In 1922 all cars were built with a separate chassis. All the mechanical
parts like engine, gearbox and axles were fitted to the chassis and a
body was bolted on top of it. Often the body was built by an independent
coachbuilder, though after 1920 an increasing number of car manufacturers
set up their own in-house body department.
Chassis and body were designed as two separate entities and a chassis
with heavy rails may look very rigid, but most certainly isn’t.
With the Lambda Vincenzo Lancia did away with the chassis and made a body
of load-bearing unitary construction. The Lambda was the first series-produced
car to be made in this way and it was stronger, lighter and had greater
torsional stiffness than all other contemporary cars. The body was an
integral part of the design right from the start. Both the boot and the
propshaft tunnel are important structural elements of the body, while
fitting the seats on either side of the propshaft gave the Lambda its
extremely low profile.
An aluminium engine of 2,1 litres capacity was of narrow-V configuration
with a shaft-driven overhead camshaft. The Lambda was the first Lancia
to have four-wheel brakes and independent front-suspension. This used
a ‘sliding-pillar’ design where the wheel slides up and down
on the king pin, supported on a coil spring and with a built-in telescopic
shock-absorber. It combines a minimum of unsprung weight with a perfect
vertical movement and is found on all Lancias till the late 1950s.
|Four door unitary ‘Torpedo’,
from the 8th series reduced to a platformchassis.
Aluminium V4 with an inclined angle of 13° and an overhead camshaft,
2120 cc. 49 pk, 2370 cc. 60 pk, 2570 cc. 69 pk.
Three speed, from 1925 four speed.
Beaded edge, from 1928 15x50 ‘normale’ Michelin tyres.
3100 mm and 3450 mm.
Approximately 1225 kg.