The Lancia Delta Integrale needs little or no introduction. Evolved from the all-conquering rally Delta 4WD of the mid-80s, the road-going Integrale started off as an 8-valve, moved on to the 16V and then into the stratosphere of the EVO versions.
Besides the obvious insertion of permanent 4WD and the existing 2.0 litre turbo engine, both appearing in the original Delta HF, the Integrale added a revised torque split biased more to the rear wheels, lowered suspension, boxy wheel arches and spoilers to the standard hatchback shape. Nonetheless, it remained a relatively lightweight car and was extremely fast for nowadays, let alone over thirty years ago. The 16V version, as here, benefited from an extra 35bhp, increasing output to 197bhp, and was good for under six seconds in the 0-60 dash. The 4WD system and larger wheels ensured tremendous roadholding and poise, while larger brakes helped it stop as well. It has always been lauded as a great driver’s car, yet it’s still very practical as a four-door hatchback too.
This particular car was originally sold in Bavaria in southern Germany. The registration document for its owner in Höhenkirchen-Siegertsbrunn on the south side of Munich – in the outer city district – is on file, as is the “deregistration” document. (The town’s name is usually shortened to Höhenkirchen-S.Brunn as it’s one of the longest placenames in Germany!) The first owner in Bavaria seems to have had a garage business which is still in existence. It was imported to the UK in 1997 and sold by Graham Walker a specialist dealer (still) in Chester. Since then, it has had five UK owners – the last one for 17 years – and has a current odometer reading of approx 130k km or around 80k miles.
DVLA online records show MoT history back to 2006, when the mileage was 126k km and there are additional MoT certificates on file going right back to 1997 (at 90k km). The current MoT expires in July 2021. There is a Total Car Check search available from October 2020 verifying this and other details.
In addition to the above paperwork, there is a pile of invoices going back to the time of the Delta’s being imported into the UK. These include bills at various Lancia specialists in Wrexham (Paxtons and ItalMania) from then right into the early 2000s, Bradford (Betacar) in the mid-2000s and then the well-known Delta specialists Walkers Garage in Northallerton in the last three years. There are also invoices for tyres and other consumables, plus a manuscript record of servicing in the 2000s. The mileage records indicate it was barely used in the period 2006 to 2018. It will reassure potential purchasers to note that the recent Walkers’ invoices include supplying and fitting a starter motor (Sep 2018), full exhaust (Nov 2019) and supplying camshaft drive belt and auxiliary and balance belts and tensioners (May 2020). The paperwork includes a workshop manual which is also available digitally on CD-R.
This is a well looked after, unrestored example of the fabulous Delta Integrale with an apparently genuine lowish mileage. The bodywork has some age-related marks but it is generally sound and the paintwork is still deep and impressive. The striped cloth and alcantara interior is in good condition, with only a tear on the driver’s side bolster letting the side down. The seat has been imaginatively repaired but could be hidden better if desired. Like all self-respecting Delta 4WDs, the car is LHD.
There are few cars which actually earn the overused title “iconic”, but the Delta Integrale is undoubtedly one of them. It almost single-handedly defines the initial era of rally 4WD and the battles with Audi. The sound of the engine/exhaust is to die for! One for serious drivers, this car remains relatively affordable against the EVO versions, but for how much longer?