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|aka|| Lancia Beta Montecarlo|
|Body Style|| 2-door RMR layout convertible|
2-door RMR layout coupé
|Length||3810 mm (150 in)-3965 mm (156.1 in)|
|Width||1690 mm (66.5 in)-1696 mm (66.8 in)|
|Height||1190 mm (46.9 in)|
|Wheelbase||2300 mm (90.6 in)|
|Weight||970 kg (2138 lb)-1075 kg (2370 lb)|
|Transmission||transmission + drive|
|Engine|| 2.0 litre (1995 cc) straight-4|
1.7 litre (1756 cc) straight-4 (Scorpion)
|Power|| N/A hp @ N/A rpm|
N/A lb-ft of torque @ N/A rpm
Cars from the first series, which were produced from 1975 to 1978, were known as Lancia Beta Montecarlos and those from the second series, produced from 1979 to 1982, simply as Lancia Montecarlos. In both cases Montecarlo was spelled as one word, unlike Monte Carlo in the Principality of Monaco. Both series were offered in Coupé and Spider versions, the latter featuring a unique roll-back manually operated targa style convertible top. A low-power version of the Spider, known as the Lancia Scorpion, was sold in the United States during 1976 and 1977.
Based on the prototype Abarth 030, the Montecarlo was known as the X1/8 (later the X1/20) while in development, and was intended to be a Fiat-branded 'big brother' to the Fiat X1/9. It had a similar mid-engined layout, with a larger engine and roomier interior. The car was passed to Lancia, and was constructed by Pininfarina, the original design company, in Turin, Italy.
Total production amounted to 3,835 first series Beta Montecarlos, 1,940 second series Montecarlos and 1,801 US market Scorpions.
See Wikicars' comprehensive Lancia Montecarlo Review.
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The Standard warranty of the time was 2 yrs or 24,000 miles whichever came first. There was limited corrosion protection packages with galvanized bodies, however the design of the vehicle was prone to crevices where water could easily become trapped in areas that collected water and condensation. Many of these Lancias no longer exist today due to their potential to rust out. Many Lancias and Fiat counterparts where literally rusting from the factory, and shipped with pre-existent structural compromise. This problem was corrected later in production during the 1980's with more attention the rust prone areas.
Reliability is actually rather high for a mid level exotic of this era. These Lancias are however heavily dependent on a routine preventative maintenance program as recommended form the factory. Both the USA and European versions of the vehicle are designed in tune with the Fiat 124 twin cam engine and therefore are recommended a 30,000 mile timing belt, water pump and tensioner and bearing replacement as standard tune up procedure. Failure to comply with this interval results in bent valves, scored pistons and leaking water pumps which will indeed create costly repairs.
Lancia and Fiat alike share a mystique of unreliability in the American market as a result of poor dealer networks, improperly informed owners and a lack of understanding for the needs of these cars. If the timing belt, water pump, valves adjustments and water pump integrity is monitored and maintained, the twin cam Lancia motor proves as reliable as any semi-modern twin cam motor, and even a vehicle such as the Montecarlo / Scorpion of the vintage years should be capable of thousands of miles on a motor without the need for overhaul before the 100,000 miles mark. This of course varies with condition and usage. Consult a professional mechanic for inspection and service as these Lancias are no longer supported by the Lancia or Fiat dealer networks in Europe or in the United States.
Safety items consisted of inertia activated safety belts with over the shoulder design. Safety glass was standard on the windshield but not the driver / passenger window glass. Collapsible steering columns were standard as were four wheel disc brakes and rear brake proportion valve. Rack and pinion steering with independent suspension created better handling characteristics. There were no side impact reinforcements or door beams, crumple zones were in the infancy stages for the marque's engineering facility at Pininfarina during the 1970's. The Montecarlo / Scorpion vehicles are not considered to be safe in serious impacts but complied with regulations specified by the countries they were sold in.
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