Lancia returns to rallying with the Ypsilon HF | CAR Magazine

Lancia returns to rallying with the Ypsilon HF

Published: 28 May 2024 Updated: 28 May 2024

Rally4-spec Lancia Ypsilon HF announced
209bhp, sequential ‘box, limited-slip diff
Aimed primarily at young drivers

Lancia is set to return to the world’s rally stages with this, the Ypsilon Rally4 HF. It’s the first factory-built Lancia rally car in more than 30 years and revives the brand’s iconic Martini livery – at least in these images.

Lancia is one of the most legendary names in rallying history and it remains the most successful, winning 15 manufacturers’ titles in the World Rally Championship. That’s despite the Italian marque not fielding a factory team in more than 30 years.

Lancia Ypsilon Rally4 HF

Sadly, the Ypsilon Rally4 HF doesn’t mark a return to front-line WRC competition. Instead, it’s aimed at young, up and coming drivers competing in national and regional series, including the European Rally Championship.

Unlike the road-going Ypilson HF, the Rally4 HF is powered by a heavily tuned 1.2-litre, three-cylinder turbocharged engine producing 209bhp. The power is sent to the front wheels via a five-speed sequential gearbox and a mechanical limited-slip differential.

Lancia Ypsilon Rally4 HF

It’s a proven mechanical package that the Ypsilon shares with the Rally4-spec Peugeot 208 and Vauxhall/Opel Corsa – all three cars are built on the Stellantis CMP platform – so any competitors taking a punt on the Lancia will be pretty confident in its reliability. It’s an incredibly successful package, as well, the Peugeot in particular racking up countless class wins and championships.

Rally 4 is the second tier on the FIA’s current rally specification ‘pyramid’, which is based on the cars’ power-to-weight ratio. The Rally1 cars competing in the WRC are at the top with a ratio of 3.1 kilos-per-horsepower; Rally4 cars have 5.1 kg/hp.

Lancia Ypsilon Rally4 HF

Lancia has yet to set out a timeframe for when the Ypsilon Rally4 HF will reach stages but expect to see it at some point in 2025 when the road car arrives. Prices haven’t been divulged either but, for reference, a Peugeot 208 Rally4 carries a base price of €73000 (£62000) plus local taxes.

By Graham King

Senior Staff Writer for Parkers. Car obsessive, magazine and brochure collector, trivia mine.