Lancia returns to rallying with its first new hot hatchback in decades, and it looks awesome

Although this is what the company has become best known for, it has been decades since Lancia latest product a real hot hatch – not really surprising given that it’s I’ve only sold one car in the last decade. anyway. This will finally change next year with the road-going Ypsilon HF, a high-performance, fully electric version of the Lancia’s brilliant new sedanand the HF spawns a racing version that will compete in the Rally4 class.

Lancia hasn’t announced many details or photos about the Ypsilon HF yet, as it won’t go on sale until May 2025, but from what we can see, it looks great. The front-wheel drive Ypsilon HF will develop 240 horsepower, almost 100 more than the standard car, enough to reach 100 km/h in 5.8 seconds. Additional performance upgrades will include lowered suspension and larger, wider wheels; expect further adjustments to the steering, brakes and other components.

Here is the road Ypsilon HF
Photo: Lancia

The HF really looks the part too, with stunning three-spoke wheels, wider fender flares, larger air intakes and a bunch of black trim. Inside, we find bright blue seats with red perforations and a diagonal pattern, as well as numerous HF emblems and badges.

It’s great to see the HF brand making a comeback, especially since the elephant logo is one of the cutest and biggest in automotive history. It first appeared in 1960, all thanks to a club of passionate owners. Lancia states:

Returning to the Lancia Ypsilon HF, the HF logo is the historic signature of high-performance Lancia models, originally introduced at the 1960 Geneva Motor Show, when a group of passionate Lancia car owners founded the “Lancia Hi-Fi” (“High Fidelity”), an exclusive meeting point for the brand’s most loyal customers and in particular for those who have purchased at least six new Lancia cars. The HF logo then became a distinctive mark of the HF Squadra Corse Lancia, founded in 1963 by Cesare Fiorio with passionate drivers and owners of Lancia cars, and was used as a “signature” for many of the brand’s victories.

The historic logo was composed of HF in white capital letters on a black background, four running red elephants underlined by the words “SQUADRA CORSE” in white on red. The little elephant was chosen as a lucky charm, drawing on the legend that once unleashed, these creatures are unstoppable, making them a symbol of performance and driving pleasure. Unveiled in March in its revisited version, the new HF logo reinterprets its historic counterpart with a contemporary touch: all the constituent elements of the brand symbolize the Lancia tradition and are now simplified in terms of lines and shapes in a new balance that expresses the innovation, the bonus. , and the Italian spirit, with a touch of eclecticism in full respect of the brand’s characteristic geometries.

As for the rally version of the Ypsilon HF, it shares its platform and engine with the Opel Corsa and Peugeot 208 rally cars. Rally4 is the entry-level class in rally racing, with homologated two-wheel drive cars that have a power-to-weight ratio of 5.1 kg per horsepower. The Rally4 Ypsilon HF is equipped with a 1.2-liter turbocharged three-cylinder engine, which in the Opel produces 212 hp and 214 lb-ft of torque, mated to a 5-speed sequential gearbox and a mechanical differential limited slip.

Rear 3/4 view of a Lancia Ypsilon HF Rally4

Photo: Lancia

Lancia presented the Ypsilon HF Rally4 in its iconic Martini livery, and the rally car gets a funky set of wheels, large hood vents and a roof opening. Interestingly, the bumper design and some other styling details don’t exactly match the road car, but that could change by the time the car enters competition. Lancia claims that the Ypsilon HF Rally4 is “the ideal solution for all rally enthusiasts, but is also a serious candidate for drivers aspiring to victory in the R4 category and in two-wheel drive championships.”

I wouldn’t be surprised to see Lancia offer versions of the Ypsilon to compete in some of the higher classes of rallying, but the company could do so with other cars as well: over the next few years, Lancia will unveil a flagship crossover Gamma. as well as a new Delta, both of which will be equipped with electric powertrains and will surely receive HF variants. The idea of ​​a car named Lancia Delta competing in rallies makes my heart race.

Front bumper of a Lancia Ypsilon HF

Photo: Lancia

Interior of a Lancia Ypsilon HF

Photo: Lancia

Front seats of a Lancia Ypsilon HF

Photo: Lancia

Front view of a Lancia Ypsilon HF Rally4

Photo: Lancia

Front 3/4 view of a Lancia Ypsilon HF Rally4

Photo: Lancia