New Stratos

You know it’s true love when the millionth time always feels like the first time. It’s hard to explain to those who do not share the love for fine automobiles, but with all cars that have been tested in this magazine, getting acquainted with a new one is hardly routine work. Better still…the more time you spend with it, the more reasons you find that will make you fall in love with it.

Forget politics and rational chit chat: if there has been anything rational about cars like the new Stratos that would be the will to sign off a check and send it to the cheery fellows who build it. It feels like bumping into your high school sweetheart, finding out she’s single and falling in love again with her.

True enthusiasts have always felt that the end of production of the original Lancia Stratos left only a hole to be filled. It was a purpose-built rally car which was a showpiece you could actually get on and drive the wheels off of it. Not perfect by all means, but terribly charming and capable of a unique and thrilling experience. Here at Escape on Wheels we know a thing or two about the charm of the original.

They say that a re-heated meal won’t taste the same, but is that always true? Loving cars almost never involves rational thinking and the new Stratos seems to be here to stay, to fill in that void left by its legendary predecessor. Yes, they’re making a new one, and it looks as promising as ever. The project was first seen as a one off from German father-son duet of Michael and Maximilian Stochek and now the MAT (Manifattura Automobili Torino) has decided to issue a limited edition series of this new-old icon.

Its full carbon fiber bodywork and flamboyant underpinnings will ensure a thrilling drive and perhaps a memorable one. While our first impression with it on a cold and foggy morning on the 17 mile drive of Pebble Beach was very good, in the time we’re waiting to have a go in it we’re hoping to see that the best bits of the past are coming back to visit us. They say that resuming a once strong love story won’t have the same taste…but sometimes, our once great loves can only be re-ignited with twice the power they once had. After all, no one truly forgets the feeling of pure love.


Many thanks to MAT and Issimi

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