In 2019, I was asked to come to Castlemaine and give a talk for the 100 year anniversary of the Lancia Kappa. Not knowing so much about the Kappa, the occasion was an opportunity to dig into the history of the early Lancias, the pre-Lambda cars, and see what was to be learned from them.
The position that emerged was somewhat different than that previously understood: the typical understanding was that the early cars were well made, even interesting in their own right, but not of the experimental or radical nature of the later Lancias, from the Lambda one.
The approach taken was different, in that the whole of the Lancia undertaking, from 1907 to 1922 was seen as a single period of exploration and invention, of ideas tried and some abandoned; but that once seen all together, the work of that time set up and gave rise to the inventions and innovations of the Lambda. Seen another way, the breakthroughs of the Lambda, and its sister, the Trikappa, did not come from nowhere - and that to understand them, one had to assess the origins of such independent and different thinking. And that those origins were in the early years of the company, if one were to look closely for them.
A written version of the talk can be found as Emerging Traditions, here: Articles
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