The Lancia Stratos Stradale is quite easily one of the most famous cars of the last century. The first Lancia Stratos HF prototype was shown at the 1971 Turin Motor Show with the design being clearly based on the captivating Stratos Zero concept car from the previous year’s show, a car which is still considered by many to be one of the top ten concept cars of all time.

It’s exceedingly difficult to know how many of the Lancia Stratos Stradale cars were actually made, Italian bookkeeping throughout the tumultuous 1970’s was about as good as you might expect, although it is widely believed that fewer than 500 were produced. A fairly significant number of these were crashed by their owners due to the exceedingly delicate and fine tuned skills required to drive them at speed, especially around corners.

The rally version of the Stratos was astonishingly successful, it won the tightly contested World Rally Championships in 1974, 1975 and 1976 after which it was withdrawn due to changes in the rulebooks. The cars very rarely come up for sale and they appreciate in value quite noticeably everytime they do, this particular Stratos Stradale is due to hit the auction block at the RM Auction in Monaco on the 12th of May 2012, that’s tomorrow at the time of writing.

If you’d like to check out the auction listing or bid on the car, hit the link here and prepare your chequebook for a €250,000 -€300,000 sized hole.

The images used here are all 1600px wide and will make marvellous desktop wallpapers.


Photo Credits: Constantin Fischer ©2012 Courtesy of RM Auctions

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Ben Branch has had his work featured on CNN, Popular Mechanics, the official Smithsonian Magazine, Road & Track Magazine, the official Pinterest blog, the official eBay Motors blog, BuzzFeed, and many more.

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