Pick of the Day: 1950 Allard K1/K2 powered by a flathead Mercury V8

The British roadster was a unique factory build combining two generations

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Allard
The Allard was special ordered by an American buyer

In all likelihood, Carroll Shelby was inspired to fit American V8s in lightweight British sports cars from his experience with Allards, which he drove competitively in the early 1950s, a decade before his team rolled out the iconic Cobra.

Sydney Allard, like Shelby, was a colorful racer and car builder, though in reserved British style compared with the wild-west personae of the Texas chicken farmer. Allard began building race cars before World War II powered by Ford V8s, then started up his own automaking company after the war.

Allard

The Pick of the Day is an unusual 1950 Allard K1/K2 roadster, a bespoke build by the London automaker for an American buyer who wanted the earlier K1 styling even though they were out of production, according to the Hilton, New York, dealer advertising the car on ClassicCars.com.

“Allard obliged, though the car was actually built on the superior coil-sprung K2 chassis, and fitted with specially made, backdated K1 bodywork,” the seller says in the ad.

Allard

The aluminum-bodied Allard is powered by a classic V8 engine of the period, which has been boosted in proper hot rod style.

“Under the hood is a 1947 Mercury 59A flathead V8 engine, rated in period at 85 hp, though now producing significantly more (probably closer to 200 hp) thanks to an overbore to 295 cubic inches, beautiful Edelbrock heads and a trio of Stromberg 97 carburetors,” the seller says. “An alternator has been fitted for reliable running day or night, and an electric fan keeps engine temps in check.”

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The Allard was used originally only through the end of the 1950s, the ad notes, when it was apparently disassembled and stored away, for whatever reason. It was finally sold in 1972 and the refurbishment begun shortly thereafter. 

“The Allard was gradually rebuilt over a 30-year period and, in 2003, was professionally restored to the state in which it presents today,” the seller says. “Finished in an attractive color scheme of silver paint over a pewter-grey cockpit, it presents in beautiful condition today. The quality of the paint work is outstanding with excellent levels of finish work and detailing.”

It certainly looks sweet in the photos with the ad, and the shots of the engine compartment are downright spine-tingling.  What a great Allard with a unique build and colorful history. 

The asking price is $150,000, for what’s essentially a cool hot rod with a British accent.  

To view this listing on ClassicCars.com, see Pick of the Day.

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Bob Golfen is a longtime automotive writer and editor, focusing on new vehicles, collector cars, car culture and the automotive lifestyle. He is the former automotive writer and editor for The Arizona Republic and SPEED.com, the website for the SPEED motorsports channel. He has written free-lance articles for a number of publications, including Autoweek, The New York Times and Barrett-Jackson auction catalogs. A collector car enthusiast with a wide range of knowledge about the old cars that we all love and desire, Bob enjoys tinkering with archaic machinery. His current obsession is a 1962 Porsche 356 Super coupe.

5 COMMENTS

  1. Nice,but I would much rather have a J2X with a 383″ Chev and a Tremec 5 speed. Can be had once in while on the net for around + or – $50,000. Blow your hair off!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. Bob Golfen,
    Your excellent writing of cars is enjoyed by many. Thanks for sharing. Although I like the Allard, if I didn’t, I wouldn’t respond to R. Walters, by writing that a J2x with a 383 Chev and Tremac 5 speed is a very poor car, but serves a limited purpose for unknowledgeable persons lacking funds or expertise. There’s nothing good about the J2x mentioned above, but I wouldn’t write disparaging words.
    Admittedly, I’m a Ferrari/Corvette/Ford person.
    Thanks to you for your excellent writing.

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