Whoever doubts the brand awareness and the right to exist of Lancia as an independent car manufacturer is bound to run into some heavy wind. And not just any storm in a teacup.
The internet platform SaveLancia.it presents the movie ‘Lancia Year Zero. The video is an indictment against Lancia’s parent company FCA’s CEO Sergio Marchionne’s decision to slowly fade out the 110 year old brand. The Lancisti that founded SaveLancia in 2014 hope to achieve a change of mind within the management of FCA: ‘Simply liquidating Lancia is a mortal sin. It implies the demise of a brand heritage that knows no equal other than the myth of Enzo Ferrari’, they write on their website.
‘Lancia? Besides the successful little premium model Ypsilon nothing is sure. It is better to concentrate on brands like Alfa Romeo and Maserati, who are known around the world and not just locally in Italy and parts of Europe like Lancia.’ It’s June 2014 and with this simple remark Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne signs the death sentence for Lancia. As soon as the current Ypsilon no longer meets the desired sales, the brand ceases to exist. No more investments in new models will be made. That is the simple but harsh message. Lancia enthousiasts are in shock, of which the website and Facebook page SaveLancia are clear signs. Lancisti 2.0, as they call themselves, from Italy and far beyond, who meet on the internet. ‘Corporate mistakes and crises have mortgaged the future of the brand’, the founders write in a written interview with CineCars, ‘but besides that thousands of fans worldwide share the love for a brand that historically had the courage to innovate and look for new horizons. We can’t and will not stay silent about this forced demise and will do everything we can to communicate this message to the FCA management.’
‘Lancia Year Zero’ is not just a chronological enumeration of every model in the 110 year long history of the brand, ensures SaveLancia in their press release. It is the story of the genius Vincenzo Lancia and of the city of Turin. But most of all it is a complaint against the foolishness of those that just couldn’t stop bargaining away a unique heritage of knowledge and beauty. Lancia, that used to bring mythical and innovative cars like the Aurelia, the Stratos and the Delta Integrale, has been reduced to an affiliate of the Chrysler company selling Chryslers with Lancia badges. The last Lancia Thema being nothing but a re-badged Chrysler 300M. For many proof that Marchionne is deliberately killing off the brand. In the mean time tens of thousands of people have organised in the SaveLancia project. Something that hasn’t passed unnoticed in Turin and Detroit. ‘From insiders we heard that the FCA management knows about our battle to keep the brand alive. We even sent them a nice envelope with 5000 signatures of Lancia fans. Although we haven’t received an official reaction, it appears that within the FCA group awareness about the eminent loss of the incredible Lancia heritage is on the rise.’
Lancia = Italy, as the press release clearly states, we can’t just silently sit back and watch the 110 year old heritage being wiped out with just one simple stroke. From thursday 6th of April 2017 at 21:00 hours ‘Lancia Year Zero’ is online at this Facebook page:
Angelo van Schaik