Sports & Classics of Monterey

12-14 August 2010


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Lot 111

1950 Ford Italmeccanica IT160 Coupe

  • Chassis no. 496252024

Sold for $143,000

Ford Flathead V8 engine with two-bbl carburetor, three-speed column-mounted manual transmission, Dubonnet type independent front suspension, longitudinal leaf spring rear suspension and solid rear axle, four-wheel mechanical drum brakes.

- From the collection of Clyde Ensor, Sr.

- Possible Preservation Class or HPOF contender

- Italian styling with Ford mechanicals

- Unique vehicle, one of two known to be produced

The December 1952 issue of Speed Age featured on its cover what was described as the “World’s Most Exclusive Automobile.” Readers were treated to four pages of details on the prototype of a forthcoming vehicle to be produced by Italmeccanica of Torino, Italy. The author, Richard Adams, also one of the investors in the concept, notes, “We sought to manufacture a sports car combining the chassis, suspension, and luxurious body of European cars with the ease of maintenance and simplicity of the best American models. The IT160 is designed to take its place among the best American and foreign automobiles for speed and performance, but it may also be driven into an American garage and left with the simple instructions, ‘Fix it!’”

Using a tubular chassis and simple suspension components, a modified Cadillac engine was fitted to the prototype while this example has a Ford “Flathead” V8. The aluminum body is credited to the coachbuilding firm of Stabilimenti Farina, with total vehicle weight claimed slightly in excess of 2,450 pounds. Performance with the Cadillac engine was estimated to have a top speed of 140 mph and a 0-60 mph time of 10 seconds – quite heady for 1950.

Little else is known about this unique and stylish vehicle. Painted a metallic red/copper with red vinyl and ivory cloth interior and tan headliner, the car is believed to be mostly original with upgrades as-needed. The chrome presents nicely as does the paint with few imperfections. The engine bay appears as original, and the car rides on period-correct bias-ply tires. Inside, the dash has Brevettato gauges including tachometer and speedometer. It is also equipped with an AM radio and a wire-bound two-spoke steering wheel.

Simple Ford mechanicals make this Italian-American hybrid reasonable to repair and maintain. From the collection of noted Ford enthusiast Clyde Ensor, Sr., its uniqueness and limited production will certainly raise eyebrows at any vintage car show or concours. And, its highly original condition makes it a strong contender in any HPOF or survivor class in which it will compete.

Please contact our exclusive automotive transportation partner, Reliable Carriers, for a shipping quote or any other information on the transport of this vehicle.

Alexander Weaver

+1 864 313 6844
California, United States

Alexander Weaver joined RM Sotheby’s in 2011 as a Car Specialist after graduating from Furman University in South Carolina. Born... read more

Augustin Sabatié-Garat

+44 (0) 74 1511 4179
United Kingdom

Augustin Sabatié-Garat joined RM Europe in 2012 as a Car Specialist after more than a decade in the collector car hobby. Gradua... read more

Barney Ruprecht

+1 203 912 7168
Ontario, Canada

Barney’s interest in classic cars began at an early age after being introduced to his father’s all-original 1965 Porsche 911. Barney l... read more

David Swig

+1 415 302 2247
California, United States

David Swig joined RM Sotheby’s West Coast division as a Car Specialist in May 2015. David is a life-long automobile enthusi... read more

Don Rose

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United States

Don joined RM in 2006 after several years of professionally trading sports and classic cars, and after earning a reputation as a noted... read more

Donnie Gould

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Florida, United States

Donnie Gould joined the RM team in 2002 as a partner and Car Specialist after more than two decades in the vintage automobile auction ... read more

Gord Duff

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Ontario, Canada

Gord Duff began his journey with RM Sotheby’s in 1998. Since then, he has gained an intimate knowledge of a variety of marques a... read more

Jake Auerbach

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California, United States

Jake Auerbach got his start in the automotive industry at an early age, spending his summers during high school working at a classic c... read more

Kurt Forry

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California, United States

Having worked for Bonhams’ Automobilia department for over 10 years, Kurt Forry joined RM Sotheby’s with more than a decad... read more

Matt Malamut

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California, United States

A long-time car enthusiast and Southern California native, Matt studied Automotive Technology at San Diego Miramar College and complet... read more

Michael Squire

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United Kingdom

Michael Squire joined RM Sotheby’s European Division in the summer of 2016. He comes to RM with a prestigious racing background ... read more

Mike Fairbairn

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Ontario, Canada

As one of the three founding partners of RM Sotheby’s, Mike has a long-standing interest in the classic car industry. Graduating... read more

Oliver Camelin

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United Kingdom

With an extensive background in exotic sports car history and sales, a particular passion for American curves, and fluency in three la... read more

Paul Darvill

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United Kingdom

Paul Darvill joined the RM Sotheby’s European team at the beginning of 2015. Paul holds a degree in French and Politics from the... read more

Pete Fisher

+1 519 784 9300
Ontario, Canada

Pete Fisher was first introduced to antique cars in high school, working for Classic Coachworks in his hometown of Blenheim, Ontario. ... read more

Shelby Myers

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Shelby Myers grew up with the classic car industry infused into every aspect of his life. He had the unique opportunity to watch the R... read more

Tonnie Van der Velden

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United Kingdom

Tonnie Van der Velden joined RM Sotheby’s European division in September 2015 as a Car Specialist. A lifelong enthusiast, Tonnie... read more