Villa Erba

25 May 2013

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Lot 129

1955 Lancia Aurelia B24S Spider by Pinin Farina

  • Chassis no. B24S 1147
  • Engine no. B24 1213

Sold for €492.800

118 bhp, 2,451 cc overhead-valve 60-degree V-6 engine, four-speed manual transmission, sliding pillar independent front suspension, De Dion rear axle with a transaxle gearbox differential, and four-wheel hydraulic drum brakes. Wheelbase: 2,451 mm (96.5 in)

  • The hottest Italian roadster on the market today
  • Ready to drive and enjoy

As Lancia’s notoriety spread stateside following World War II, the time came for the company to offer an open sports car to the booming market in the United States. The result, the Aurelia B24S Spider, was built to a design by Pinin Farina, and it ranks among the most striking automobiles of its decade, boldly challenging Ferrari with its aggressive hood scoop, flowing front wings, softly curving rear wings with mild flares, and a wrap-around windshield. It is muscular yet restrained, sporting yet elegant—everything that an aristocrat’s high-speed summer transportation should be.

The Spider’s advanced specification, semi-custom bodywork, and superb build quality made it expensive to build. Only 181 left-hand drive Spiders were made, of which only 114 examples survive today, and even fewer are in restored condition.

The car offered here at Villa Erba is one of the few equipped with a glove box door, as found with U.S.-delivery cars, and it is also fitted with metric Italian gauges. At one point, it was owned by the late Gary Lee Byrd, a legendary figure among American Lancia enthusiasts, noted for his passion for the marque and for owning and restoring, at one point or another, virtually every model the factory ever produced. He was once described as “the most knowledgeable Lancisti on the West Coast”, respected for his knowledge and the quality of the automobiles he owned.

The Spider has since been the recipient of a decade-long restoration, personally directed by the owner, with a Turin-based specialist in the Lancia brand. During the restoration, the original colours of beige over black were replaced with sporting red over biscuit tan, always appropriate to an Italian sports roadster. It is important to note that the car retains a rare, original domed horn button, seldom seen on restored examples. Always treated like a work of art to be admired, the Lancia has been driven only 690 kilometres since completion of the restoration, all during regular short tours in the Turin area, to keep the car mechanically functioning as it should.

These stunning Spiders are highly prized by their intensely loyal owners. They offer a nearly ideal combination of desirable characteristics: they are fast, with delightfully nimble handling, quick and responsive steering, and undeniable grace and beauty. Their racing bloodlines and thoroughly sporting manner makes them not only eligible for, but ideal candidates to participate in, any important driving event worldwide.

They are seldom, if ever, offered. The competition for this car may be expected to be intense—exceeded, perhaps, only by the rewards that the car will offer the winning bidder.


Please note this car does not retain its original gearbox and has been fitted with a later type Lancia gearbox. It is offered for sale with proof of EU taxes paid and not an Italian libretto as stated in the catalogue.

Alexander Weaver

+1 864 313 6844
California, United States

Alexander Weaver joined RM Sotheby’s in 2011 as a Car Specialist after graduating from Furman University in South Carolina. Born... read more

Augustin Sabatié-Garat

+44 (0) 74 1511 4179
United Kingdom

Augustin Sabatié-Garat joined RM Europe in 2012 as a Car Specialist after more than a decade in the collector car hobby. Gradua... read more

Barney Ruprecht

+1 203 912 7168
Ontario, Canada

Barney’s interest in classic cars began at an early age after being introduced to his father’s all-original 1965 Porsche 911. Barney l... read more

David Swig

+1 415 302 2247
California, United States

David Swig joined RM Sotheby’s West Coast division as a Car Specialist in May 2015. David is a life-long automobile enthusi... read more

Don Rose

+1 617 513 0388
United States

Don joined RM in 2006 after several years of professionally trading sports and classic cars, and after earning a reputation as a noted... read more

Donnie Gould

+1 954 566 2209
Florida, United States

Donnie Gould joined the RM team in 2002 as a partner and Car Specialist after more than two decades in the vintage automobile auction ... read more

Gord Duff

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

Gord Duff began his journey with RM Sotheby’s in 1998. Since then, he has gained an intimate knowledge of a variety of marques a... read more

Jake Auerbach

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Jake Auerbach got his start in the automotive industry at an early age, spending his summers during high school working at a classic c... read more

Kurt Forry

+1 717 623 1638
California, United States

Having worked for Bonhams’ Automobilia department for over 10 years, Kurt Forry joined RM Sotheby’s with more than a decad... read more

Matt Malamut

+1 805 231 6410
California, United States

A long-time car enthusiast and Southern California native, Matt studied Automotive Technology at San Diego Miramar College and complet... read more

Michael Squire

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Michael Squire joined RM Sotheby’s European Division in the summer of 2016. He comes to RM with a prestigious racing background ... read more

Mike Fairbairn

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

As one of the three founding partners of RM Sotheby’s, Mike has a long-standing interest in the classic car industry. Graduating... read more

Oliver Camelin

+44 (0) 75 0110 7447
United Kingdom

With an extensive background in exotic sports car history and sales, a particular passion for American curves, and fluency in three la... read more

Paul Darvill

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Paul Darvill joined the RM Sotheby’s European team at the beginning of 2015. Paul holds a degree in French and Politics from the... read more

Pete Fisher

+1 519 784 9300
Ontario, Canada

Pete Fisher was first introduced to antique cars in high school, working for Classic Coachworks in his hometown of Blenheim, Ontario. ... read more

Shelby Myers

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Shelby Myers grew up with the classic car industry infused into every aspect of his life. He had the unique opportunity to watch the R... read more

Tonnie Van der Velden

+31 653 84 19 60
United Kingdom

Tonnie Van der Velden joined RM Sotheby’s European division in September 2015 as a Car Specialist. A lifelong enthusiast, Tonnie... read more