In the present family ownership since the 1940s
1924 LANCIA LAMBDA FOURTH SERIES TOURER
Car No. 2052
Engine No. 8952 (see text)
Black with tan leather interior
Engine: Tipo 67. four cylinders in narrow Vee, overhead camshaft, 2,570cc, 69bhp at 3,500rpm, Zenith Triple Diffuser carburettor; Gearbox: three speed manual; Brakes: four wheel mechanical; Suspension: front; Lancia patented independent with sliding pillars; rear; live rear axle with semi-elliptical leaf springs. Right hand drive.
Lancia's 1925 advertising proclaimed the Lambda as "The Best Medium Powered Car in the World", it was they continued "Not built to a price but as a masterpiece of advanced design and engineering skill - to satisfy the most discriminating Motorist who demands the utmost in quality, appearance and performance".
Vincenzo's Lambda was by then already a legend that had re-written the way that a car would be built structurally forever. Penned in 1919, the car was years ahead of its time, featuring a monocoque chassis, sliding pillar front suspension, vee four engine and four wheel brakes. It created a car that was low, spacious and offered good performance. Designed as a tourer it has sports car handling and road holding and achieved standards and solutions to car design decades before other manufacturers thought of them. Today they are enthusiastically appreciated for these characteristics across the world, providing a usable pre-war car that can comfortably keep up with modern traffic.
This example of the sporting Lambda came into the present Californian family ownership in the 1940s. Owing to its unusual, but seemingly original sprung front bumper, a feature which was offered on U.S. delivered cars, it is quite possible that the car has been in America from new.
In general the car may be described as scruffy having spent many years laid up in a garage, however it does appear to be ostensibly complete and correct and as such is a good example of this iconic model. Most probably once restored and now mellowed in age, it has a rather charming patina.
At some stage the car has been repainted in the present black livery which may well have been its original colour. The interior has been refurbished in tan leather hide, from the front seat squabs this appears to have been covered over original light green rexine fabric, which was probably original to the car. The upholstery in the front compartment has not been covered and has dried and aged quickly, while the rear which has been covered by a tonneau remains in good order. We have not found a top for the car, so this would seem to have been lost, but the structural top compartment is unaltered and mounting brackets remain in place. The windscreen glass is broken.
At some stage, it is likely that the engine has been replaced by a slightly later unit, no doubt of the larger capacity of the later cars, this wears a plaque proclaiming it to have been reground by Frazier Wright & Co. of Los Angeles, though it is not known when this work took place. Approximately 20 years ago, the Lancia was fettled and put back on the road, at this time an SU type carburettor was fitted and modern fuel pump, the original Autovac and carburettor set up have not been located. It is quite possible that the sealed beam headlights which are fitted inside the original Carl Zeiss shells were added at this stage also. The dash is seemingly unmodified and has a full set of period instruments, including le Nivex fuel gauge, and Jaeger 8 day clock and trip.
On recent inspection the car turned over easily, so it would seem that it would not require much effort to have the car running and it may well be by the day of sale.