Lot 3151

Gene Ponder Collection

1952 Alfa Romeo 1900 C52 ‘Disco Volante’ Spider Recreation


$143,000 USD | Sold

United States | Marshall, Texas



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US Title
  • Hand-built recreation of the lenticular Alfa Romeo “Disco Volante” series of experimental race cars
  • Based upon a Jaguar XK 150 chassis and powered by a Jaguar XK 140 3.4-liter engine fed by a trio of Weber 45 DCOE carburetors
  • Painstakingly constructed with a “cost is no object” approach over the course of four years
  • Accompanied by documentation detailing the construction process
Please note that this lot is titled as a 1959 Jaguar.

As sales of its 1900 Saloon began to accelerate, Alfa Romeo, fresh off multiple recent world racing championships, had to decide whether it could continue to balance both its line of production cars along with its legendary racing division. Conceived by the head of Alfa Romeo’s racing division, Gioacchino Colombo—the man who also designed the first Ferrari V-12 engine—the new C52 series was to be a radical experiment in applying aerodynamics to auto racing. Many long days and nights were spent in the wind tunnel to develop the final result: a slippery, lenticular shape formed by Touring of Milan and quickly nicknamed “Disco Volante,” Italian for “Flying Saucer.”

Five Disco Volantes were produced in a variety of configurations (three used a 2.0-liter four-cylinder, white two used a 3.5-liter six-cylinder). Four exist today, and each is closely held in top museums around the globe, including two in Alfa Romeo’s own collection in Arese.

As the existing examples are unlikely to ever be offered to a private buyer, and would no doubt be worth millions of dollars if they ever were, Gene Ponder set out to build a dazzling recreation of Colombo’s creation. The process began in 2017, with a bare Jaguar XK 150 chassis (originally from a Drophead Coupe) as the starting point. ADC Enterprises of Red Oak, Texas hand-formed an aluminum body that closely recreates the Disco Volante’s famous, sculptural form. A Jaguar XK 140 3.4-liter inline-six with a C-Type head, fed by a trio of Weber 45 DCOE carburetors and mated to a five-speed transmission, powers the car, while details like Marchal headlamps complete the period-correct picture.

Presented here after over four years, and well over six figures’ worth, of work, this striking recreation of the Disco Volante offers enthusiasts the opportunity to appreciate one of Alfa Romeo’s most unforgettable designs. Artfully crafted and finely finished, it stands ready to stun attendees at any gathering.