When one of the Abarthisti suggested a mid-week meet for those in the London area, it did not take long before someone proposed the legendary Ace cafe as a potential venue. This well known landmark, situated to one side of the North Circular, just north of the Hanger Lane gyratory system came to the attention of car and bike enthusiasts some time ago, when it started to hold themed nights and people just turned up with interesting vehicles. What used to be a monthly occurrence has become far more frequent than that, and when we did some research, it turned out that there was something in their calendar just about every every evening. An Italian car evening seemed just right and it was quickly agreed that this would be the perfect setting for a dozen forummers to assemble.By the time I arrived, the forecourt infront of the cafe was packed with cars and bikes. Although we had an area reserved for Abarthisti, as I was in the Audi, the car park man was absolutely adamant that I would have to park up the road.
Although there was indeed a good mix of cars and bikes in attendance, my camera baulked at photographing some of them, as heavily modified Puntos are not really to my taste.
The rarest car in attendance was definitely this, the very lovely Lancia Hyena. These gorgeous coupes were built on Delta Integrale mechanicals, but Lancia quickly decided that they did not want the venture to go ahead and made it increasingly difficult for Zagato to get the parts they needed. Less than 100 cars were made, so they are super rare. When they do come up for sale, the asking price tends to leave little change out of £100,000.
Sadly, the equally nice Flaminia Zagato departed before I got the chance to point my camera at it.
There was one Nuova 500, which appeared oh-so-small next to the latest generation model: