The Lancia Thesis is a weird looking car [ed. note: think beluga whale-weird], especially at a first glance, but once you look beyond the peculiar headlights and very slim rear lights, you’re left with a sleek shape, with bags of room inside and unmistakably Italian styling and design cues throughout.
Made between 2001 and 2009, none of these front-wheel drive sedans were officially exported to the United States, but wherever there’s an interest, an appropriate shipping container can be found, along with the paperwork to make registration possible.
That could be considered a disambiguation of the story behind this 2002 example for sale in Maryland – $6,800 is the price on Craigslist. It’s a 2002 model, equipped with a 2.0-liter turbocharged petrol engine that makes 182 hp (not 215 as the Craigslist seller says) and a manual five-speed gearbox.
Originally, it could sprint to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 8.9 seconds and went on to a top speed of 224 km/h or 139 mph. Moreover, this engine was actually a straight-five, and thus it also sounded pretty good when in thrash mode.
It comes finished in metallic green, and has the pleasant beige leather interior that doesn’t look all that worn. The interiors of Italian cars from the period are known to be a bit flaky, but this one seems fairly clean after 110,000 km or 68,350 miles.
There is a catch, though. Apparently, it can only “be sold to the members of the diplomatic or international organizations community in USA (UN, World Bank, IMF, OAM, etc) ONLY (diplomatic status A1, A2 or G1 visa) due to the import restrictions” – no private buyers allowed!
Scroll down to check out the photos, but don’t for a second take the seller’s word that this is similar to a Maserati Quattroporte – it’s not, but it is unique in many ways.
By Andrei Nedelea