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1959 Lancia Appia Berlina for $5,500!


We haven’t featured a Lancia here for a while. That doesn’t mean we haven’t found any, it’s just that the good ones seemed to priced in the stratosphere. Most collectors are hunting for the Aurelias or Flaminias to take on high dollar road rallies. While we would like to do that as much as the next guy, the cost can be prohibiting. Well, Robert J just sent in a link to a Lancia that most people could actually afford to buy and run! It may not be as good looking as its siblings, but the high quality and unique engineering are both still there. Find this 1959 Lancia Appia here on craigslist out of San Francisco for only $5,500! Thanks for the tip Robert!


It’s a little rough around the edges and is going to need a lot of work to be road worthy again, but the seller claims that it was properly stored away many years ago. The interior is worn from use, but everything appears to be there. While we would love to have one of the beautiful design house bodied cars, these are still handsome in their own way. Lancia was known for their build quality and they didn’t skimp even on these mass produced cars. They even used aluminum for the doors and hood to save weight. Talking about doors… Look ma, no pillar!


The real engineering gem can be found under the hood though. While its big brothers used V6s, the Berlina still got a little V4. It was light and efficient and with a column shift four-speed was a delight to drive. Being a Series II means that this car benefits from more horsepower and increased interior room. 43 horsepower still isn’t much, but this was a well-built compact that you are unlikely to see very often over here. It doesn’t have the passion of the high-powered Italians, but it does possess a charm all its own and we want it!


While doing a little research on these, we stumbled across a Road & Track road test here that was published in 1959. They didn’t expect much from the little Lancia, but ending up walking away impressed with the virtues that made these cars so great. Unfortunately, the American people didn’t embrace those same qualities so we didn’t see many of them come to our shores. We pursued power over quality and size over efficiency. Lancia may have been ahead of its time, but we still don’t see the same standards even in today’s market. So, if you want to experience what a real Lancia was like, but can’t afford the big boys, this Berlina may be for you!


  1. jim s

    what a nice car. do not think that i have ever seen one in person. i am surprised that it is not already sold! great find

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    • Jesse Mortensen Jesse Staff

      It has only been on craigslist for 6 hours at this point, but I bet it will go quick. If anyone here picks it up, please let us know!

      Like 0
  2. jim s

    what are the two cars in the background of the first photo? and is the motor in this car a V4 with a single head?

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    • MikeH

      The car on the right looks like a Renault 4CV, but the bumper is unfamiliar. I can’t see enough of the blue car to even take a guess.

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  3. paul

    I did a cosmetic resto on an Appia years ago for a guy who had a similar car to this a couple of Talbot Lago’s & a Hudson, this car was amazing drove like a full size car very smooth, lot’s of interior space & very nice very hi quality leather seats, painted it in a light sand color non metallic it was a very sweet car.

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  4. Horse Radish

    I think I know whose car this is.
    If that’s the case, he’s a very honest seller.

    Always wanted to try get into Lancias and this would be a great opportunity…..

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  5. DT

    Ive seen this car before,that was a long time ago,it was very clean last time I saw it. its still not bad ,what a nice restoration it could be. last time I saw it was in the 1980’s.I had a 1959 Lancia Appia Vignale convertible’ at the time ,we were at the same Lancia show. The motor on these Appias is trully beautiful,and would be amazing polished up. My Vignale looked like a small Maserati crossed with an Alfa Romeo,It was a carrozzeria custom body
    all hand made,you could see all the workmanship,It had less than 20,000 miles,My car made this car look very very common

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  6. DT

    I have a Flavia motor I would like to dispose of,If there are any Lancia people out there interested,bumpers too.Im close to finding out what Italian scrap steel is going for

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  7. RickyM

    Never seen one of these before – very cute!

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  8. Mark Mitchell Member

    This is my car, and yes, I am the “honest seller”… Thanks for featuring it on Barnfinds! I love this little gem, but have my hands full with other recently acquired projects: ’65 Sunbeam Venezia Touring Superleggera & ’60 Renault 4CV Jolly (in the garage pic) and a ’63 Falcon Sprint and a ’73 Moto Guzzi V7 Sport. These all need some degree of work and attention, and I have no hope of getting to the Appia anytime soon. I’m sure that I will kick myself for selling it after seeing it finished, but I need to hand over the reins to another enthusiast. There has been a considerable amount of interest in the Appia, but it is still available for the moment. I don’t think it will last until the end of the weekend, so let me know if you have interest-

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    • Jesse Mortensen Jesse Staff

      Thanks for commenting Mark. I’m sorely tempted to sell all my projects and rescue this little guy! Please keep us updated.

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  9. Dolphin Member

    Lancias were among the most innovative cars, with many advanced features and the best construction materials and workmanship.

    I think an Appia this original this would sell very quickly in Europe for significantly more than the asking price here. This is one of the best buys in a vintage European car that I have seen in a long while.

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  10. Jim-Bob

    It’s not really my taste, but it seems like an awfully good buy for a car that would see you welcomed into some fairly interesting European car shows. If memory serves, these have a little engineering detail problem in that there is no seal between the front and rear doors, so rain and the elements like to find their way inside. Happily though, it appears it didn’t have a wood and leather interior, so interior restoration costs should be somewhat reasonable if everything is there.

    Once again though this appears to be another interesting classic which would be outclassed by my minimal acceptable performance benchmark-a 3 cylinder Geo Metro XFI (15 seconds 0-60). While the Geo was about 1623lbs with 49 SAE net HP, this has 43 gross hp (measured without accessories), so the reality is that it probably puts about 30-35 hp to the crank by modern standards. I imagine it has acceleration qualities somewhere between a Trabant 601 (about 20 seconds 0-60) and a Mercedes W123 240D (27 seconds 0-60), so trying to use it in modern traffic would be “entertaining” to say the least. Then again, it is not likely that this car will ever see much more than shows and the occasional trip to the local Mc Donalds ever again, so it’s probably fine.

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  11. Mark Mitchell Member

    The car is still available at the moment, although I have received numerous emails from all across the US and Europe. Everybody thinks its a great price, but no money has been exchanged yet.

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    • Steven Ligac

      Hi Jesse. I have a question and I see that you are staff, so I’ll ask you about it. Whenever I ‘Like’ a post the system shoots me straight to the BF page used to become a member.
      Am I to deduce that I must become a member to vote? Seems odd if it is, as I can post with no trouble.

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  12. Steven Ligac

    ^^^ Sorry Guys, this was intended to be posted as a reply to Jesse’s post above. I didn’t get to it in time to delete it… All apologies.
    I sure could use some direction though!

    Like 0

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