1937 Lancia ApriliaArdennes Pourtout
Year of manufacture1937
1937 LANCIA ARDENNES POURTOUT
Serial number F 393156
Rare coupe bodywork
French collector's registration
A replacement for the Augusta, the Aprilia was launched in 1937 and benefited from the success of its big sister in the early years of its production. A top-of-the-range saloon, it was also technically revolutionary, adopting an aerodynamic body, front doors without a central pillar and an aluminium engine block with 4 V-shaped cylinders and 47 horsepower.
Its handling and comfort are enhanced by the adoption of a 4-wheel independent suspension system, often modified to suit the wishes of Vincenzo Lancia, who was keen to make this a perfect machine.
Italian in nature, the Aprilia would be manufactured in France due to customs duties that were too high for Italy. For this reason, it officially changed its name in France to "Ardennes", but despite all its qualities, it did not find its public in France, which preferred the Citroën Traction, which was less expensive and more robust than its competitor.
The death of Vincenzo Lancia in 1937 and the start of the Second World War brought production of the model to an abrupt halt. Just under 20,000 units were sold before the conflict and around 10,000 units from 1946 to 1949, when production came to a complete stop.
If the saloon was sold with a factory body in France as well as in Italy, the brand also offered bare chassis with engine to allow customers concerned about their originality to call upon independent coachbuilders to build the body of their Aprilia.
Discovered by the first owner in the 1990s, this Aprilia was basically a simple chassis on which a body designed by Pourtout was affixed. Although Pourtout was already making convertibles on the Ardennes model (32 in total), only one coupe is recorded by the coachbuilder. A unique model, this coach is in a beautiful aesthetic state with its new red paint and its glossy brown skai interior. A true rarity, this car was exhibited during the Art et Elegance competition at the Château de Chantilly in 2017 where the coachbuilder was honoured.
Very modern and beautifully designed, this coupe model has all the advantages of the Aprilia with a unique bodywork