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Author Topic: Delta press release at the Geneva show  (Read 4423 times)
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YKR 567J
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« on: 06 March, 2008, 10:05:27 AM »

I was at the Geneva show press day so I thought I would post this. It's the Delta part of the press pack.

The unveiling started late because Fiat hadn't finished telling us about the eco-friendly 500 Aria, and the announcement was (understandably) in Italian so I couldn't get the finer detail. But the cars looked dramatic and the vibe was very positive.

Here it is...

John Simister


Lancia Delta, global premiere


Delta, a historical name representing one of the peaks of Lancia's automotive history but also a mathematical symbol which represents change, difference, evolution.
In this sense, Lancia Delta is one of the first cars in a new Lancia philosophy. A unique and original position, synthesis of two fundamental Lancia brand values, the elegance of style and the audacious innovative nature, which inspires every marketing and communication activity.
This is the first totally new vehicle in the second Lancia centenary, the Delta. Blessed with an unrivalled design faithful to the innovative calling of the brand.  For the product features and international development work backing the launch predicted for the middle of 2008, Delta represents a turning point in Lancia's history and will contribute significantly to the strategic plan.

Perfect stylistic balance for the Lancia of the future

The first advanced “delta” is represented by the capacity to reconcile the traditional elegance of Lancia with original architectural solutions, which for the first time combine harmoniously the plucky personality of a sport vehicle with the on-board comfort of a saloon.
Designed by the Centro Stile Lancia, the new Delta brings into the future the tradition of the “great” Lancias – such as the Aprilia, Appia, Fulvia, Beta, Prisma, Dedra and the Lybra. Back in the fore-front is the medium sized saloon. Delta is 4,5 metre long, 1,8 metre wide and 1,5 metre high. Measurements, which when coupled to a wheelbase of some 2,7 metres, guarantee an extraordinary habitability for it's segment.   
Il nose of Lancia Delta is aggressive and important, emphasised by the volume of the mudguards and characterized by an imposing radiator grill, brand-name symbol. A harmonious convergence of the well sculpted bonnet and the fluid lines of the wheelhouse, while the dynamic aspect of the vehicle is underlined by the broad air intake, witness to the fiery temperament of the Lancia Delta. Rendering the vehicle even more sporty and technological are a set of innovative spotlights, true high-tech engineering jewels, framed by a line of LED's. 
Sidewise, the Lancia Delta shows great dynamism, with a high beltline and trapezoidal rear pillars, a natural support for the nautically inspired “flying bridge” roof. Contributing to the smooth lines of the vehicle are both the chromed moldings - perfectly integrated in the weatherstrips emphasising the “flying bridge” – and the opaque grey chromatic contrast in the lower-part of the door sill, which recalls the roof's two colours, in clear homage to the Lancia tradition.
The broad glazed roof surface – with a specific diverging development of the uprights towards the rear area – terminates in the spoiler, perfectly integrated with the original wraparound backlight and the modern conception which does away with the perimeter structure. And the same stylistic originality can be found in the rear, where the vertical LED headlamps, an expression of advanced technology, further enhance the elegant Lancia Delta lines.
A fascinating and innovative range, that finds a perfect balance in the interior – quiet, bright, rich in luxurious materials and harmonious colours – guaranteeing unrivalled comfort. As shown by the sound absorbing roof panel which ensures a quiet drive, while the generously dimensioned side windows provide plenty of light, together with he optional extralarge sunroof which takes up 80% of the total surface. An exclusive wide and protective space is born: like the interior of a Lancia car should be. Fully in line with the Lancia tradition, the front area is characterized by soft surfaces and linings in high-quality material. From leather to Alcantara – and a “important” dashboard made with Benova®, an innovative material and noble polyurethane base product which features the same tactile and visual sensations as real leather (the product is registered by Benecke-Kaliko and has up to now been used in top of the line vehicles, such as the Maserati).   
Furthermore, the central console is particularly attractive, as the “ideal technological plate” seems to “fluctuate” upon the surface below. This ideal overlapping is further emphasised by the original white lighting which spills out of the console and illuminates the buttons of the original three-dimensional form. In addition, all driving controls - console, driving-wheel, climate controls and the “infotainment” application – have been given the same chromatic treatment and are made of the same materials, with a metallic and technological effect which enhances the entire dashboard, to underline their important function.
The unmistakable Lancia class can be seen in the chromed detail on the controls: from the climate control and radio dials, to the door handles and console controls. At the same time, the steering-wheel of the new Delta recalls, in a contemporary key, the historical “four spoke”, and the same applies to the elegant gearshift knob.
Comfort and pleasant well-being also for those who recline on the rear seats. Not only because they are real armchairs which provide excellent comfort, but also due to the rear habitability of the new Lancia Delta (which has a  wheelbase of over 2,7 metres) being among the best in the range. The interior becomes a living room, thanks to the sliding rear seat with adjustable back, which further increases the capacity of the already spacious boot. By tilting or backing the seat, total relaxation is on hand, full extention becoming available as on business class seats of intercontinental flights.   

