Lancia buffs have long agonized over the evolution of the marque. Some would identify the 1950s as its heyday in the 1950s, and the 1960s as a period of evolution to a more contemporary or modern lineup, with the Fulvia successful but also the less-so Flavia. The products through the 1970s and 1980s can be considered as a complex response to difficult marketplace, but also to incorporation of new engineering and managment approaches from Fiat.
It can be useful to see these difficulties in other companies as well - for comparison and to expand our understanding of what happened. Recommended is a three part series on the evolution of Jaguar, on the site Driven To Write. Insightful and cogent, analysis focuses on Jaguar evolution from about 1980 through 2010, a more recent time than Lancia's, but equally difficult. It was a struggle with contemporary styling and product alignment while trying to work out how to update their own traditions, issues quite similar to Lancia's. See the last part of the three part series (most recent), but the others are on their site:
Recently there was a Flaminia Berlina up for sale, and a number of friends were discussing how lovely it was, and how interested all of us were in it. That, plus some interest in the Flavia 2000 coupe, has heightened attention to the issue of conservative design, and build quality.
Recently came across a related couple of interesting articles about Mercedes 2 seaters, with in-depth study of the design for the 230/250/280SL of the 1960s and the 350SL, of the 1970-80s. The writing is very good and can inform the thoughtful Lancista. Well worth reading and sharing: