We are pleased to offer 1958 Lancia B24S s/n B24S-1640, one of only 371 Sixth Series Aurelia Convertibles built and certainly one of the few survivors. Very nicely finished in Grigio Brillante (Silver-grey metallic) with Pelle Rossa (Red leather) and fitted with a rare and very desirable Nardi kit with a Nardi upper radiator pipe, twin Weber 40 DCL5 carbs (with sequential numbers 1692 and 1693) mounted on a cast aluminum Nardi intake manifold and topped off with a cast aluminum Nardi air cleaner. Also fitted with the user-friendly Nardi floor shift conversion. Also fitted with a very rare original Factory hardtop and a black soft top with matching rear storage curtains and a period correct Phillips Ten Transistor radio. Lancia B24S s/n 1640 is also all matching numbers, as confirmed by Lancia on the 08 July 2021 Lancia Classiche Certificato di Origine confirming a build date of 08 Sept., 1958 with body number 00639; engine number 1761; differential number 1323; front suspension number 474 and steering box number 1473. Today Lancia B24S s/n 1640 still carries all original identification plaques, auxiliary equipment and accessories and is complete with its rare and original Lancia jack, spare wheel and tool kit in its canvas tool roll
Officianados know the short wheel base 1950s Lancia B20 and late B24S models were named after a Roman road: the Via Aurelia, leading from Rome to Pisa; and were famed for their innovative engineering, incredible craftsmanship and engineer Vittorio Jano’s seemingly total disregard for cost accounting. Few cars of the 1950s are as innovatively engineered or built, powered by what is considered to be the world’s first production V6, which included hemispherical combustion chambers and both crankshaft and rod big end fitted with shell bearings which gave both more power and higher RPMs. To improve performance and weight distribution, the very late models such as Lancia B24S s/n 1640 featured a more powerful 2.5 liter engine plus a rear-mounted transaxle unit including clutch, inboard rear brakes. A de Dion rear suspension and a sliding pillar front suspension maintained a fixed camber on all four corners for very predictable handling. The Aurelia was also the first car to be fitted with radial tires as standard equipment which also much improved handling. The automotive press of the era marveled at the B24S’s refinement, exceptional build quality, and road holding. Highly capable and a joy to use, The Autocar magazine claimed that the Aurelia was “one of the most desirable sporting cars of the decade”.
The short wheel base Lancia B20 and late B24S models proved to be highly successful in competition, with the Aurelia’s most shocking race result at the 1951 Mille Miglia. Lancia entered four 2 liter Aurelias, with the car of Giovanni Bracco and Umberto Maglioli leaving the 2-liter competitors behind and quickly closing on the overall leaders, who were piloting cars with 50% to 100% more displacement. In the torrential rain, the 2.0 liter Aurelia closed to within five minutes on the leading 4.1 liter Ferrari 340 s/n 082A in the second to last leg alone, and was still closing at the end of the event, placing second overall! The Aurelia lost by 20 minutes in a 13 hour race, amply demonstrating the capability of both drivers and car. As an interesting aside, M. Sheehan of Ferraris-Online owned 1951 Ferrari 340 s/n 082A, the 1951 Mille Miglia winner, and raced s/n 082A in the 1987 Mille Miglia! Mike can vouch for the fact that the Aurelia is a much better handling car than the Ferrari 340, which contributed to its large success. Aurelia’s enjoyed countless other competition successes, including another class win at the Mille Miglia plus further class victories at the Le Mans 24-hours, Coppa d’Oro delle Dolomiti, Pescara 6-hours, Carrera Panamericana, the Targa Florio, and more.
The most sought after and beautiful variant of the Aurelia is the B24, an open car with a shorter wheelbase when compared to the closed variant, the B20. Late B24’s, such as this car, are fitted with a significantly more powerful 2.5 liter engine and were styled in two very striking forms by Pininfarina. The Spider, built in 1954-55, was less sophisticated, with side curtains, no exterior door handles and an American style wraparound panoramic windscreen, while the B24S Convertible were built in 1956-57-58 and had a 2.5 liter engine, one-piece chrome bumpers, a wider hood air-scoop; wind up windows, an improved seating position, a windscreen with vent windows, larger doors, a dashboard featuring an attractive pair of large gauges and the mechanical refinements associated with the fifth and sixth series B20’s.
Because Lancia B24S s/n B24S-1640 comes from an estate sale, much of it’s early history and restoration information is unknown. What is know is that Lancia B24S s/n 1640 is finished in an attractive and desirable color combination and is in very good cosmetic condition overall. The panel fit is excellent and the paintwork shows a very high standard with only a few chips in the front end from road use and a very minor dimple in the hood scoop. The chrome is excellent throughout, as are the glass and lights. Both the wheels and hubcaps are very nice as well, and the car sits on a set of Michelin 165 R 400 X radial tires. The hardtop has been nicely fitted to the car and the canvas top is in excellent shape and fits well. The red leather interior is near new and so extremely nice throughout. Indeed, the now-replaced original leather comes with the car. The carpets, dashboard and dashboard cover plus the door trims, all switches and the attractive dual large round instruments and steering wheel all present well.
The engine compartment is clean and correct throughout and the trunk is correct in appearance with quilted upholstery and rubber diamond pattern mat. This example drives superbly. The engine is amongst the finest that we have ever experienced in an Aurelia, and the transaxle is excellent. The brakes are excellent, and the car has none of the driveline vibration that is common to these cars. The balance between low weight, a short wheelbase, excellent handling and decent power reminds the driver why these cars are so sought after. Complete with the Lancia Classiche documentation, the rare Lancia jack, spare wheel and the tool kit in its canvas tool roll
Lancia B24S s/n B24S-1640 offers an outstanding opportunity to own one of Italy’s most collectable and user-friendly cars of the mid-late 1950s! Beautifully styled and engineered, the Aurelia B24S is a car that offers superb engineering and an excellent balance between power and handling. Where many other cars of the 1950s are crude and show signs of cutting costs and corners, the Aurelia impresses with its unfailing commitment to excellence in all respects, an uncompromising car that is at once sophisticated, sporting, and beautiful. Complete with its rare and original Lancia jack, spare wheel and tool kit in its canvas tool roll plus all the Lancia Classiche documents and a copy of the “Lancia and de Virgilio” book. A great event car that competed in the Mountain Mille (2016) and a winner of the Keels & Wheels Concours d’ Elegance. B24S s/n 1640 is a well sorted example that is both attractive and usable, an nicely restored and nicely presented high level driver ready for vintage touring events such as the California Mille, the Colorado grand, a top-down Sunday drive or your local Cars & Coffee.
S/n B24S s/n B24S-1640. Lancia B24S. Build date 08 Sept., 1958. Sold to to the USA. From new in PPG Grigio (Grey) Brillante with Pelle Rossa (Red) leather.
Body number 00639. Engine number 1761. Differential number 1323. Front suspension number 474. Steering box number 1473. Full chassis number B24S-1640 with engine number 1761. One of only 371 B24S Sixth Series Aurelia Convertibles built. Very rare original Factory hardtop. Black soft top with matching rear storage curtains
Period correct Phillips ten Transistor radio. Still carries the original identification plaques, auxiliary equipment and accessories
Fitted with a race and very desirable Nardi kit with a Nardi upper radiator pipe, twin Weber 40 DCL5 carbs with sequential numbers 1692 and 1693 mounted on a cast aluminum Nardi intake manifold topped off with a cast aluminum Nardi air cleaner. Also fitted with the Nardi floor shift conversion
2021, 08 July, confirmed matching numbers by Lancia Classiche.