Lancia has been on the decline for decades. But those lingering fans of the marque will be disheartened to learn of what Sergio Marchionne plans to do with it next. Speaking with Italian newspaper La Repubblica, Marchionne indicated that the Lancia brand will be stripped down to one model, and even that will only be sold in Italy itself.

If put into action, the step would be just the latest in the long decline of a storied marque. Founded way back in 1906, Lancia gave us such timeless treasures as the Flavia, Fulvia, Stratos and rally-bred Delta, and stood alongside the likes of Alfa Romeo, Maserati and Ferrari as one of the great Italian auto marques. But it wasn't long after it joined those brands under the Fiat Group umbrella in 1969 before it began struggling to find its place. These days it sells the Ypsilon supermini, the Delta hatchback and a series of rebadged Chrysler models, serving as that brand's proxy in Europe (and even then, not in the UK).

With the current Delta on the market since 2008 – now six years ago, if you can believe it – and sales languishing, the Delta is expected to be axed, leaving the Ypsilon (above) as Lancia's only unique model. And with the Fiat and Chrysler groups merging into one, the Chrysler brand itself could take another stab at the European market. Just how long Lancia will last as a brand for Italy exclusively remains to be seen, but it wouldn't be hard to imagine the Ypsilon living out the remainder of its lifecycle as the last new Lancia ever to roam any road anywhere.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 1 Year Ago
      I think Marchionne has a trick in his sleeve. He targets long term revitalization of the brand...Time will show how.
        • 1 Year Ago
        Marchionne has a trick in his sleeve? Well, the guy is quite capable of going out with a $20 bill to buy a newspaper and he'd come back owing a million dollars.
      • 1 Year Ago
      Potentially, a very sad end to a legendary brand. Perhaps, Fiat should steal an idea from the entertainment industry and put Lancia into hiatus. Fiat could reboot the Lancia brand in a few years, after Fiat finishes developing some new platforms which could used for new models.
      • 1 Year Ago
      The current Delta is such an interesting car....hopefully it will be revived down the road for the US market which gobbles these larger family cars. I guess the Ypsilon is not bad either, but definitely not sized right for the US.
      • 1 Year Ago
      As it stands, Lancia is the odd man out at Fiat. Since Lancia was historically a technology leader maybe that's the future direction.
      • 1 Year Ago
      One Delta Integrale HF please!!
      • 1 Year Ago
      the same way that VW can maintain VW, Skoda, SEAT, Audi, Porsche, Lamborghini & Bugatti, Fiat could find enough differentiators to build on Lancias legacy strengths of elegance, sportiness, innovative engineering, integral/all wheel drive, turbo would have been the perfect antidote to Audi while Alfa could have chased BMW. Turning Lancia into a fashion and comfort brand was a lethal injection that it never recovered from...a deliberate misdirection by Alfa 'fans' within the Fiat group...and these Alfa people, sadly didn't do a very good job with Alfa either! What a disaster.
      Aurio Salimonne
      • 1 Year Ago
      They should do this brand as Autobianchi was on the early days of Fiat,create the most advanced card and test them with the public and then spread the advanced to other brands on fiat the front drive Fiat 127,make another really nice and sexy coupe like the Fulvia,elegance four door saloon and used the name Anacoretta.there is a lot to offer from fiat under the Lancia name,don't mess this one up Please!!
      • 1 Year Ago
      Lancia has never properly recovered from the rust debacle with its Beta models in the 1970s, forcing it to ultimately pull out of a number of key international markets as its reputation lingered.
        • 1 Year Ago
        That debacle was in 1980 and it was fabricated by that pillar of reporting, the Daily Mirror.
      • 1 Year Ago
      So sad what they have done with this great brand.
      • 1 Year Ago
      so the boss thinks that chrysler name has more power than lancia...
        • 1 Year Ago
        Chrysler isn't sold in Europe except for the UK, Lancia is. They are both pretty much in bad shape.
      Classic Bob
      • 1 Year Ago
      This is the saddest automotive news of the year so far. Lancia needed a true revival, not rebadged Americana. Unfortunately this strategy has not only killed Lancia, but seriously weakened Chrysler's chance at a European comeback. Hopefully they can pull off a strong launch of the Chrysler 200 in Europe, putting it back on the map. Lancia's outlook looks much dimmer. With few funds left after the Chrysler buyout, most is going to Alfa Romeo's revival. Wish they had the capability to keep Lancia alive, and find funding to restore this marque to it's former glory...
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Classic Bob
        No one was fooled by the rebadged Chryslers and they could not have hit the market at a worse time.
      Julio B
      • 1 Year Ago
      Europe is going through a recession similar to what we had in the US during 2008, Fiat has to do what it has to do to survive.
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