Last November, Lancia teased its “Emozione Pu+Ra” concept. Drawn by lead designer Jean-Pierre Ploué, the showcase looked more like sculpture or a car from 2523 instead of vehicular inspiration for production models that will begin arriving this year. We simply didn’t know how to read the abstractions. Lancia teased another concept earlier this month, this one leading to an eventual battery-electric rebirth of the Lancia Stratos — we made clear connections between the Pur+Ra and what’s ahead. Italy’s given us another taste of what’s to come, this time an overhead shot of the Stratos concept we’re going to see on April 15.
The circle in the roof signifies at least three things. It recalls Stratos themes evident elsewhere in the dual round taillights and the curved lines on the concept that stand in for the vintage car’s louvers. It also represents part of Ploué’s plan for Lancia design, the creative officer saying, “Our designs will be built with iconic shapes like the circle, square and triangle.” Lastly, it signifies what will be a clear panel in the roof, Lancia saying a round aperture lets in more light than a square one. We imagine there will be a few questions about that when the reveal happens.
Automaker CEO Luca Napolitano told media the Emozione Pu+Ra concept embodies the next century of Lancia looks. The Stratos concept aims more near-term. It “will be very close to the production car,” and the bold strokes of the design will guide coming products. That’s not just about sheetmetal, either; the feature set will encompass the path forward for “sustainability, technology and electrification” as well.
The first model to take the revolution to European car buyers will be a new, all-electric generation of the Ypsilon expected later this year. The supermini hatch is the only car Lancia has sold since 2015, the car’s market reduced to just Italy in 2017. According to Wikipedia, the Ypsilon is still the second-most-popular car on sale in that country. It’s thought the coming version will be a sibling of the electric Fiat 500.
After that, a sedan is due in 2026, and two years later, the production version of the reborn Delta. At the moment, these remain Euro-only prospects. The automaker plans to grow an online retail operation to go with sales in initial markets of Italy, France, Germany, and the UK. If all goes perfectly over the next five years, who knows how far afield a Delta EV could end up.