The Lancia Gamma Berlina was in production from 1976 until 1984. Styled by Pininfarina, it is a front-engine, front wheel drive saloon range seating five adults.
The Gamma replaced the Lancia 2000, itself a development of the Flavia. With new 2.5 litre flat four engine, the Gamma was intended as Lancia’s range topper to sit above the Beta – and in design terms was essentially a larger verson of the same theme. A front wheel drive fastback saloon with a sporting bent, the Gamma was initially only available as a 2.5 litre, though a 2.0 followed for the Italian market to slip under the tax threshold which made larger engines punitive. Later, a fuel injected variant known as the Gamma IE was launched, though it shared the same power output. Fiat had intended the car use its V6, as found in the Fiat 130, but Lancia developed its own flat four for the car. Plans for a new 3.0 or 4.0 V6 developed by Lancia never came to fruition.
15272 Lancia Gamma Berlinas were produced between 1976 and 1984 – the model was not as popular as had been expected, in no small part owing to the reputation for corrosion Lancia had earned through the Beta debacle but also to the lack of popularity of larger models in the marque’s native Italy. The Gamma was replaced by the Thema, which was produced under joint development with SAAB and which would also form the basis or the Fiat Argenta’s replacement the Croma.
Alternatives to the Lancia Gamma Berlina then and now would include the Ford Granada and the Rover SD1. However, Lancias were typically bought by left field types who chose a car on the basis of its engineering and style rather than mere size and price. A better pair of alternatives to consider might be the Audi 100 and the Citroen CX. Lancia Gamma owners would certainly have aspired to the Mercedes-Benz W123, even if they might have struggled to justify the outlay.