1956 Lancia Aurelia B24S America Convertibile (PininFarina)
Chassis no. B24S-1241 - Engine no. 1379
- Eligible for the Mille Miglia in the select list
- One of the "II series" Aurelia B24, the rarest of the three series with only 150 cars built
- Matching Numbers Property of a well-known Italian collection
- Beautifully restored
The first Lancia car of the post-war period, the revolutionary Aurelia designed by Vittorio Jano appeared in 1950. It boasted a series of revolutionary innovations: the first V-6 engine with a V of 60° as standard, developed by Francesco de Virgilio, 1.8 litres, the unibody with independent four-wheel suspension, the transaxle clutch-gearbox-differential and inboard rear brakes, were the essential technical features. The Aurelia presents the qualities of comfort, luxury and ride’s flexibility. A year later, in the spring of 1951, arrived an engine with a displacement of 2 litres, fitted on the new B20 coupe and, as an alternative to the 1.8 litres, on the sedan. In 1953, Lancia introduced on the Aurelia a new de Dion tube rear suspension. Later, an accessible version, the B24 Spider, was introduced. It was mechanically similar to the B20 coupé, fitted with the 2.5-litre engine, with an 8 inch (203 mm) shorter wheelbase. One of Pinin Farina’s masterpieces, the Lancia B24 Spider, was first shown at the 1955 Brussels Motor Show and immediately loved by the public for its unusually clean lines. The young Gianni Lancia’s ideas were those of an elite and sporting product, with a design winking at overseas trends. He commissioned the first car to Pinin Farina, which already had experience in this specific sector, having created a spider in 1952 on behalf of the American Nash. The design was stunning. Among the details, the panoramic windscreen stands out. The production of the spider ceased in October 1955, with 240 units produced.When the Pesenti’s family took over the Lancia company, the accessible version of the Lancia grand tourer saw a transformation that made it less original but also eliminated several inconveniences of the previous "Spider". The new version of the B24 officially called "Convertible America", debuted at the Turin Motor Show on April 21, 1956. In addition to the several mechanical modifications that also affected the B20 and which sacrificed a few horses, the new B24 appeared more classic and comfortable: the panoramic windshield disappeared, the (more wraparound) bumpers no longer had the unique "wings", the air intake on the bonnet was modified (greater width and less height), the wider doors had handles, and descending windows, the dashboard and the instrumentation were different. This series was supplied exclusively with left-hand drive. Contrary to what happened with the sedan, the Aurelia B24 has never been officially classified by "series," but the subdivision has entered the common use. The B24 Convertible America, the so-called "series II" or "inter-series," were built in 150 units from July to December 1956.In the early months of 1957, the B24 Convertible underwent the same mechanical changes as the B20 coupe. Unchanged from an aesthetic point of view, this third (and last) series officially loses the name "America". In the price list up to May 1959, it totals the most significant number (371) of specimens.Pilots used the coupé B20 as a racing car. Therefore the B24 was used mainly for leisure. Nevertheless, it participated also in races, and two B24s ran the Mille Miglia in 1956 and 1957.
The Lancia Aurelia B24S - chassis no. B24S-1241 - is the 60th car produced of the so-called “II series,” since this version of the B24 was built from July to December 1956 with the chassis numbers from B24S-1182 to B24S-1331. This version was put on the market with the official name “Aurelia GT 2500 Convertible America.” All the cars were B24S, where the “S” stood for “sinistra” (Italian for left) since all these cars were left-hand drive. Chassis no. B24S-1241 has all thefeatures of the B24S, is a little slower than the “series I,” but much more refined in any mechanical and aesthetical detail. It was bodied, of course, by Pinin Farina and sold in August 1956 in Turin. It received its current Milan plates in the early 1970s, and it was always kept with care by enthusiasts of the model. Chassis no. B24S-1241 participated in the Mille Miglia in 2005, with a red livery and hazelnut brown leather interior. Later, it became part of an outstanding Italian collection. The car was subjected to a careful and complete restoration in 2015 commissioned by the owners, collectors known for their meticulous attention to detail. The restoration in a correct colour-combination, metallic grey/red leather, is documented by over one hundred photographs. The chassis no. B24S-1241 is a car that can compete in the main re-enactments and the Mille Miglia – in the select list – and can participate in the most important Concourse d’Elegance. It is, indeed, an exceptional work of art and example of Italian talent, worthy of the Renaissance.
State of the Art: Comprehensive restoration in 2015, with photographic documentation.
- Geoffrey Goldberg, Lancia and De Virgilio, At the Center, David Bull Publishing, UK 2014.
- Ferruccio Bernabò, Lancia Aurelia GT, Tutto sui modelli dell’Aurelia, Giorgio Nada Editore, MI 2002.
Registration and Italian license plates in order and updated.
- Mille Miglia. Eligible in the special class.
- Giro di Sicilia. Eligible.
- Targa Florio. Eligible.
- Goodwood Revival. Eligible
- Le Mans Classic. Eligible.
- Coppa d’Oro delle Dolomiti. Eligible.
- Circuito di Pescara. Elegible
- Vernasca Silver Flag. Eligible.
- California Mille: Eligible.
- Nürburgring Classic. Eligible.
- Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. Eligible.
- Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance. Eligible.
- Chantilly Arts & Elegance Richard Mille. Eligible.
- Concorso d’eleganza Villa D’Este. Eligible.