The task of the Dedra was demanding: it must gather the legacy of Prisma, which relaunched the Lancia brand in the field of compact executive cars, and expand its market share if possible. Larger than its predecessor, the Dedra was presented as the second flagship car of Lancia, as a car that could satisfy those looking for an elegant medium sized sedan but did not want to buy an executive car, as the Thema.
The design, by Ercole Spada of the I.DE.A Institute, produced an excellent drag coefficient of only 0.29. The core of the product was prestige, exclusivity, personality and comfort, achieved through a high level of equipment and use of materials (eg Alcantara) as well as details such as special paints, alloy wheels and an attention to soundproofing, ventilation and other issues. Inside the ability to obtain the perfect driving position was helped by the adjustable seats, steering wheel and electrically adjustable mirrors. Safety, both passive with a structure designed to minimize injury in an accident, and active, such as ABS and airbag, was also near the top of the Dedra's agenda.