May I endorse and add a little to Peter Mann’s letter supporting the Lancia Beta MonteCarlo (April 78)?
Warned by your excellent Road Report on this car I have always treated the brakes with great respect in wet weather and have had a couple oh heart .stoppingmoments when It was new. I have now Completed 5,000 miles and it would appear that air has entered the hydraulic system somehow as the pedal is slightly “spongy” but the front wheels are far less prone to locking in the wet. I do not for a moment suggest the introduction of air into the brake line as a cure but I do think the remedy may lie in using harder brake pads on the front wheels which I hope to obtain betore too long.
Apart from the brakes my main objections to the car were excessive noise and the close proximity of brake and accelerator pedals. Happily both can be vastly improved. With a bit of dismantling It is possible to lay bare the engine bulkhead and to clothe it with modern soundproofing materials which make a world of difference. The accelerator pedal is, in fact, a dummy, operating a slave pedal beneath it and it is a simple operation to remove the former, straighten It in a vice which in etlect moves it one inch to the right and replace it with a small connection to the link connecting it to the dummy pedal below.
For good measure I have fined a classic woodrim wheel which all Italian exotica should have anyway and I can actually read the speedometer and sit at a comfortable distance from the pedals too.
So, as the advertisement says, I have a car that is very fast, very beautiful and it’s as quiet as any sports car I have driven recently. My third Lancia, starting with the remarkable Fulvia, following with the 1600 Beta Coupe and by far the best. I wouldn’t part with it.
Dedham J. A. LINDSAY