With Lancia threatening another crack of the whip here in the UK-market (we'll believe it when we see it), Shed brings you a taste of things to come with this the Thema, the last Lancia flagship to grace UK shores.
Now, cynics amongst you - and we know you're out there - may protest the Thema is less than worthy of the illustrious Lancia shield, bearing more than a passing resemblance to the Saab 9000. In fact the cars share the same 'type four' chassis which also formed the foundations for the beautiful Alfa 164 and the, er, Fiat Croma. However as future Lancias look like sharing Chrysler under-duds, Shed wouldn't dream of suggesting such cosy relationships are in any way inappropriate for the brand.
Like the 164, the Thema was designed by Pininfarina who are well known for their competence with a slab of clay - well usually, anyway. Where the Alfa relied on its flowing, graceful lines, the Lancia is a far more brutal affair. Flat-nosed and angry-faced, it looks like it's had one too many bad experiences in a boxing ring - much like the Integrale which unfortunately, as yet eludes Shed's purse.
That's not to say the driving experience need be any less exciting than its rally-bred stablemate. With an engine designed by Aurelio Lampred (formerly of Alfa Romeo and Ferrari), this 148bhp, 2.9 litre V6 example can spirit the Thema to 60 in 8.2sec - before running out of puff at 129mph. Brakes devoid of ABS will remind you of days of old when thoughts turn to stopping, and there's no aircon to go wrong either.
Should you decide to enter into negotiations with the vendor (whose opening gambit is £900), this sparkling silver example has been with in the same hands for the past nine years, covering only 5,000miles in the period. The eagle-eyed amongst you may have noticed the lack of a current MOT, but worry ye not as the owner assures Shed this is a typo and the old girl can - legally at least - stagger on until April 2011.
Although the tatty exterior hints at this Thema reaching its twilight years, all the electrics function. However we have inferred from the ad this may be intermittently, at least as far as the electric windows are concerned, further cementing this fine car's noble Italian credentials.
As well as being mechanically sound, this week's SOTW comes complete with the spares from another two Themas the owner has previously dismantled. Though, quite how reassuring this is, we're not entirely sure...
"Caveat emptor," as somebody once said on the way to the forums.
The advert reads
1988 Lancia Thema Series 1 V6 For Sale
Overall she is in good condition.
Sunroof, Automatic heating (not aircon). Non-ABS version.
Current owner 9 years and 5000 miles.
MOT Apr 2010, Tax Oct 2010.
Bodywork mostly good with the worst parts being a scabby rear wheelarch and the bottom corner of the rear screen.
Electrics all work fine although window switches have their moments.
Rare Car. Loads of spares included (have broken 2 of these over the years). Mostly mechanical and electrical but some trim as well.
Model Thema Series 1 V6
Category Saloons / Estates
Mileage 86500 Miles
LHD / RHD RHD
Location Trowbridge, Wiltshire, UK
Private / Trade Private Car
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