The Issigonis concept of front wheels driven by a transverse engine has been seen in push-rod-o.h.v. and single-overhead-camshaft guise; and in side-valve, T-head and two-stroke versions if the historians are to be humoured. Now we have it in twin o.h.c. form, for that is the way it is done in the new Lancia Beta. The Beta’s release was to have included a test-drive in Scotland but this was mysteriously postponed (until the fallen-by-the-wayside IPC weeklies got back into circulation, Mr. Breach?), nor was the Beta at Earls Court. But we know from experience that Lancia of Turin has made very few poor cars and that its Fulvias and Flavias have been excellent, the sort of cars which are as nice to drive slowly as fast, and vice versa. So the Beta is presumably worth waiting for. It is to come in 1.4, 1.6 and 1.8-litre forms, with claimed maxima of 102, 105 and 109 m.p.h. respectively, and the specification embraces an 8 ft. 4 in. wheelbase, five-speed gearbox, disc brakes and LX editions of the two larger-engined models. The name Beta was used for the first commercially-successful Lancia, of which the blurb says its “single block four-cylinder motor constituted an absolute novelty of major technological importance in 1909.” Leaving aside such histrionics, we look forward to trying the Beta, in Scotland or anywhere else, when Lancia decide that the time is right for Motor Sport to do so. Interesting that the camshafts are belt-driven, that the cams operate directly on the valve stems, with shim tappet-adjustment, and that the engines all have an 8.9 to 1 c.r. and run up to 6,400 r.p.m. — W. B.