Here's an update on 'Make Lancia Great Again'. This Italian project which plans to recreate Lancia Deltas, is the idea of Eugenio Amos, who styles the company
running the operation as Automobiliamos.
Eugenio's inspiration is to build an Italian modern classic, as Singer have done with Porsche in the USA, and make Lancia great again.
The MLGA project has been created by Eugenio Amos, who is a brave and successful racing car driver. Automobiliamos is Eugenio's masthead for this and any future adventures.
I've talked with Eugenio, who is friendly and helpful, but also very busy!
A Google search will show you how busy he is!
To the right is a Ferrari 308 GTB, that's the car Eugenio first considered for his AA project. This 1980 model has coachwork by Scaglietti, and is shown here in Verde Medio Metallizzato.
This car is in Eugenio's preferred colour, he says 'Green is the new red!'
Eugenio's first thought was to rebuild a 308 Ferrari as the AA project. However, he remembered how special owning a Lancia Delta was, and how a Delta embodies the true Italian spirit. It's not a low slung sports car, but the Delta is fast, fun, and famous. The car is practical, handsome, and an engineering masterpiece.
Eugenio has the resources to choose any car for his project, but he realised no other car could match the Lancia Delta's charisma.
Lancia's demise from a once respected manufacturer is upsetting for most Italian enthusiasts, Eugenio and his team saw their challenge was to make Lancia great again. The Autombiliamos project is known as MLGA...Make Lancia Great Again! Their new car will be a tribute to the Delta's reputation.
Eugenio is a racing driver and businessman, successful in both fields, he has friends in automotive high places. One friend, a stylist at VW, helped Eugenio sketch out a plan.
Brave 3 door decision made here!
Signore Agnelli's Evo2 convertible
The sketches developed the Automobiliamos 'Futurista' concept, keeping the Delta's original aesthetics. The sketches were optimised on computer and development continued.
The time came to make a clay model, Eugenio gave his own 16v to the cause! Modelling clay was applied to one half of his Delta, and the sculpture was professionally refined until the AA team was happy with the design. About this point it was decided to make the new car a 3 door, this decision was helped by the modeller not inserting a back door handle, and the team liked the look!
As in a production car schedule, a 3D scan was then taken, to accurately record all the surface measurements. A craftsman whose previous projects include the Porsche Carrera GT joined the MLGA team, he is involved fabricating the carbon fibre areas of the new car.
There's quite a lot of carbon fibre in Futurista, it features in the style critical areas, so the forming of this material will be
to the highest standard.
Shown to the left is the 'buck' Delta, as in production
car modelling a vinyl film has been applied over the sculptured clay to give a gloss finish to the surface.
The light catching shapes and features can then be
checked in the form of a finished vehicle, and adjusted
Applied modelling clay being sculpted.
As mentioned, Eugenio had given his own 16v to the MLGA cause, after the design and modelling work was completed the car was stripped to its shell. This was sent for galvanic dipping and rust removal treatment.
When the shell was returned it was reinforced to a strict CAD pattern, this strengthening was designed by Abarth for maximum shell rigidity with light weight. A strengthening roll cage was fitted, this is a work of great beauty, being made of TUV approved profiled tube, which is fitted within the shell or very close to it.
The cage is welded very close to the chassis and up the side pillars, integrated into the body so the cage will be covered by the interior trim. The tubes run up the windscreen pillars, door frame and rear quarter, crossing the roof with the low profile tubing.
This work is being carried out to the highest standard, Italian craftsmen have a serious pride in their work, have a look at the welding in the pictures.
Abarth designed body strengthening, front lower
door aperture. Look at that welding!
Here are some more welding photos, the cage is so neatly fitted it will be covered by trim. Inspect that rear turret strengthening.
The brave decision had been made to make the new car a
3 door, so with the rear doors removed, a new rear quarter section was fabricated and hand beaten to shape. A beautiful shape it is too! The swage of the wheel arch is a little wider than standard to cover the new car's wider track, sweeping down to the door edge.
You'll notice the rear light opening is wider than standard, new, wider rear lights will curve around into the hand made side panels.
These lights have been expensive for the AA team to develop, they need approval from TUV, and everywhere the car might be sold. Expensive working samples have to be produced, then sent to the authorities to be approved, this might be returned to AA for adjustment, then re submitted.
Eugenio told me TUV staff are very helpful, and enthusiastic about his project, but getting the lighting right is important, and put a big hole in Eugenio's budget.
The delicate and sympathetic hand beaten rear quarter panel. One piece, and wider than the original.
This is the integrale Evo2 converted into a 2 door drop head for Gianni Agnelli, when the Evo2 was still in production. At the time Agnelli was the boss and largest shareholder of the FIAT group.
This features hand made rear quarters and re-formed front door skins, an opening trunk, with I think, an ex-Dedra lid, and leather upholstered hi-back seats.
The MLGA project's interior is a fresh design.
A cast was made of the original dashboard, the buck was then CNC machined to Eugenio's design. The new dash is sleek and clean, it features analogue dials to respect the Delta's original layout, and to respect Eugenio's budget!
A central LCD display will show the gear currently selected.
The seats and mountings also have to be approved by the authorities. So the original homologated seat mountings will be strengthened but remain the same. A homologated Recaro seat frame will be used, with a tipping function to access the rear seat.
Modern improved seat design and construction, using the original high backs as inspiration.
Here are the first images of Eugenio's beautiful Futurista, at it's introduction in the Grand Basel show, Switzerland
The fine Delta features are clear to see, which have been enhanced and revitalised by Eugenio and his team, flush glass and deep, sharp swage lines being pleasing features. The 2 door format has been perfected, and the car's original tough styling enhanced and improved.
Thanks to the use of carbon fibre, the new car weighs 1250kg, a re-engineered Lancia 2ltr motor gives 330bhp, so it's going to be fast!
Creator and driving force Eugenio Amos on the stand at Basel with Automobiliamos's brave and exciting creation, we thank Eugenio for his generosity in sharing this major project with us.
Eugenio is right to look proud, designing and building a new car is an almost certain route to frustration and financial ruin! But, by using the best of Europe's craftsmen and supporting Italy's fine engineering heritage, Eugenio has created a genuinely exciting new vehicle, which has a
future of great success.
Eugenio and Automobiliamos deserve our praise and support!
The attention to detail is clear to see on Futurista,
the interior, specially cast wheels, carbon fibre trims and vents are of the highest quality.
The paint is a custom mixed colour to Eugenio's specification, and as anyone who knows Eugenio would know, it had to be green!
Perhaps on the production model they could widen
the vent on the C pillar to reduce the rear window width a bit. But that's just my opinion!