click above for more high-res images of the Alfa Romeo 8C Competizione

Reports are emanating from Holland on Lancia's upcoming product-led rejuvenation, and for the niche Italian automaker, the future looks bright. At the Geneva Auto Show next month, Lancia is expected to unveil the production version of the new Delta, previewed by the Delta HPE show car (pictured above) from the 2006 Paris auto salon. Expected to begin production this summer, the Delta will be built on a stretched Fiat Bravo platform with unique bodywork and a more luxurious interior swathed in leather and Alcantara trim. Lancia executives are said to be considering hardtop-convertible and crossover variants, but that's only the start of Lancia's product-led rejuvenation.

A replacement for the miniscule Ypsilon hatchback is expected to be unveiled next year, while a replacement for the Musa minivan is anticipated to follow, unfortunately based on the outdated platform of the Fiat Idea MPV. The flagship Thesis sedan, which never seemed to have won the hearts of more conservative buyers, is tipped to be cancelled altogether. But fret not, for Lancia is said to have an even better trick up its sleeve for a new flagship of a different sort. If the reports from AutoVisie are to be believed, Lancia is working on an exotic sportscar of its own based closely on the knee-bucklingly sumptuous Alfa 8C Competizione and expected to revive the Aurelia nameplate. Lancia's sister company Alfa Romeo has already sold out its limited run of 500 coupes, and should have no problem finding lucky owners for the upcoming edition of 500 roadsters, either. That leaves the highly acclaimed chassis, developed by Ferrari and built by Maserati, up for grabs in the Fiat Group parts bin, and Lancia is reportedly the one doing the grabbing.

[Source: AutoTelegraaf.nl]





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