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  1. #1
    Master Lancista
    Join Date
    Feb 2012

    A Nordic Fulvia road trip

    Greetings Lancia owners

    Sitting here in Gloucestershire, I was ready for another road trip but where and in what car

    I called a Swedish classic car friend ‘Hej Sven, har du en annan Lancia Fulvia till salu? Ok my Swedish was not great but hey, Sven got the jest, then broke into English.‘Paddy, good to hear from you. I have a ’71 S2 Fulvia but it needs some body work. It hasn’t been on the road since 2002 but the mechanics are good’. ‘Ok I’m interested, email me a few pics and full details'. That evening, I checked my email and true to form, Sven had done what he said. Another reason for doing business in Scandinavia is they understand the four basic C’s to run any successful business – courtesy, clarity,communication and consideration!

    Checking the pics, I could see the Fulvia was maroon with black interior. Ok, the paint was badly sun damaged and the front passenger seat needed to be recovered. Scruffy, but Sven assured me it was good mechanically with no major rust. I called him. 'What’s the price?’ ‘Ok that’s acceptable’ he said. ‘Great, I’ll be up next week and if everything is good, we have a deal’. Sure I was a bit cheeky but hey, last year on another Fulvia I bought from him, I had to do a few repairs to pass the rigorous, Swedish MOT to get the car back to merry England! .

    A few days later, I arrived at the car. Sure it was scruffy but appeared rust free from being stored for a long time. I checked the mileage, 88000 kms! I fired up the engine and, after a 20 minute hard run, the engine didn’t overheat or, leak oil. Included in the deal were lots of NOS & used parts – 2 front seats, reconditioned block/head, brake servo, steering gear, windscreen, front/ rear bumpers, new pistons, rings, wheel bearings etc and lots of chrome. After a bit of bargaining, I bought the car, loaded up all the parts and headed back to where I was staying.

    After a few minor repairs + service, the car passed the Swedish besikning (MOT) The next morning, my wife and I set off for Gloucestershire. On route past IKEA, she said ‘Let’s have lunch there,’ ‘Great idea’ . But as we approached IKEA, she cried out ‘What’s that noise?’ 'Ah that’s only the exhaust, banging against the rear axle. Don’t worry, I’ll fix it when I fill up'.‘I’m not crossing the Oresund bridge (a 20 minute connection between Sweden with Denmark) in this banger. ‘Drop me off at the train station. I’m flying home.’ she replied.

    Approaching IKEA, the noise felt like a puncture. I stopped the car to discover the rear tyre was flat. Undeterred, I untied the rope, holding down the boot lid, removed all the parts, until I pulled out the trolly jack and changed the wheel. Phew, was I glad I'd stashed two good spare tyres in the boot! After a quick lunch at IKEA – meatballs of course, I dropped my wife at the train and headed to the bridge tool booth.

    I tried my usual trick by putting the exact change in one hand. ‘Hi there, guess the hand and if you're wrong, it’s a freebie’ Your man, looked down at the sight of the rusty, old car with a roof rack full of chrome, sticking out of the plastic covering. OK it wasn’t the average, gleaming BMW/ Audi or Volvo but hey, it’ll give your man something to blather to his workmates I thought! 'That will be £34' he said.

    On route down through Denmark to catch the Danish / German ferry, I stopped off a few days with some South African friends in the countryside. When I arrived,the whole family came out. Needless to say, they had a good laugh at the sight of this scruffy looking ’71 Fulvia with a roof rack full of chrome and a half opened boot full of parts.

    Early the next morning, I headed off to catch the 45 minute ferry between Denmark & Germany. On route to Lubeck, hundreds of cars screamed past me. By now I was used to drivers / truckers / tour buses even the police,staring at me. ‘Haven't you lot never seen a Fulvia with a roofrack before?’ I muttered. But when a trucker overtook and flipped on his emergency lights, the penny dropped . Maybe, just maybe I lost the boot lid or, the 2 bar IKEA roof rack has become loose’ I thought to myself.

    I pulled over, got out and went around to the back to discover one rear, very battered rear exhaust box, trailing behind. Now it dawned on me why drivers were hooting their horns, waving frantically at me! Must have been a sight seeing sparks flying behind this little car! Not the normal sight on a German autobahn. But hey, I’d been in worse predicaments before and beside with each km, I was becoming more and more confident of my new purchase.

    Back on the autobahn, to relieve the boredom of having to go 80 kms, I started to look at various foreign number plates. Suddenly, a brand new Swedish car slowed down. I smiled and looked across at a very stylish woman. I could almost read her mind ‘What a loser, ‘Herre Gud Sven, thank God I married you!’ Their car roared off in the distance. On I continued with yet more high powered Germans, truckers, motor bikes, tour buses, whored past me, doing in excess of 110 kms. Even cars towing caravans were overtaking me! Well hey, it wasn’t hard as I was most likely the slowest, oldest vehicle on a German autobahn. But hey, this was FUN!

