1973 Lancia Fulvia 1,3 S Coupe
|Ownership log by Dan and Justine Mooney
Earlier today I received and installed a rather smart one piece Coco Mat for the Fulvia, and I also swapped out the Monte Carlo steering wheel for a beautiful vintage Formel wood rim wheel. I think the wood rim matches the dash rather nicely!
I was delighted to hear from Adan Figueroa of LA Lancia earlier today regarding the history of our Lancia Fulvia. At my request Adan had been in touch with the previous owner, a retired Italian Air Force Colonel, who was kind enough to provide us with a full and fascinating ownership history. He also sent us some beautiful photographs of him enjoying the car on location in Rome, Italy.
When previous owners make the time and effort to tell the story of a car they once cherished to the new keeper, the classic car hobby really can be a lot of fun. As people fortunate enough to own these wonderful old cars, we should always try to pass on as much history as we possibly can to subsequent owners. It is truly wonderful to hear how much enjoyment a car has provided over the years.
1973 Lancia Fulvia 818 630 1.3S
- The first owner (born 1940) was a regional politician for “Christian Democratic Party”. He owned the car from new until 2004.
- The second owner was a mechanical engineer (born 1979), working at a shipyard in Taranto (southern Italy). He bought the Fulvia in 2004. The engineer told me he used to drive the Fulvia almost daily to reach the university during the last year before graduation. Also he took care of car's maintenance with great attention.
- I am the third owner (born 1954) and I bought the Fulvia from the engineer in 2011.
At that time I bought the Fulvia the engineer had in his garage also two Fulvia Sport Zagatos, one 1.3 and one 1.6, and a Lancia Delta Integrale, and therefore he decided to sell the Fulvia to me just to reduce the size of the garage. I kept the car for six years, always preserved in a garage (enclosed picture). I drove the car for less than 2000 km, mainly to attend few gatherings for vintage cars. I enclose a few pictures taken during the “Non solo ali” (not only wing) event in Rome (2013), reserved to military personnel.
As matter of fact I am a retired Italian Air Force Colonel and I was on duty as jet pilot. In 1984 I attended a three month course at the Defense Language Institute at Lackland A.F.B. (Texas). Afterward I was based for three years (1985-1988) at Sheppard A.F.B. (Texas) as a pilot instructor for the European NATO Joint Jet Pilot Training Program.
The Fulvia periodical and occasional maintenance during the six years I owned the car was provided by Enzo Feliciani (born 1933), a well know Lancia “historical” mechanic in Rome, who established his activity in 1946.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gIDhfN-Meyc (with English sub titles).
The decision to sell the Fulvia (to you) was due to a “very crowded” garage! At the moment the following cars are sitting in the garage:
Lancia Beta HPE
Lancia Beta Coupè
Alfa Romeo Alfetta GT
Alfa Romeo 75 Twin Spark
Autobianchi A112 Abarth 70HP
Autobianchi A112 Elite
Cruising in the Fulvia on a beautiful fall day in Austin yesterday.
I put about 75 miles on the Fulvia yesterday and I am starting to get a feel for the little car. Once on the move, the car keeps up with modern traffic effortlessly. The tiny engine displacement makes for an involving and fun driving experience. I have identified a couple of minor issues that will require attention before I can get the car inspected and registered, but all in all the first few days of ownership have been loads of fun!
|Doors close with a reassuring clunk, which
to the high build quality
|Impressive panel gaps
|License plate lamps were inoperative, just
few minutes to fix
|Both rear lamps now working
|Thanks to the Cover Company in England for
another great custom car cover
I am delighted to report that the little red Fulvia arrived yesterday afternoon, just in time for Justine's birthday. Many thanks to Adan Figueroa who did a fantastic job preparing the car prior to shipping it from LA Lancia. Within minutes of the car being unloaded I was blasting around the back roads, feeling as if I had been transported back to Italy in the late sixties or early seventies. As if to reinforce the Italian vibe, I came across my friend driving his 1967 Lamborghini Miura in the opposite direction, on his way to CJ to drop off the Miura for service. It felt like a scene from the Italian Job.
My first impression driving the car was that it drives like a new car, literally. This is the first Fulvia I have driven and I was immediately impressed by the build quality and the smoothness of the drive train. At almost 6'03" I was concerned that I wouldn't fit in the diminutive little coupe, but I was surprised at how roomy it was inside the cabin.
The little red Fulvia has made a great first impression, and Justine has declared it her best birthday present ever. As she posed for the first two photographs below, she was telling me of a strong urge to buy Italian hand bags and shoes, as well as Sophia Loren silk scarves and extravagant sunglasses.
Continuing with the Italian vibe, I asked one of my painters to touch in a small scratch on the passenger door and a couple of minor stone chips around the body. When we went to the Spies Hecker computer to find the paint code, we had to chuckle when we saw it was called "Rosso Amore". How romantic...and how Italian...
|Justine has declared the Fulvia the best
|Introducing the Fulvia to one of its new
In late September, the following photos caught my attention on Bring a Trailer, the on-line auction site. I have always thought the Fulvia coupes were pretty little cars, and they happen to be my wife's favorite car ever, so I decided to investigate a little further. I have often said that the person from whom one buys a car is just as important as the car itself. In this case, I learned that the seller was Adan Figueroa, the well respected proprietor of LA Lancia in California. Once I knew that, I was determined that the little red Lancia would move to Austin!
On October 4, 2017, I managed to win the auction and a plan was put in place for Adan Figueroa to take care of a few items for me prior to shipping the car to Texas. It was agreed that we would do a little paintwork on the left rear quarter panel, install a lightweight flywheel and new clutch, a new rear crank seal, some new rear lamp lenses and a new wooden dash. Initially I was going to install a correct S2 steering wheel, but in the end I decided I liked the Fulvia Monte Carlo wheel currently installed better than the faux wood rim version used in the S2 Fulvias.
Our Fulvia had spent its entire life in Italy before being purchased and brought to the United States by Adan Figueroa in April 2017. In Italy it had been part of a collection of Lancias that had been serviced for many years by legendary Lancia mechanic Ezio Feliciani in Rome. Now well into his eighties, Mr. Feliciani is very well known in Lancia circles having specialized in the repair and restoration of the marque for a staggering seven decades!
There is a fascinating video on You Tube featuring Mr. Feliciani. In the video he explains that when a Lancia is entrusted to his care, he treats the car as if it was his own and does whatever repairs it needs, without compromise. He stops short of saying that he isn't interested in the wishes of the owner of the car, but the inference is clear! I think it is incredibly cool that Ezio Feliciani used to take care of our Fulvia.
|Rosso paint is in great shape
|Two tone interior is quite striking
|Car was regularly serviced by legendary
mechanic Ezio Feliciani in Roma
|Repairs completed, the little Lancia is now
for its journey to Austin
|New wood dash installed by Adan, Fulvia
Monte Carlo steering wheel
|A custom, tailored, satin car cover is
being made for
me by my friends at the Cover Company in England
|An appropriate license plate awaits the
Fulvia's arrival in Texas