Innovative technology for maximum on board comfort

The highest expression of sought-after Italian exclusivity, the Lancia Delta   compartment confirms itself as a veritable living-room able to accommodate passengers in a unique environment for class and comfort, as well as being highly technological. 
Thanks to a collaborative effort with the best partners in each sector, the Lancia Delta offers the most advanced accessories and systems in the entertainment field: for example, you can experience the exciting musical quality of the Blaukpunt radio, or the Hi-fi Bose®sound system (optional) with CD and MP3 player complete with controls on the steering wheel. Otherwise, you can access the innumerable features of the Blue&Me®, a system made in collaboration with Microsoft, fitted with: Hands-off and Bluetooth® interface and advanced voice recognition, USB port, MP3 player and SMS interpreter (also available in SatNav version).
Lastly, debuting on the Lancia Delta is a brand new satellite navigation system. Designed in cooperation with Magneti Marelli, this innovative device offers high multi-media performance, great ease of use, and perfect integration of a host of features in one system: from USB interface to voice commands and map management through SD cards on the high-definition screen.

Engine and mechanics with elegance and temperament

The Lancia Delta expresses it's cardinal values – elegance and temperament – even in the engines and mechanics. Before anything, the “temperament” of its petrol and diesel power units are distinguishable by the innovative technology and performance. All turbocharged and coupled to 6-speed transmission (manual, robotized or automatic). The Lancia Delta engines available from launch will be three: 1.4 litre, 120 HP and 150 HP TurboJet (both petrol) and the 1.6 litre 12° HP MultiJet turbodiesel (Euro 5), which will also be coupled to an advanced robotized transmission. To these will be added 2 new engines: the 2.0 MultiJet with 165 HP and the 1.9 Twinturbo MultiJet with 190 HP.
Subsequently the range will be completed by another innovative engine: the 1.8 Di Turbojet with 200 HP (direct fuel injection mated to a modern automatic 6-speed gearshift). All Euro 5, these three units confirm the Lancia brand as an industry standard in terms of technology and innovation for the entire automotive panorama.
Elegance in the forms and materials, but also “elegance” in their relationship with the outside world. As regards the environment, the Lancia Delta by using diesel engines, anticipates the limits imposed by the future Euro 5 norms. This characteristic surely adds another “delta” on top, in comparison to the competition.
Lastly, the engine performance is tested  mechanically and optimized for comfort and handling via the use of technical solutions unique in their field. Starting with the ESC(Electronic Stability Control), an evolved system stability control, which in comparison to the systems available up to now, adds numerous and important functions, such as for example the LTF (Linearization Torque Feedback) which noticeably improves the road handling feel curves, especially at high-speed; and the TTC (Torque Transfer Control), an innovative function which – by simulating electronically the presence of the self-locking differential – improves traction   on turns, noticeably diminishing understeer and ensuring more dynamicity in the drive.
It's worth mentioning that the innovative control system ESC always intervenes in a discreet manner thanks to the DST (Drive Steering Control). In fact, the “active electronic steering wheel” already carries out the adjustments and controls the oversteer on slippery surfaces. 
Still at the forefront of technological advances, the Lancia Delta adopts the SDC (Synaptic Damping Control) suspension, which, on one side improves the ease of shifting gears, in particular elevating the filtering on uneven surfaces; on the other, it exalts yet further driving pleasure by improving the road handling under any conditions (the system actively regulates the  stability depending on the driving surface and driving technique).
Completing the set-up is a semi-automatic parking system SPS (Semiautomatic Parking System) which guides the steering, leaving to the driver the task of accelerating and braking to complete the manoeuvre. The HALF (Haptic Line Feedback) system, helps by acting on the steering, and warning the driver if the vehicle has slipped out of gear.
In synthesis, all these devices have the task of simplifying and improving the driving experience, so much so that – taken all together – they are part of the all-embracing concept of “VIP Driving”.


