In the late 1970's the problem facing any manufacturer that wanted to continue taking part in the World Rally Championship during the next decade was that the rules were being changed. Not only that but nobody knew until it was almost too late what form those new rules would take. This book takes the reader through the reasons for the new rules and the solutions that all potential contenders would have to consider if they wanted to win rallies at World Championship level. In particular, the subject of the book, Lancia's Rally, was the car that was developed quickly to deal with the then-dominant Audi Quattro. The reasons it succeeded are featured here along with an in-depth, behind closed-doors, look at the development of the car with the close help and cooperation of it's designer and chief engineer Ing. Sergio Limone. Here you can read how he decided the basic configuration of the car, what the rules would allow and how the project unfolded in total secret at Fiat's various test tracks and centers in and around Turin overlaid with rumor and counter-rumor as the world's motoring press tried to make sense of what little knowledge they could glean of the project's progress. In addition, Ing. Limone's own photographs, from areas never allowed access to the public, tell their own story.
Auto Italia, June 2008
This is a good book! It's not one of your under-researched self-indulgent writer lightweights. Peter Collins has obviously taken a lot of time and effort to produce what must surely be regarded as the most authoritative record of the fabulous Lancia 037. Mind you, he was asked to write it by Sergio Limone, who was the main man behind the 037 project. With this kind of support, it's not surprising that there are plenty of archive pictures. The extensive collection of never-been-seen shots of the car during its development from the production Montecarlo shell are fascinating. There's also an insight into the proposed 037 'Evo 3', a four-wheel drive rallycross car and an 037 with twin rear wheels. Fascinating stuff. Highly recommended.
Speedscene, October 2008
The magazine of the Hillclimb and Sprint association
The fabulous Group B rally cars of the 1980s were a relatively short-lived breed and so opportunities to see them were rare. In later life, though, some made sporadic appearances in hillclimbing in Britain to enliven the large capacity sports libre classes. One of the most charismatic was long-time Ferrari enthusiast Christian Mineeff's flame-spitting, Martini-liveried Lancia 037 which few who saw it in action will forget. And even in period, John Gray had considerable success with his unique, right-hand-drive Andy Dawson-prepared example on the Scottish hills. Both these cars feature in Peter Collins' book, which traces the history of one of the main challengers to the all-conquering Audi Quattro and which took the World Championship for Makes in 1983. Including some of designer and chief engineer Sergio Limone's initial concept sketches, the development of the car, with Lancia Montecarlo central cockpit shell and tubular sub-frames front and rear, is covered in detail before going on to detail the car's competition career.
Octane, June 2008
The author was asked to write this book by the car's chief designer Sergio Limone, which helps explain the large number of development pictures that Peter Collins has laid his hands on. Of course the rally history of this Group B supercar is fully described and well illustrated too, but it's the coverage of the early, behind-the-scenes story that makes Collins' book definitive. Quotes from drivers such as Walter Rohrl, Miki Biaison and Antonella Mandelli show he's done his research.
Review from Classic & Sports Car, July 2008
Fleet Car, October 2008
Records the development and rally history of a World Champion that was the awesome Group B Lancia Rally Car. In collaboration with the 037's designer and chief engineer Ing. Sergio Limone, Collins brilliantly takes the reader from the initial concept through its development to the full history of its rallying lifetime. This 224-page hardback features 250 stunning and rare action photos. Chassis 301 built in 1983 took part in the Circuit of Ireland in the hands of Pentti Airikkala navigated by our own Ronan Morgan. Irish rally crew Ronnie and Dessie McCarthy owned and competed in one, which they converted to right hand drive.
"... the author's narrative makes a relaxing read - as a friend of the 037's designer and chief engineer, Collins was specifically asked to write this book by the great man himself, so perhaps it is no surprise that the book contains many in-depth insights." – Old Stager
"What adds to the book's appeal is the mass of excellent photographs presented on high-quality glossy paper. The years of Group B were a fascinating period for rallying. This brings it all back to life." – The Automobile
"Between the detailed background on the car’s development, its rally race history, driving impressions, and over 340 rare photographs, this book stands as the definitive treatise on the 037 and a must-have for any fan of Lancia or rally history." – Vintage Racecar
New Zealand Classic Car, July 2008
BOOK OF THE MONTH
Developed by Lancia to replace the astonishing Stratos rally car, the 037 was designed to take on the then dominant Audi Quattro - and it succeeded by winning the 1983 WRC championship for Walter Rörhl and Lancia. With the invaluable assistance of Lancia's then designer and chief engineer, Sergio Limone - who opened his files to the author - Collins is able to unfold the entire story behind Lancia's 037 project. Many of the photographs in the book come from Limone's private collection - many of them never before seen. Along with Limone's valuable contribution, Collins also adds a complete competition history and interviews key personnel, from the drivers to rally team members and engineers. There's even a small Kiwi element - remembering that the Lancia 037s competed, and won, at the 1983 Rally of New Zealand. It would be hard to find a more definitive history of this iconic Italian car.