1955 Lancia Aurelia B24 S Spider America

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This car is among the rare survivors, having resided for its entire life in the forgiving western United States. In 1992, it was owned by the president of the U.S. Lancia club, who also was an avid vintage racer. He had the car cosmetically restored by Italian Lancia expert Franco dePiero, and his full-time mechanic restored the car’s numbers-matching drivetrain. During the restoration, the original Weber carburetor was replaced with a period-correct Nardi twin-carburetor conversion setup — which, along with the Borrani center-lock wire wheels and the signature Nardi steering wheel, completes the highly desirable Nardi package. Today, this remarkable Spider remains in high-point condition, a testimonial to both the quality of the car before restoration — and the caliber of the restoration itself.

Only minor evidence of aging can be found upon close examination, but with careful use, the car will mellow gracefully, gradually acquiring the patina of a lovely, untouched original. 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 make them not only eligible for, but ideal candidates to participate in, any important driving event worldwide. They are seldom, if ever, offered. Within the U.S, only a handful survive of this quality.

Lancia Aurelia B24 S Spider America 1123

In summer 1956, John Jang walked into British Motor Car Distributors, his favorite sports-car dealership, on Van Ness Avenue in San Francisco. The car was tilted sideways at a high angle, with mirrors placed underneath to show the B24’s innovative inboard rear brakes and distinctive suspension design.

Fascinated, Mr. Jang asked that the car be taken down for a test drive. The drive went so well that he traded his $3,000 1953 Porsche Cabriolet, which he had bought only a month before, toward the purchase of the $5,600 Lancia and drove it home to Oakland.

His red Lancia was still in his Northern California garage 56 years later.

In 1963, the young couple moved from the Bay Area to Sacramento; the Lancia Aurelia made the move to the new house but was never driven again. A padlock was placed on the wooden overhead garage door, and the Aurelia was kept under a cover for the next 49 years. In December 2012, the Jangs made the decision to sell the red Spider America, asking a trusted family friend to assist them in bringing it to market. The Jangs’ Spider America showed just over 28,000 original miles at the time of cataloging. The original gray leather interior is dry but mostly intact. The engine turns over freely in its dusty compartment and appears absolutely complete and original. The electrical system functions as it did in period, numerous factory markings have been found, and the entire car presents as only an undisturbed, low-mileage car can. The rare Plexiglas removable side windows were found stored along with the original tools, jack and spare wheel. The original rearview mirror and even the headlight rings, which have not been mounted on the car in over 50 years, were found in the lower recesses of the trunk.