More than a 1.000 customizations “made to measure”

Aimed at a demanding clientele who love to be distinct, the new Delta combines stylistic elegance with sought-after materials and care in the details, as well as those particular innovations and sporty features, which historically have distinguished the Lancia cars for over a century. It is precisely in the combination of colours, cloths and materials that the model's exclusivity is born. Suffice to say that the client can chose over a 1.000 personalizations. An extraordinary range born by combining 3 outfittings, 4 different seat upholsteries, 3 interior colours, 5 types of alloy wheels, 12 chassis colours and 12 “two-tone” matchings.     
Therefore, whatever the level of personalization, the Lancia Delta is always fascinating and original, with full respect for the world famous Italian elegance. The model renews the Lancia tradition, by playing with contrasts, highlighting the importance of detail and artisan work, and offering interiors with sough-after performance, all with the maximum personalization of the different outfits. This is why, every version of the new car is a truly “made-to-measure” suit. 

Delta: a name which has entered international motoring history

The Lancia Delta is born in the autumn of 1979, in 1980 it is voted “car of the year” by a jury of specialized journalists. The bodywork has a strong personality, the engine is high-performance, and the model represents a true generation leap, both in terms of the global concept of the vehicle, and for its engineering, style and quality. It's not by chance that the public finds in the delta excellent performance, care in the finish and the generosity of the materials typical of the great Lancia's.
The two-volume body-line owes its debt to the pen of Giorgetto Giugiaro, who gives life to a trapezoidal form with very angular contours. Among the original features are the front and rear bumpers which include the grills made in polyester resin reinforced by glass fibres. 
The mechanical architecture is made-up by a front-wheel traction with transverse engine, suspension with four independent wheels, braking system with two crossed circuits and rack and pinion steering. There are two power units available on launch: 1.3 with 75 HP and a 1.5 with 85 HP. Both are fitted with a cam shaft controlled by a toothed belt. The cylinder head is a light alloy casting.
Taken as a whole, the Delta comes across as a compact and elegant car, less than 4 metre long. We are in 1979, and the Delta, a small family car, offers the accessories of a luxury car (including, for example, electric windscreen wipers). The idea of a vehicle with innovative style and features typical of top of the range models, is introduced by Lancia as a compact saloon which received immediate widespread approval from the public and critics alike. 
Began in Lingotto, a factory in Turin, production of the Delta is then transferred to the Chivasso plant, which is host to most advanced spray systems in the world. An electronic control system for working on the body and an automated plant which ensures total quality of sub-assemblies. From here roll out the “personalized” LX versions, and in 1982 the Delta GT with a 1.6 105 HP engine. The car is fitted with four disc brakes with brake servo. Top-speed is 180 km/h.
In 1983, four years after the debut, the Delta HF Turbo is born. It's the first standard Lancia car with turbo. The engine is still 1585 cc, but it delivers 130 HP, for a top speed of 190 km/h.
Three years later, in 1986, the model range is renewed and broadened: with a Delta GT electronic injection 108 HP, 2.0 turbo 80 HP, HF Turbo injection (140 HP) and HF 4WD. The latter, together with the Prisma 4WD, marks the entry of Lancia in the 4WD saloon segment. It is fitted with a two litre 165 HP engine (top speed 208 km/h) and advanced mechanics. The traction system includes front differential, epicyclic central differential which distributes torque asymmetrically (56% to the front axle and 44% to the rear), a viscous Ferguson joint applied to the central differential and a Torsen (“torque sensing”) differential at rear, an intelligent device which distributes torque between the two wheels depending on adhesion without completely locking the two half shafts. In this way the Delta HF 4WD can transfer to the ground all the engine power in the correct manner. The result is a vehicle with great motricity on low-adhesion surfaces and excellent road handling at high speeds. In subsequent years, the all-wheel drive Delta is made even more appealing by a series of styling and technical improvements, especially dictated by demands from the world of competition. Between 1987 and 1992 the Delta sport models are six time winners of the World Rally Championship
The Delta was in production from 1979 to 1994. Almost half a million units were produced.
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YKR 567J
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« Reply #1 on: 06 March, 2008, 10:19:08 AM »

And now, three of the pictures...


* 01_Lancia Delta.jpg (126.19 KB, 499x369 - viewed 150 times.)

* 02_Lancia Delta.jpg (117.03 KB, 499x369 - viewed 162 times.)

* 03_Lancia Delta.jpg (92.4 KB, 499x384 - viewed 158 times.)
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YKR 567J
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« Reply #2 on: 06 March, 2008, 10:20:31 AM »

And finally, the other three in the press release...


* 04_Lancia Delta.jpg (115.37 KB, 499x421 - viewed 159 times.)

* 05_Lancia Delta.jpg (159.61 KB, 499x355 - viewed 169 times.)

