Stratos making a comeback

Posted on Aug 15, 2010 by

It was possibly the weirdest rally car ever and possibly in the top five of the weirdest ever production cars, but it was also one of the sexiest sportscarss of the 1970s: the Lancia Stratos.

Now it’s been reborn for the 21st century and is looking better and more dynamic than ever. It is still in at prototype stage but was spotted at ’s Balocco track in Northern Italy in June.

When it goes into production, which is looking evermore likely, plans could see the Stratos sporting a lithe and powerful mid-mounted V8 Ferrari engine, most likely from the F430 – just as the original Stratos ran a Dino V6 powerplant.

The prototype shown here faithfully follows the original inspired Bertone design, built specifically to take part in world rallying. This includes the diving front bonnet (without the flip-up headlights), protruding wheel-arches, wrap-around windscreen, subtle built-in roof spoiler, large rear ‘flick’ spoiler, and the single round rear taillights – even the twin five-spoke alloy rims are a direct homage to those used on the Alitalia-sponsored HF cars of the 1974 World Rally Championship.

Only 492 official Stratos cars were built – just enough to satisfy the production regulations to enable them to take part in international rallying. Unfortunately for you and me, there’s a  strong likelihood that this latest incarnation will also be made in limited numbers.

The concept Stratos was penned by Jason Castriota whose CV also includes working on the Ferrari 599 GTB Fiorano, Maserati GranTurismo, concept cars like the Maserati Birdcage and the Rolls Royce Hyperion.

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