Italy boasted a wealth of creative talent in the 1950s, not least in the motor industry, where Lancia and Alfa Romeo led the way with both their technical innovations and elegant designs.
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, the car found immediate success and was renowned for having the first series-production V6 engine, developed by Francesco de Virgilio. It was effectively the first production GT car.
Chassis number: B20-1833
Engine: 2.0-litre 6-cylinder, 60 degree vee, two overhead valves
Gearbox: 4-speed manual
Lancia unveiled the 2-door GT coupé B20 to great acclaim, with its shorter wheelbase and Pininfarina body, striking an elegant tone from the outset.
In its coupé form, the 2-litre B20 enjoyed immediate racing success, including second place on its debut in the 1951 Mille Miglia.
The Series II Aurelia B20 coupé arrived in 1952 with yet more 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 those uniquely shaped rear winds that make the car the most desirable of Aurelias for many.
This highly original Aurelia B20 Series II Berlinetta is one of just 731 produced and boasts a detailed history from its arrival in the UK in 1974, including an engine rebuild and two glass-out repaints.
The car has one of the most complete history files that we have ever seen and has been meticulously maintained by a well-respected UK Lancia owner.
Unsurprisingly, the car was judged best Aurelia at the Lancia Motor Club Aurelia 50th Anniversary Concours in 2000 and was also featured in ‘Aurelia In Detail’, published by Charles Herridge.
The Lancia Aurelia B20GT is a favourite at Sports Purpose.
It is a ground-breaking, innovative design which benefitted from a money-no-object design process in period. We are well acquainted with the history, processes and costs involved in maintaining these great cars to the exceptional level of authenticity and detail of this example.
The early, lighter cars with the live rear axle were the design favoured by the factory racing drivers and are a joy to drive. We are certain that this is as good an SII as you will find anywhere in the world.