Micropost: 1994-2000 Lancia Kappa SW

Given Lancia made only 9028 examples of the Kappa SW, I see them often enough.

1994-2000 Lancia 1994 Kappa SW, Guben, Germany.
1994-2000 Lancia Kappa SW, Guben, Germany.

Pininfarina did the design and construction and I expect charged Lancia more for this than Lancia made selling them. That makes them good value now.

You’d want an SW if a Kappa saloon appeared too common, if a BMW 5 too mainstream, an XM too complex and a Scorpio too ugly and an Omega too banal.

Author: richard herriott

I like anchovies. I dislike post-war town planning.

10 thoughts on “Micropost: 1994-2000 Lancia Kappa SW”

  1. Taken for granted at the time, it’s a semi-hand made late-example of the coach-builders’ fading craft. While it’s a bit home-made, the load bay, the whole lot hangs together pleasingly. 9000 examples [exclamation point]. It’s rare without being hard to look after. I’d dearly like to cross-compare the XM and Kappa estate. Are there any more idiosyncratic estates from this period? I think not.

    1. The load bay does look rather home made. The side window line upset me at the time (the top of the third window doesn’t appear to line up with anything) and I’m afraid it still upsets me.

      Also, the Kappa wasn’t pitched against the 5 series and cars of that ilk was it? If so, no wonder it sold badly. To my mind, it was competing against something like the Honda Accord.

  2. Not only the design itself seems to age well, also the cars appear quite durable – or well looked after. From the 9000 pieces, a substantial part must have been sold in Switzerland. It’s probably more common here than the saloon, and it can still be seen in good shape.

    Regarding other estates from the period, is the Saab 9-5 idiosyncratic enough?

    1. Thanks – I racked my brain for a second and gave up before remembering the 9-5. Is that eccentric enough? We have a high bar. The Lancia claims hand-production and the Citroen its hydropneumatics and singular appearance. The Saab is a whole lot odder than a Scorpio, W-126/W-210 and Omega, yes, but it has nothing the 940 or S70 can’t match, I’d say. That’s not to say there’s much wrong with it.

    2. Yes, the 9-5 has been GMized a lot. I think the 4-cylinder turbo engines and the ignition lock in the centre console have been left as the only Saab oddities. What I can’t judge is how saabish the car feels. Is it closer to an original 900 or to a contemporary BMW, for example? If that Saab aura has been able to survive, the 9-5 should deserve a place next to the Kappa, even if its technologies are more mainstream. By the way, Kappa and 9-5 are related in an odd way – their predecessors are platform siblings.

  3. These cars are at the bottom of the value curve. I looked at mobile.de and there are decent examples for €600. If you want dark red or dark blue velour, you won’t it anywhere else. In five years the values for these can only rise.
    I think I’ve missed the CX and 604 boats… maybe a Kappa will have to do should the need arise.

    1. Hey, you are on the XM boat. Isn’t that car at the same point in its career as the Kappa?

  4. The XM is still lingering, isn’t it? The numbers remaining will have to get lower before supply reduces such that demand means a higher sale price. Additionally, Citroen has changed its image so that fewer and fewer people know the brand means something other than cheap, zany small cars. Buyers of classic Mercedes know what they are getting: the same thing only older. Someone looking to buy an XM? What’s that, a large executive car with the same badge as a C1 penalty box?

  5. Jacomo: no Accord buyer ever considered a Lancia Kappa. Lancia fancied BMW and Audi-type buyers would consider it. In actuality, Lancia customers were unicorns outside Italy. Certain Germans like Italian culture – maybe they went for it as perhaps did those who might have plumped for Saab or Citroen. Not enough people existed to fill whatever Venn diagram Lancia’s marketing person dreamed up.

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