Lot 231 - 1947 Allard K1 Roadster
|Odometer reading||9,721 miles|
|Estimate||£48,000 - £60,000|
|Result||Sold - £54,880|
Allard, much like Ferrari and Porsche, began as a phenomenon of the Automotive Renaissance - those exciting, innocent years immediately following World War II. All three marques were race-bred lines fostered by charismatic genius, and all three earned immediate respect on the road as well as on the track. If ever a motor manufacturer was an enthusiast, it was Britain's Sydney Allard. By 1929 he was racing a three-wheeled Morgan at Brooklands. But while Ferrari and Porsche pursued engineering and aesthetic finesse approaching artwork, Sydney Allard's approach was the antithesis. His cars were pure utilitarian machines - crude products of a single-minded effort to harness brute torque and horsepower and most effectively apply it to the road. Based from his family's garage, before World War II, he graduated to racing flathead Fords and then to building specials powered by both Ford V- and Lincoln V-12's. Postwar, the Allard Motor Company turned out a variety of sports and racing cars. Again, Ford and Mercury Flathead V-8's were the order of the day with his post-war line-up consisting of the K1 two-seat sports car, the J1 two-seat competition car, L four-seat touring car and M four-place drophead. In all cases, the V8 engine was mounted to a Ford three-speed manual transmission with a remote shifter, torque tube drive shaft and a British Ford solid rear axle. Front suspension was of the 'Bellamy' pattern; i.e. a Ford solid front axle modified into a swing axle independent suspension.
The car on offer is one of the 151 K1 Models built in Putney, South West London. Completed in 1947 and registered GRK 384, little is known of the early history of this motorcar except to note that it was abandoned, it is thought, in the 1970's in a field and left there for approximately 20 years before it was acquired by a Mr. John Aldridge, an architect and amateur racer from London in 1997. Appreciating the Allard marque for its performance potential, he set about breathing life back into it. John Simmons of Lowestoft were instructed to restore the body, with Nordian Exports of Leadon Roding re-building the engine. A period of racing, sprints and hill-climbs then ensued. It then moved into the hands of the current owner in 2007. Interestingly, the vendor of this extraordinary example has a mindset not unlike Sidney Allard in as much as there is a focused mind at play with one goal and no deviations. Unlike Sidney Allard though, it is not the quest for power and performance but that of quality workmanship, attention to detail and a thorough mechanical pursuit of zero tolerance derived from an engineer's critical eye.
BAS 120 now began a restoration process unlike any other. The car was de-constructed into its constituent parts and those parts restored or replaced if even the slighted imperfection was found. This included re-building the door handle mechanisms, complete drive train and every mechanical and electrical component in-between. The stainless steel exhaust was replaced with a better stainless steel exhaust and the rear axle ratio was changed from 4.11-1 to 3.25-1providing improved fuel economy and top speed without compromising the performance of the high torque engine. It now runs with a ¾ race cam and still retains the original three speed gearbox. The original cast iron heads have been swapped with improved aluminium Offenhauser units and the manifold mated to quad-barrel Holly carburettors instead of the previous two barrels. The aluminium radiator has 50% more capacity and the crankshaft, clutch, flywheel and pistons have all been dynamically balanced to give a smoother power delivery and overall performance. The attention to mechanical perfection (as well as the recent comprehensive service and oil change) would make Sidney Allard proud.
The exterior is equally immaculate with lustrous green coachwork and matching green leather interior. Full weather gear is included to make this prize-winning, fast road specification Allard one of finest on the planet.
There is very good, there is excellent and there is this one.
Previous lotLot 230 - 1964 Alvis TE21 Drophead Coupé
Interested parties should satisfy themselves as to the description and condition of each lot prior to the sale. Accordingly, buyers are on notice that each vehicle is offered ‘as is/as seen’ subject to the Terms and Conditions for the auction. Buyers are advised to inspect the vehicle in person or use a professional to carry out this service. Historics will not entertain disputes over descriptions.