* 06_Lancia Delta.jpg (119.88 KB, 499x301 - viewed 157 times.)
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« Reply #3 on: 06 March, 2008, 11:37:36 AM »

That sounds great Smiley can't wait to see a full review in ai.
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« Reply #4 on: 06 March, 2008, 01:48:04 PM »

Thanks John, much appreciated.
As someone who curses the hard leading edge of car seats that cut of my circulation on a long trip, I'm pleased to see the innovative way the cushion curves so that there's no sharp edge, I shall be interested to see if it's as comfortable as it looks.

Brian
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« Reply #5 on: 11 March, 2008, 06:31:06 PM »

So what did those that went think of the new Delta? It doesn't seem to have enjoyed anything other than quiet indifference in the press in Europe - and the reaction seems mixed on several European websites I have looked at.
What the considered opinion - good, bad, indifferent, over/under-whelmed Huh?
And has anyone got any proper photos, rather than the staged PR ones ?
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« Reply #6 on: 11 March, 2008, 08:25:24 PM »

The new Lancia Delta is bigger than a Golf but smaller than a BMW 3 Series. And priced from £14,000 although expect to pay near £19,000 for the 1.9 diesel with a few extras. In essence it is a bigger Ypsilon albeit with five doors. By the way the next generation Ypsilon will also have five doors. Sadly, it is clear from the word go the new car has no sporting pretention, Fiat look to Alfa Romeo for performance and to Lancia for elegance. Perhaps not what we wanted to hear but at least it reflects the past. Being very harsh the white cars in some strange way reminded me of an updated BL wedge Princess. Also in the negative Abarth have no plans to produce their own version. Regarding launch plans the first right hand drive cars are scheduled for Oct/Nov build. I guess that means early 2009 in UK showrooms. Was I disappointed? Well, I went back next day and the enthusiasm exuded by the Fiat representatives impressed me. Fiat is taking the project seriously and if the new Delta takes off then we may see at the very least a SUV version within a year and a half. At the moment there is little about the new car that makes it stand out. Currently, and compared with cars of the past it is not a Lancia. 
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« Reply #7 on: 12 March, 2008, 10:40:46 AM »

Continued.

Zagato took space at Geneva to show their version of the Bentley and what a storming car, really something special. I guess in essence this is what I was hoping for from Fiat. a one off project Delta taking centre stage and incorporating a bunch of classic features designed to trigger reminders of Lancia's illustrious past. I would also call the new car Delta B10 Berlina (or if the project was a special three door, a B20). Incidently, the production car interior also has no association with the past, another missed oppotunity, instead this is a regular Fiat dash without any warmth derived from historical repeats. Five minutes in a 500 and you will know what I mean. Why not a roll top or some bare paint, why not add Aurelia shape to the instrument pack? How about a twist and push starter?Im not saying we should hit the heart strings too hard but any new car needs discussion points otherwise, what are the press going to write about?
Technically the engineering is well used on other models and can be considered old hat. To be a Lancia it needs to be radical, at least a fuel cell, a combined diesel/electric or a bio-choice switch-over. Maybe all three. And does the car really have to be front wheel drive? Lets have the gearbox or transmission back where it belongs, in the back under the floor. That will get journelists on the case!
None of the above interferes with plans to differentiate between brands, Alfa can still do performance and Lancia elegance while the Fiat product is there to serve the masses. But unless Lancia is a real Lancia (and buyers know the diffence) it will fade away.
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« Reply #8 on: 12 March, 2008, 11:09:20 AM »

Thanks for the write up. It kind of summarises what I have read on other sites. Whilst not in the market for this type of car myself, I do very much want it to be a success to give Lancia the encouragement to push on. I am hoping that success with the core product lines will lead to some niche or specialist lines that will tempt me, and return the allure of the badge. I guess the jury is still out.
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« Reply #9 on: 13 March, 2008, 06:42:53 PM »

Well as another who has seen it Neil, my jury has well and truly come to a decision - the Delta is a very fine car indeed, you'll be pleased to know.  Lets get it into perspective, Fiat has positioned Lancia as its prestige brand, and not its sporting brand.  It needs to be pragmatic, to make money and to attract buyers to the brand.  So I went to Geneva very much as a potential buyer, to size up some of the competition for my company car choice - including new launches such as the new Honda Accord.  And having spent six hours doing just that I have come to the conclusion that there is nothing on the market at present, in its class and price bracket (and more expensive too) which matches the Delta for style, space and sheer class.  It is a beautiful car to look at, with real presence, is, apart from one or two pre-production rough edges, really very well finished with high quality materials and a lot of style.  The front seats are very comfortable, and the driving position very fine.  In the back, there is bags of legroom (much more than most of its competitors), though because you sit up higher than the front passengers, those over 6' may be cramped for headroom - though Steve Gales, who was with me and is 6' was very comfortable in the back.  But because you do sit up high, the back seat experience is very light, airy, spacious and pleasant. Have no doubt, this is a very good car.

