Hershey | Lot 188
1950 Allard K1/2 Two-Seater
$90,750 USD | Sold
| Hershey, Pennsylvania
7 October 2021
- A truly one-of-a-kind Allard, factory-specified with K1 bodywork on a K2 chassis
- Ford “Flathead” V-8 power, with triple carburetors and Edelbrock intake and heads; three-speed manual transmission
- Delivered new to the United States with left-hand drive
- Formerly owned by celebrated sculptor and furniture artist Wendell Castle
- Ideal for exhibition or vintage competition; accompanied by original factory documentation and build cards
Sydney Allard was, in many ways, the British equivalent to Carroll Shelby, pioneering the construction of a lightweight European racer designed to accommodate American brute force under the hood. Left with a supply of surplus Ford engines and parts on hand after World War II, his London shop assembled them into profitable sports cars, the first of which was the K1, a two-seater on a box section frame with transverse leaf springing and split-axle independent front suspension developed by Leslie Ballamy. Designed for either Ford or Mercury flathead V-8 power, the lightweight K1 boasted road-burning acceleration. No surprise, then, that its success in privateer racing soon carried over to the United States.
The car offered here is believed to be of unique specifications, created through Allard’s constant evolution and the fickleness of its original owner. Original Allard factory correspondence, which remains with the car to this day, tells the story. The owner originally placed an order for the new, updated K2 model, with its smoothed bodywork featuring a Healey-inspired radiator grille. An addendum to the order, however, was issued on 21 March 1950, canceling the K2, as the owner had decided that he wanted a K1 instead! Accordingly, original K1-style bodywork was built and installed on an improved, left-hand-drive K2 chassis with coil-spring front suspension and a revised dashboard layout, creating a one-off “K1/2.”
Delivery to the United States was made through the John Forbes Agency of Boston, Massachusetts. According to a former owner, the car was disassembled during the late 1950s and stored until its subsequent sale in 1972, then received a hobbyist restoration over a 30-year period. A subsequent owner purchased the car in 2003 and commissioned a professional job, bringing the car to its present well-finished condition, inside and out, in silver with a lovely, subtle pewter interior. In 2017, the K1/2 was acquired by internationally recognized sculptor and furniture artist Wendell Castle, who clearly recognized the appeal of its unconventional styling.
Today, the quality of the paint and interior are both superb, and both remain in excellent condition, as would be expected of a car reportedly driven fewer than 600 miles since the work was completed. The dashboard carries beautiful, Smiths gauges, set into a handsome wooden fascia. Under the hood is a 1947 Ford flathead V-8, bored out to 295 cubic inches and equipped with Edelbrock heads and intake manifold, as well as triple Stromberg 97 carburetors.
The car is offered today accompanied by its original documentation, as well as wheel tools and a tonneau cover. Further, the original serial number plate remains present. An outstanding showpiece or vintage rally entrant, this beautifully presented Allard counts among its previous owners high-performance enthusiasts as well as a noted artist—unique provenance befitting such a truly unique car.