1953 ASTON MARTIN DB2/4 BERTONE SPYDER

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1 1953 ASTON MARTIN DB2/4 BERTONE SPYDER Year: 1953 Body Style: Roadster Configuration: LHD Engine: 3000 cc Price: SOLD 1953 Arnolt-Aston Martin DB2/4 Bertone Spyder LHD

2 This Arnolt-Aston Martin is an exceedingly rare motorcar being one of the first six original DB2/4 LHD chassis that were fitted with special bodies crafted by Bertone in Turin and then imported to the US by industrialist and car dealer S.H. Arnolt. Amongst this very limited run of Arnolt-Aston Martins, Chassis LML 505 is even rarer being one of just three spyders and the only one built to deluxe road-going specification. S.H. Arnolt was a well-known industrialist from Illinois who began to import British sports cars just after the Second World War. By the early 1950s Arnolt had identified the potential to combine the best of British engineering with Italian styling and American sales and distribution networks to create a quick, stylish and profitable sportscar that would meet the growing demand for such cars from an eager American public. Arnolt s first forays with this approach were highly promising and involved Italian coachbuilder Nuccio Bertone and the British Motor Corporation Ltd, who supplied Bertone with the MG TD chassis and together they sold 100 examples of the Arnolt-MG during 1952 and Unfortunately this initial success was not to last and by October of that year BMC had discontinued production of the MG TD and decided not to supply any of the new MG TF chassis to third parties. Undaunted Arnolt used his growing relationship with David Brown of Aston Martin to acquire six chassis of the new DB2/4, which were dispatched to Bertone to be fitted with their bespoke Scaglione-designed bodies. Of these first six chassis (two more would be produced after the initial production run) three were built as cabriolets and three as spyders, with two of the latter completed as stripped out racers and one being completed as a deluxe road-going version. The car offered here is the unique deluxe spyder and is differentiated in being the only one fully equipped with bumpers, side screens, complete radiator grill, full height windscreen and fold away hood. The car was completed in late 1953 and as a result the original 2.6 Litre engine was replaced by a newer 3.0 Litre unit at the factory before being shipped to Italy. From Bertone s workshops in Turin it then passed via Genoa to the RMS Britannic which transported it to the US and upon arrival it was used as the New York show car in January of It is probable that it was finished to deluxe specification due to its role as a show car and with a view to impressing David Brown who was known to be attending the show. Sadly, and despite these extra efforts, it seems that Brown was not convinced and Arnolt s hopes of extending the run of Arnolt-Aston Martins were dashed. After completing just two additional examples to the first series, the project was discontinued by January 1955 and Arnolt pursued other British manufacturers, notably Bristol Cars, with whom he and Bertone enjoyed considerably more success. After its use as a show car, Chassis LML 505 was sold to its first customer, a Mr Leonard W Jarosz of Detroit Michigan, on April 8th 1954 who kept it for a few years before selling it on to a Mr Schwambauer of Wichita, Kansas. By 1958 the car had moved to a more amenable climate when it was purchased by C S Wallen, a US Airforce Captain, based in Arizona. Over the next 20 years the car would have only a small number of new owners and only limited use such that by the later-1970s it had only clocked up 64,000 miles and remained highly original. Following an initial restoration in the US the car subsequently found its way to a collection in Switzerland and finally returned to the UK in the 1990s where it formed part of a well-known collection for a number of years before being subject to a full bare metal restoration that was completed in During this work the originality of the car was clearly evident with no signs of accident damage and most of the original chassis and steel bodywork being well preserved, probably due to its limited number of owners, long residence in Arizona and periods of extended storage. Importantly the car retained the 3.0 Litre engine fitted in the factory along with its original gearbox. At this time it was repainted by Bodylines in a metallic blue that matched small areas of original paint discovered in the restoration. The quality of the work was underlined by a victory in the AMOC Woburn Abbey Concours immediately post-restoration. Recently acquired by JD Classics, this exceptionally rare motor car remains in excellent and highly original condition and presents wonderfully in its Chichester Blue paint with Blue interior. With Mille Miglia eligibility, full matching numbers and

3 accompanied by many historical articles and numerous detailed photographs outlining its restoration it has an incredible provenance and provides a very special opportunity to own a unique part of Aston Martin s Heritage. Please contact us for further details. SOLD.

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