1952 Cisitalia Speciale"Cisitalia" Special
Year of manufacture1952
- Known as the “lost” Mickey Thompson/Bill Burke MG “Cisitalia” special
- The only Allied roadster known to have been produced for an MG TD chassis
- Rediscovered in 2006; subsequently purchased by the consignor and completed to a very high standard for vintage racing
- Uses MG chassis, 1,496 cc MG TF engine, and TD transmission; fitted with an Austin-Healey windshield, Brooklands-style windscreens, and NOS Borrani wire wheels
- Discovery and restoration documented by Geoff Hacker at Undiscovered Classics
According to legend, automotive publishing magnate Bob Petersen acquired a new 1946 Cisitalia 202 Coupe and, after bringing it back to California, sent it to the shop of George Barris for a new paint job. “Belly tanker” racer Bill Burke and speed equipment provider Mickey Thompson saw the car and, inspired, somehow managed to make a plaster mold of it (apparently with Petersen being none the wiser).
Subsequently, high-quality fiberglass Cisitalia-style bodies, available in multiple lengths to suit multiple readily available chassis, were put into small-scale production under the name Atlas, and later Allied. These were typically sold out of the back of enthusiast magazines; many were fit to MG T-series chassis, with the British underpinnings and running gear serving as ideal blank canvases for these Italian-inspired projects.
This example, the only Allied roadster known to have been produced for use on an MG TD chassis, was discovered in a partially complete state in Illinois in 2006. It was subsequently acquired by the consignor and restored to its present state with vintage racing in mind; it made its debut at the 2014 Watkins Glen Vintage Grand Prix Festival.
Of the relatively few Allied projects of any sort completed in-period, few if any could boast such a high degree of fit and finish: It has exotic, Italian-inspired looks, but it remains true to its British underpinnings with an Austin-Healey 100 folding windshield backed by a pair of Brooklands-style windscreens. New-old-stock 60-spoke Borrani knock-off wire wheels with MG spinners complete its exterior appearance.
Mechanically, its race-equipped 1,496-cubic-centimenter MG TF inline-four—fitted with a Laystall aluminum head and larger, 1 ½-inch SU carburetors and mated to a TD transmission—make it an ideal, and practical, candidate for continued vintage competition. Aluminum floor pans and door panels speak to the quality of fabrication found throughout, while seven roll bars, essentially safety items required for racing, are incorporated into the build.
The discovery of this unique car, its restoration, and its eventual show debut were extensively documented by Geoff Hacker on Forgotten Fiberglass/Undiscovered Classics (undiscoveredclassics.com), the leading historical resource for American hand-built sports cars and specials. Accompanied by extra MG parts, a racing uniform, set of six additional racing wheels, and a Recaro racing seat swappable for the road car seat presently fitted, this MG special would be a perfect complement to any paddock of vintage racers or field of show cars.
To view this car and others currently consigned to this auction, please visit the RM website at rmsothebys.com/en/auctions/hf21.