While Delta Integrale prices have long since launched into the stratosphere, it is still possible to get a sporty version of Lancia‘s boxy 80s hatchback without parting with a significant stack of cash. What you see here is the HF Turbo, a car that predates the famed Integrale by a couple of years, yet it’s the Lancia hot hatch the car world seems to have largely forgotten.
Launched at the same time as the bonkers and highly bespoke mid-engined S4, the HF Turbo was much more down to earth. It had a 1.6-litre twin Webber carburetted inline-four with a Garrett T3 turbo pushing the power to a respectable for the era 130bhp. Unlike in the later HF 4WD and the Integrale models, all of that was sent through the front wheels.
Cracking 0-62mph in around eight seconds, the HF Turbo was properly quick in its day. Don’t forget, this was before VW brought out the 16-valve version of its MkII Golf GTI. The 1.6-litre Peugeot 205 GTI was comfortably outgunned too.
To keep the HF Turbo appealing throughout its life, Lancia kept it updated with changes like a switch to fuel injection and styling tweaks to bring the car closer to the Integrale. Sadly it never received the quad headlamps, but later versions like this 1991 version on pepper pot wheels still look great.
These cars are extremely rare in the UK. According to How Many Left, only 33 are currently registered for road use here. Chances to own one don’t come up so often, particularly an example as mechanically sorted as this.
The most recent owner spend £5800 on a comprehensive overhaul at the hands of Auto Integrale. The Berkshire-based Lancia specialist welded various compromised bits of the shell, fitted a new rear suspension beam, serviced it and changed the cambelt.
The paintwork is said to be in “generally good condition,” with a few visible patches of bubbling. The wheels could probably do with a refurb, and the interior wants a little work too with some significant rips on the driver’s seat. But hey, you do get the original tape deck, and by the looks of it, some free cassettes!
You could buy these cars for buttons not so long ago, but you’ll pay a lot more now. That said, this one should be a damn sight less than the average Integrale. At the time of writing the auction on Car and Classic was at £6100 with one day to go and the reserve yet to be met.