA import docs from an RI then you SHOULD be able to get one in any state. Can't wait until these things come of age - it would be a great daily driver. Inconspicuous to most people, but a blast of a car with a great history.

Just A Car Geek said...

Hi Hoov -

I agree. Being an Alfa fan I well remember the Autodelta debacle. People who bought Spiders from them wound up having their cars seized.

I guess I should have written "caveat emptor" (a dozen times or more) somewhere in the post.

Thanks for bringing up that info.

The Lancia is such a great car I couldn't resist writing about it.


Richard said...

Funny you should bring up the Autodelta debacle, whatever happened to those guys? I remember viewing a 96 Alfa Spider in LA before I came to my senses, I believe that car had just been driven up from Mexico. Had US plates and a registration from the 60's....hmmm..right.

I doubt the Lancia is even in the US, looks like the guy is in Canada and has a "facility" in New York. Mentions very little about the car too...hmmmm.. Still, an amazing machine, I am with Hoov, counting down the years till these things become easy to import, actually, TVR Griffith would be on the top of my list...now if I could only get past the CA Smog laws :(

Just A Car Geek said...

Re: Autodelta

Carlos Giordano & Alessandro Giordano (the father and son team who ran Autodelta) were arrested and fled the country.

They are now on the EPA's "Most Wanted" list...


From what I remember, they were asking a ton of money for the cars, which kept most Alfisti, like me, from considering one.

Good thing, too. If you were unfortunate enough to have bought one, your car was seized and you received zero compensation.


Richard said...

I had no idea it got to the stage of wanted posters and fleeing the country. I remember there was a lot of talk on Alfa BB, some felt pity, others well in full support of the law, I even read a couple of posts that they were going to attempt to get DOT and EPA approvals. Who knows, I feel sorry for the Alfa fans who lost out on there cars and money.

Since your an Alfa guy, I don't suppose you know what there bringing over to the US? I was hoping the Brera but I have not found any reports which suggest this.

Just A Car Geek said...

The whole "wanted poster" thing is a little bizarre.

I've heard all sorts rumors about what Alfas may or may not come over.

The worst I've heard is that they'll be a series of new Alfas built on Chrysler platforms.

I, too, would love to see the Brera come over.