    But when I looked up and believe me lads, these Fulvias are like LOW, I caught sight of plenty of bored, kids, leaning out of their rear windows, poking cell phones, tablets and cameras at this unusual sight, I began to think. ‘Gawd, I bet before the next exit, one of these nerds will post this on Facebook or, You Tube’ Not exactly how I’d like to be famous for as I had other plans! But I suppose the sight of this tiny Fulvia with plastic flapping in the wind must have been amusing.

    Past Hamburg, I was getting used to drivers gawking down at me, ‘Looks like you’re all in a hurry for death’ I said to myself’. ‘Not me mate!’ I pulled into a rest area, checked the roof rack, changed the fuel filter again and got back in. I turned the key and no sound.I looked down at the dash. Not a blink. ‘F… the battery is dead’. I checked the battery leads and discovered a loose fan belt was the problem. Ten minutes later, the fan belt was tight and connected the jump cables.Looking around, I spotted motorist, smoking a fag and asked him ‘Any chance of a jump’ ‘No problem, have you cables?’ ‘Yep’. After a quick jump, the engine fired up and off I sped, or rather, crawled out onto the F1 autobahn. One day, I muttered, I’ll be on this road, doing 160 kms + in a '65 2.8 Flaminia Zagato Super Sport!

    Fed up with cars whoring past me, I headed to Oldenburg to get to Groningen in N.Holland. My plan was to stay the night and head down through Holland to Dunkirk. After a 13 hour run, I reached Groningen - exhausted.After a good nights sleep and another fuel filter change, I was off. About 100 kms the engine started to splutter. Again, I just made it to a service station, checked and changed another plastic fuel filter. I regretted not having cleaned the tank but didn't have time to hang around Sweden.

    In South Holland, I pulled in and spent the night. The next day, near Brussels, I drove over to a Lancia enthusiast whom I’d met online on the Lancisti forum He kindly checked out my carburettors and fuel pump which were ok. He then blew high pressure up through the petrol line.

    After a 2 hour pitstop, I headed to Dunkirk to catch the ferry to Dover. ‘No way am I heading to Calais’ I muttered to myself. The last thing I want is one of those migrants removing precious parts and hiding inside the boot’ Suddenly, my front wheels started to wobble badly. ‘It couldn’t be unbalanced front wheel’ I cried out. After checking both front wheels, I spotted a missing right wheel weight. Nothing to do but to drop down to 70 kms which ended that problem. With 2 hours to kill, at the ferry terminal, I hopped out, whipped off the fuel filter and cleaned the spark plugs.

    At 10 pm, I boarded the boat and arrived into Dover. On the hill outside Dover, heading to the A20, the car started to splutter. ‘Not again’ I cried out. AsI struggled to keep the engine going, I couldn't stop because there was no hard shoulder. Suddenly, up ahead, I saw a sign ‘Exit A260 to Canterbury.’ I limped off the busy road and just made it, when the car died. Stuck on the roundabout at 11.30 pm, I spotted a few road maintenance lads. I got out, pushed the car off the roundabout and walked over to them ‘Lads, any chance of a jump? ‘Sure’ replied a friendly worker. ‘Hold on I’ll take the heavy duty battery out from the mobile traffic lights. Ten minutes later, the engine fired up and, as it was almost midnight, I decided to park up safely. ‘And if you’re stuck in the morning, just jump it off the mobile traffic light batteries’ say the road safety lad.

    I called my wife who wasn’t too happy at being disturbed at 12.30 am to ask her for a friend’s cell no! Two hours later, he arrived and loaded me up on his car trailer, taking me the 330 kms home. At 9 am, I pushed the car down into my underground car parking space and the two of us walked along the terrace. My wife was delighted at the safe return. ‘See, I told you the Fulvia make it. And incredibly, I never had to top up with oil or, water! And that my friends is the end of a very memorable Nordic 3700 kms road trip.

    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 391 s 'S2 Fulvia Sweden.jpg  
    Last edited by julian67; 12th April 2019 at 04:57 AM.

  2. #2
    Experienced Lancista geert's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Damme, Belgie

    Re: A Nordic Fulvia road trip

    Nice story !

    glad you finally made it.
    Date on the picture is 2015 : you took your time for that 3200 km road trip

    have the same marroon/bordeaux fulvia as a spares car. Sicilian origin but a lot worse.

    There is no way immigrants would even think to dive in that lancia, a dinghy looks a lot safer

    grten, Geert.

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