1952 Allard J2X

A bold move for RM Sotheby's paid off with $228M in Monterey
Thursday, 18 August - Saturday, 20 August 2022
Sale Price
$500,000 - $750,000
Est. Range
20 August 2022
Sold Date
Lot Number
Competition restoration
RM Sotheby's
Auction House
Chassis no. 3146 Red with racing decals over brown leather. 331-cu Cadillac V-8, Edelbrock intake, 4-speed, painted wire wheels, Dunlop Racing tires, dual spares, side exhaust, engine-turned dash, aero screens.

Evaluation: Bought new with a 331 Cadillac by Roy Cherryhomes, who approached a young Carroll Shelby to drive it for him in regional SCCA events. Shelby won four out of five SCCA races entered, and finished 10th in it at a race in Buenos Aires. Unclear history after that, but restored in the 1970s with a Chrysler engine and restored again during the 2010s with another Cadillac unit. Signed by Shelby on the tail, and by Bob Bondurant and Allen Grant under the hood. In race car condition with cracks, chips, dings and dirt. There’s a sizable dent on the right rear fender. The mechanicals, though, are freshly and expensively restored, so this is a usable, thrilling vintage racer that is eligible for all sorts of events and has history with the man that went on to bigger and better things with V8-powered British roadsters.

Bottom Line: The auction room was buzzing with anticipation of the next lot—the Ferrari 410 S that would become the week’s biggest sale—so many likely failed to fully appreciate this Allard. Like that Ferrari, it has a tie to the lore of Carroll Shelby. And like Shelby’s own creation in the following decade, it’s a whole lotta engine. An Allard J2 or J2X (better weight distribution, more legroom) was one of the quickest cars you could take to the race track in the early 1950s, but they reportedly take real cajones to drive quickly. 

by Andrew Newton
28 August 2022

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