WCF friend and collaborator Marchettino had the special opportunity to drive the limited-run Lancia Stratos HF.

WCF friend and collaborator Marchettino had the special opportunity to drive the limited-run Lancia Stratos HF.

Lancia might be in a coma nowadays but let's not forget they created some impressive cars back in the day, with the Stratos HF (Tipo 829) being their most beloved model. The Bertone-designed, Ferrari Dino-powered Stratos High Fidelity was produced in a limited series of 492 units between 1972 and 1974 and tipped the scales at only 980 kg (2,161 lbs).

The V6 2.4-liter delivered 190 PS (140 kW) which enabled the car to complete the 0-60 mph (0-96 km/h) run in less than five seconds before reaching a maximum speed of 144 mph (232 km/h). The rally-spec version initially had 275 PS (202 kW) in the 12v variant and then it was upgraded to 320 PS (235 kW) in the 24v model. A rally Stratos with a KKK turbocharger bumped output to an enormous 560 PS (412 kW) but the car was limited only to the Group 5 and had some reliability issues.

A Lancia Stratos revival was unveiled in 2010 but never made it as a production variant. It had a V8 4.3-liter engine with 540 PS (397 kW) and more than 500 Nm (369 lb-ft) of torque sent to the road through a 6-speed sequential gearbox. The vehicle used a shortened Ferrari F430 Scuderia-sourced chassis wrapped around in a full carbon fiber body granting a 44:56 weight distribution and an overall weight of 1,247 kg (2,749 lbs).

The modern Stratos did the 0-62 mph (0-100 km/h) run in 3.3 seconds, 0-124 mph (0-200 km/h) in 9.7 seconds on its way onto a top speed of 170 mph (274 km/h). It came with 19-inch alloy wheels shod in Dunlop Sport Maxx tires and had a roll cage while stopping power was provided by Brembo carbon ceramic brakes.

The rejuvenated Lancia Stratos was supposed to enter limited production series but apparently Ferrari blocked this move.