Auctions and Brokerage
Coachwork by Pinin Farina
Juan Hermano da Silva Ramos, Paris, France (acquired new)Alexis Berkin and Family (acquired from the above in 1957)
Concorso Italiano, Carmel, California, August 2006 (Special Grandstand Recognition, Chosen by Director)Fourth Annual Pebble Beach Motoring Classic, Pebble Beach, California, August 2008 (Participant, 1,500-Mile Rally/Tour from Seattle, Washington, to Pebble Beach, California)Pebble Beach Tour d’Elegance®, Pebble Beach, California, August 2008 and 2009 (Participant, 60-Mile Tour)Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance®, Pebble Beach, California, August 2009 (Class L2-04, Preservation Class)Ironstone Concours d’Elegance, Murphys, California, September 2009 (Preservation Class Award of Merit)Danville Concours d’Elegance, Danville, California, September 2010 (Shown, Preservation Class)Palo Alto Concours d’Elegance and California Mille, Palo Alto, California, April 2010 (Exhibited)“Cars, Collectibles & Cinema,” Museum of Monterey, Monterey, California, August 2011 (Preservation Exhibit)San Jose Country Club Concours d’Elegance, San Jose, California, May 2012 (Exhibited)
Lancia’s first new postwar model, the Aurelia, was an unqualified tour de force developed by former Alfa Romeo engineer Vittorio Jano. Powered by the world’s first production V-6 – a powerful, refined unit – the Aurelia also featured an excellent suspension, rear transaxle, and inboard rear brakes. Quickly upgraded to B20GT form, the Aurelia finished 2nd in the 1951 Mille Miglia. High-profile victories included the 1951 Le Mans 24 Hours, 1952 Targa Florio, 1953 Liege-Rome-Liege rally, a podium sweep at the 1953 Carrera Panamericana, and victory in the 1954 Monte Carlo Rally. By 1954, the stunning Pinin Farina-designed B24 Spider was introduced. For 1957, the improved B24S Convertible arrived with roll-up windows, a sturdier transaxle, improved seating, and a revised windscreen. Just 510 B24S Convertibles were built.
According to Lancia Aurelia historian Francesco Gandolfi, this highly desirable fifth-series, left-hand-drive B24S Convertible was completed on July 26, 1956, and tested, finished, and delivered on January 25, 1957. The current owner’s father purchased it in late 1957 from Gordini Grand Prix driver Juan Hermano da Silva Ramos via Joseph “Papa” Cattaneo, whose garage in St. Cloud, France, was the European base for Luigi Chinetti’s NART team. The current owner’s parents met and subsequently married in Europe, and the Aurelia provided many wonderful memories. It was repainted in white at the Lancia factory in Torino, where it was serviced from 1957 to 1962 (original service invoices are on file). In September 1962, the Aurelia was shipped from France to New York and then driven until 1965 in Upstate New York, where it was placed on blocks and garaged until 2001 with 75,000 km (approximately 46,600 miles). In September 2001, it was shipped to California, and, in 2006, the Aurelia was serviced by specialists in San Jose, California, who returned the car to life while preserving its wonderful originality.
The remarkably preserved Aurelia has appeared at top classic car events in California and has won several awards, including selection by the director for Special Grandstand Recognition at the 2006 Concorso Italiano. In August 2008, it was invited to, and participated in, the 4th Annual Pebble Beach Motoring Classic – a 1,500-mile rally and tour from Seattle to Pebble Beach – and its appearance at the August 2008 Pebble Beach Tour d’Elegance® was the subject of a documentary. In August 2009, the Aurelia participated in the 60-mile Pebble Beach Tour d’Elegance®, and it was shown in Class L2-04 – Preservation at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance®. In September 2009, the Aurelia received the Preservation Class Award of Merit at the Ironstone Concours d’Elegance. More showings followed through 2012.
Never restored, incredibly original and featuring a delightfully natural patina, this highly desirable Aurelia shows paint cracks and blemishes but has not suffered accident damage. After six years of concours and show appearances and with approximately 5,000 km from 2006 to 2015, the vehicle has a total of approximately 81,650 km (or 50,000 miles) today. The original and rarely used convertible top remains in good shape and the Aurelia retains the original Blaupunkt radio, original tool kit and jack, manuals, Lancia factory service invoices, and floor mats (with signs of age). The original leather interior remains in excellent preserved condition. As offered, the car drives very well in a quick and highly spirited fashion. The car is very fun to drive with excellent handling, and performs and sounds very much as it did when new 60 years ago.
Remarkably preserved throughout, this rare and highly attractive Aurelia B24S is a race-bred, Pinin Farina design masterpiece with fully known history from new and exceptional documentation. As such, this wonderful 1957 B24S Convertible is incredibly charismatic, collectible, and enjoyable.