PCH, Vintage Racing Hell Edition: 1964 Lotus Elan or 1960 Lancia Flaminia?

Was it fair to pit a stock Mercury Lynx against a Chevette diesel-powered RX-7 in yesterday's Diesel Dilemma Edition Choose Your Eternity poll? Probably not, as the diesel Mazda pounded the daylights out of the badge-engineered Escort. Today we're going to move away from cars that you might consider using as everyday transportation and head into the realm of cars that stick their voracious snouts into your wallet every time they detect the proximity of a race track. That's right, it's Vintage Racing Hell today! Naturally, we'll need to go with PCH Superpowers Britain and Italy for this one, and the decade of the 1960s seems about right to sucker you into believing that these cars aren't so old that parts obtainment will be impossible. Hey, what's 40 or 50 years, right?


You want to get into some serious GT Touring action at the next vintage racing event in your area? Good thinking! Of course, you'll need to roll up in some Italian steel, and said steel needs to be incredibly rare if you're going to make the right impression. Say, this 1960 Lancia Flaminia, which is "in an advanced phase of restoration" (what are you going to believe, the photograph of a total beat-to-shit basket case diamond in the rough or the seller's description?) and which once "belonged to an elderly man." Powered by a 2.5 liter V6 (before the V6 design was fashionable), the Lancia Flaminia was stylish, fast, and built in dauntingly small numbers. It's just £12,500 (plus shipping costs from the UK), and you get "complete front end and rear end extra" (whatever that means). Don't be intimidated by the fact that you'll need to hire machinists and fabricators to make the smallest missing component from scratch for this project, because it will all be worth it when you're out there on the track with that V6 roaring!

You'd have fun with a big Italian machine, all right, but how would you cope with the envy you'd have for the guys in the high-strung little British cars? We've got the solution! Just get on the horn and call "Vladimir," a man so trustworthy his name must be surrounded by a bodyguard of quote marks, and tell him you'll pay whatever it takes to buy this 1964 Lotus Elan (go here if the ad disappears). Check out that twin-cam Cosworth-ized Lotus-Ford engine! You know it's going to be the best-sounding thing you've ever heard! Oh, and don't fret about the ominous statement "while waiting for his destiny to improve,
the owner has become too old to finish this profect," because you'll manage to get this project done before you, too, wake up one morning and realize you've spent 45 years and the thing still isn't done. It's got a limited-slip differential, some expensive-sounding suspension bits, and some (mercifully unspecified) work remaining to do before you can go out and blow away some Ferraris. Come on, how hard could it be? Slam-dunk project, for sure!

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