Peter - when Lancia made beautifully (over) engineered cars full of innovation, it failed to make money, which is why Fiat own it now.  The 500 is a wonderful car, and has more of a retro feel than the Delta - but it would have been a big risk to try and replicate that outside of the small car market, a risk that might have killed the brand.  Fiat have been pragmatic, but they have, within those parameters, produced a very fine car, and one which I will be ordering so long as they get it to the UK in time, in preference to lesser cars from BMW, Audi and Honda.
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« Reply #10 on: 13 March, 2008, 07:36:12 PM »

Whilst i admire the loyalty of the comments below, and of course want to see it succeed, I'll wait to see if the hords rush past the bmw /audi dealer to buy it!.Looks ok but maybe a bit fussy in appearance without being quite aggressive enough around the nose.Just my humble opinion and let's hope it sells well....
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« Reply #11 on: 13 March, 2008, 08:16:45 PM »

The problem I faced when taking on the role of fleet manger was casting aside emotion and being downright realistic. Sure the new Delta looks cutesy wootsy spinning around on its Geneva plinth but in the end the only thing that counts in this world is money. Whoever sells these cars in the UK will be doing for money, not because they have a picture of Vincenzo hanging on the wall. They know that free choice and dreaming is a wonderful thing but when it comes to parting with hard earned cash they also know not many hard bitten Lancia enthusiasts will actually walk through the door and sign on the dotted line. Not surprising when the nagging voice of concious tells you that the chunk of metal standing on the driveway is going to reduce in value by maybe 65% in just three years. Only mad people do that when a real good driving car such as the Focus is on hand. Five years ago the Lancia brand was introduced into Denmark, sharing floorspace with Alfa Romeo. Customers shunned Lancia and spent their money on BMW. So if your asking my opinion as a cynic, will Lancia take off in the UK and, should I buy a new Delta"?, Well, my answer would have to be. To hell with What Car Magazine, just throw caution to the wind, go ahead and do it. After all, we only live once. I for one am going to buy one. But only after
 twelve months when the big discounts are hanging in the air.  
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« Reply #12 on: 13 March, 2008, 08:18:15 PM »

sorry, left an 'it' out
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« Reply #13 on: 13 March, 2008, 09:04:31 PM »

I agree with all of Chris's comments.  We went straight to the Lancia stand (obviously) and my first impression was good although I must admit I wasn't initially 'wowed' by its looks.

We then spent the next few hours looking for Chris's 'next' company car and on returning to the Lancia stand it did then look striking compared to its rivals and I think it would be even better in bolder colours (there were 3 white and 1 black car displayed).  The leather interior was particularly comfy, the rear seating position and leg room superb.

One thing we both noticed was that the Lancia stand was the most impressive and indeed busiest of the Fiat group with crowds frequently around the Delta's and I think this above all else bodes well for the future.

Steve

PS. All the comments about Formule 1 hotels are true!
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« Reply #14 on: 13 March, 2008, 09:08:42 PM »

The decision for me is, fortunately, simpler.  What car do I tell my fleet manager I want - and in my case, that is without question the Delta.  And I wouldn't choose it unless it was IMHO the best car for me - because in the end I have to drive this thing to and from work every day, and plough up and down the country in it - so it has to be right.  And if the Honda Accord, or the Renault Laguna, or the Audi A3, had the same impact on me as the Delta when I looked at them side by side at Geneva yesterday, then one of them would have got my vote, no question.

It has exactly that same air of 'I want it' class that has made the Ypsi such a success, and ensured that the Musa (another fine car which I saw in the metal for the first time yesterday) has outsold the Idea, and is also a sales success for Fiat. And its exactly the same 'I want it' that the 'cutesy-wootsey' 500 has, and means that you had to queue at Geneva to sit in one, just as you had to queue to sit in the Delta.  Its a damn good car, with real showroom appeal.

Whats it like to drive?  What are its residuals?  How will the dealer network perform?  Three very important questions which are still to be answered, but on first impressions the omens on at least the second of those must be good, simply because the car exudes quality and style.  Will it take sales from other prestige competitors? - it ought to, but then I've never understood the allure of a 1 series or Audi A3, other than as dull 'appliances' - even more so since I've driven a 1 series for two years.  The first step, at least is there - the Delta is a really attractive car, and a really good package.  There is of course much more to do, but lets acknowledge what has been achieved thus far. Lancia have made a success of their other models, there is no reason to suspect they cannot do it with the Delta.
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