Chassis number: B20-1833
Gearbox: 4-speed manual
In the post-war years, Lancia were arguably the greatest innovators and engineers in the Italian motor industry, building on Vincenzo Lancia’s original drive for excellence in design and construction. Led by Gianni Lancia, son of founder Vincenzo, and chief engineer Vittorio Jano, designer of the P2 and P3 Grand Prix cars, the Lancia Aurelia would be the company’s first post-war project.
Introduced in 1950 as a 4-door pillarless berlina, the car found immediate success and was renowned for having the first series-production V6 engine, developed by Francesco de Virgilio. In 1951 the seminal B20GT coupe was launched; effectively the first production GT car.
In this initial 2-litre coupé form, the B20GT enjoyed immediate rally and race success, including second place on its debut in the 1951 Mille Miglia.
The Series II Aurelia B20GT coupé arrived in 1952 with various upgrades, including a revised version of the 1,991cc V6 now producing 80bhp, improved brakes and several styling modifications, such as new chromed bumpers, new dashboard with larger instrument gauges, and uniquely-shaped rear wings.
One of just 731 Series 2 examples Lancia built, this car boasts a detailed history from new, including from its arrival in the UK in 1974, since when it has had an engine rebuild and two glass-out repaints. The car also retains its original tool kit, jack and accessories.
The car has one of the most complete history files that we have ever seen, and has been meticulously maintained by the same UK Lancista since its 1974 importation. Over the last 12 months Thornley Kelham have reshaped the rear wings back to correct profile, serviced the car thoroughly, including propshaft balancing, and detailed the car to the level it deserves.
These early, lighter 2-litre cars with the IRS rear end were favoured by both factory and privateer racing drivers and are a joy to drive. The combination of history from new, fabulous condition and impeccable maintenance, make this this is as good a second-series B20GT as you will find anywhere in the world.
The car also features as the showcase Series 2 example over 6 pages in Niels Jonassen’s invaluable book ‘Lancia Aurelia in Detail’, which remains the ‘go-to’ reference for the Aurelia cars.
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