Million-Dollar '56 Lancia Aurelia for Auction

Classic Cars

Rare and hugely desirable B24S America Spider part of RM Auctions' consignments for Arizona in January.

Think of the most desirable Italian marques and their finest automobiles. Names like Ferrari, Maserati, Lamborghini and Pagani come to mind. Would you be willing to pay a million bucks (if you had it to spend) on one? Maybe, just maybe. Maybe even on an Alfa Romeo, like the 1934 Tipo B that Christie's sold in 1985 for nearly $2.8 million, or over six million after adjusting for inflation. But a Lancia? Lancia today might sell hatchbacks and rebadged Chryslers, but back in its heyday it was another story altogether.

Back in its heyday, Lancia made cars like the Aurelia. And this particular example is expected to nudge the million-dollar mark when it hits the auction block next month. Made in the 1950s, the Aurelia was the first production car to use a V6 engine. It was offered as a sedan, a two-door coupe and a convertible. This example - chassis B24S-1131 - is a rare America Spider, regarded as the most desirable post-war Lancia made. RM has yet to release information on its provenance, but estimates it will sell for between $800,000 and $1 million when it hits the auction block on January 18 at the Arizona Biltmore.

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