$800,000 - $900,000 USD | Not Sold
| Monterey, California
- One of only 181 left-hand-drive Spider Americas produced; retains numbers-matching V-6 engine
- Formerly owned by noted collector Oscar Davis and now offered by a curator of fine Italian automobiles; achieved an Award of Merit at the 2023 Boca Raton Concours d’Elegance
- Benefits from over $14,000 in 2023 service work performed by D.L. George Historic Motorcars, including a new clutch, an updated voltage regulator, and detailing and paintwork
- Ideal for rallies and driving events worldwide, including the Mille Miglia Storica, the Colorado Grand, and the California Mille
Created under the guidance of Vittorio Jano, who had developed some of the great Alfa Romeos of the pre-war era, the Lancia Aurelia featured a pioneering V-6 engine—the first such production example—paired with a transaxle gearbox for optimal weight distribution. The brilliance of the Lancia Aurelia was hardly limited to the sports cars built on this innovative platform. The vast majority of Lancia Aurelias were coupes or four-door sedans; thanks to their advanced underpinnings, these practical cars are still praised for their engaging performance.
When Lancia did apply the Aurelia platform’s attributes to a purist sports car, however, the results were spectacular. Introduced in 1954 and built for just two years, the Aurelia B24 Spider America was intended in large part to capitalize on the export market (as its name clearly suggests). It benefitted from the improvements implemented for the Aurelia’s fourth series, including a more potent 118-horsepower engine. It also rode on a sprightly wheelbase shorter than that of standard Aurelias.
On this truncated wheelbase, Pinin Farina draped its perfectly proportioned bodywork. Rightly praised today as a jewel of post-war design, the Spider America features a prominent hood scoop and defined rear haunches that immediately suggest athleticism; these features are balanced by the subtle split front and rear bumpers—which flank the proud, shieldlike Lancia grille in the front—and a delicately framed panoramic windshield. Notably, the car lacks exterior door handles, contributing to its uncluttered look.
This sense of purpose continues inside the cabin, where the suite of instrumentation has been condensed to just three gauge clusters: A large, round speedometer positioned just ahead of the wood-rimmed steering wheel, with smaller circular clusters on either side displaying a tachometer and fuel and oil gauges. Switchgear, too, is at an absolute minimum, leaving little to distract a driver from the road ahead. Should inclement weather arise, a basic fabric top and curtain windows could be fitted, but this was by design a car best enjoyed in the open air and sunshine.
In total, just 240 B24 Spiders were built from 1954 through 1955, with 181 being of left-hand-drive, or Sinestra, configuration. The B24 Convertible that followed was, with its permanent convertible top, roll-up windows, and door handles, arguably better suited to daily driving duties than the minimalistic roadster. For those seeking the ultimate blend of pure, uncompromised styling and thrilling driving dynamics, however, there is simply no substitute for the B24 Spider America.
CHASSIS NUMBER B24S-1157
According to the Lancia Certificate of Origin on file, this car was completed in October 1955, the final year for the model, and it was originally finished in Grigio over Arancione leather. At the present little more is known about its earlier years, though it has retained its numbers-matching engine (stamped B24-1209) to the present day.
Over the decades it is believed to have made its way through at least two large American collections before joining the esteemed stables of Oscar Davis. When purchased by Davis, the Lancia was finished in silver over blue; he would also leave his mark upon the car with a color change, choosing a striking white over a red-trimmed interior with red wheels in tribute to a B24S Spider America he had previously owned.
Following acquisition by its present owner—a collector and curator of award-winning fine Italian automobiles—in 2022, D.L. George Historic Motorcars of Cochranville, Pennsylvania was enlisted to fit a new clutch and a modern voltage regulator. Further tasks included touch-up paintwork under the hood, as well as the hubcaps and wheels, and brake adjustment. As invoices and photos on file attest, over $14,000 was invested in improving what was already an extremely appealing Aurelia. The results were soon recognized with an Award of Merit in the Post-War Touring class at the 2023 Bocca Raton Concours d’Elegance.
This Lancia's next owner will find it to be a spirited companion on an enviable list of tours, rallies, and driving events—indeed, it is eligible for many of the world’s best, including the Mille Miglia Storica. Campaigning aside, this car represents something truly special: groundbreaking engineering, thrilling driving dynamics, uncompromised purpose, and undeniable rarity all wrapped in the beautiful styling of Pinin Farina.
Few cars hit all of these notes quite so deftly, making this 1955 Lancia Aurelia B24S Spider America an irresistible opportunity.