1955 Lancia Aurelia

B24 Spider


  • Year of manufacture 
  • Car type 
    Convertible / Roadster
  • Chassis number 
  • Engine number 
  • Drive 
  • Condition 
  • Interior colour 
  • Interior type 
  • Number of doors 
  • Number of seats 
  • Location
  • Exterior colour 
  • Gearbox 
  • Drivetrain 
  • Fuel type 


A superb second place finish for Giovanni Bracco and Umberto Maglioli on the 1951 Mille Miglia driving the new Lancia Aurelia B20 GT and beaten only by a 4.1-litre Ferrari 340 America Berlinetta, was a great start to the 1950’s for Lancia. Lancia B20 GTs would continue to compete with great success throughout much of the 1950s.

The V6 powered, unitary constructed, B20 GT was built in six series and for many, it was the fourth-series cars, benefitting from increased engine capacity of 2451cc, new heads, a new block, competition-spec camshafts and improved handling thanks to a de Dion rear suspension set-up with semi-elliptic leaf springs, that stand-out as the all-round best of the bunch. It was on the proven platform of the B20 GT fourth series that in 1955 one of Pininfarina’s most glamorous and beautiful designs was born – the B24 Spider. Making its first public appearance at the 1955 Brussels Motor Show, Lancia’s new Spider had been blessed with movie-star good looks and performance to match. It was clearly aimed at attracting the American buyer and later it would gain the Spider “America” moniker. The sublime Pininfarina styling was exquisite and extremely original, from the classic Lancia shield grille accentuated by distinctive dual split-wing bumperettes at the front, the curved panoramic windscreen reminiscent of that other 1950’s icon, the Riva motor boat, the central “Spider” cockpit with gently curved doors and clip-on side-screens, the purposeful bonnet bulge and the perfect proportions. If any car was going to attract the attention of the effortlessly chic 1950’s Jet-Set, Lancia’s new B24 Spider was it! But the new B24 was by no means an exercise in style over substance, far from it, the new Spider had been engineered around the already race proven B20 GT shortened chassis, the compact, all-aluminium, 2.4 litre V6, four-wheel hydraulic drum-brakes mounted inboard at the rear, sophisticated four-speed transaxle and fully independent suspension, a package that was to give the B24 the well-balanced high performance of a true thoroughbred. However, there is always room for the odd upgrade package and while all B24 cars already had a floor gear change, Lancia gave customers the option of an upgrade kit by Nardi which included extra energy from twin carburettors. The B24 Spider was produced for just one year (1955) and a mere 240 examples were built, of which 59 were right-hand drive.

This particular B24 Spider was originally delivered as presented today, sporting red paintwork with tan upholstery and RHD configuration as confirmed by Aurelia historian Francesco Gandolfi. Formerly owned by Carla Liverani, who had inherited it from her brother it then passed to Fabrizio Verzaro before finding its way into the skilled hands of the well-known restorer of B24 Spiders, Giancarlo Kappa. During the comprehensive restoration Kappa sought to emulate a well-known rally example of the B24 Spider (B24-1021). He elected to include additional front fog lamps and to install supportive Ferrari seats in place of the original Lancia items. He also designed-in a revised dash layout and Jaeger instruments, including a tachometer. As a passionate B24 authority Kappa had the experience and knowledge of the model to have made these enhancements knowing firstly that they were reversible, but also that they were based on modifications made to other B24’s in period and would further improve the overall driving experience. Some, however, may prefer to remain 100% true to originality and therefore, included in the sale are the original Lancia seat-frames as well as a complete set of correct, rare, original equipment instruments.

Purchased by the current owner in 2014 this beautiful B24 Spider has benefitted from a series of maintenance works at renowned Lancia specialists, Thornley Kelham. Works undertaken included taking the underneath back to bare-metal and re-finishing it, a new exhaust system, rebuilding of the transaxle, suspension and brakes, a new clutch and a new front windscreen. This beautiful example of Lancia’s B24 Spider also benefits from being fitted with an original Nardi carburettor kit and specialists at Thornley Kelham have commented that it is “the fastest Spider we have ever driven”. According to the original data card supplied by Registro Aurelia, all numbers match from the body numbers to the engine and the differential, a copy of the card is included in the file, along with copies of older Italian registration documents, FIVA Identity Card and Certificato di Identita from the Automotoclub Storico Italiano.

Charming, striking and quintessentially Italian, the B24 is one of the most beautiful of all Spiders and a motor car that encapsulates the lifestyle and care-free glamour of the mid-1950’s in Italy, as well, if not better, than any other.

Photos: Tim Scott