SOLD

1955 Arnolt MG

Stanley H. Arnolt was a Chicago entrepreneur with a penchant for foreign cars, a penchant which is probably responsible for his nickname, "Wacky." In 1952 he was captivated by an MG TD bodied by Bertone and quickly placed an order for a series of them, becoming Bertone's financial savior in the process. The little coupes could have been, were it not for their upright MG radiator grilles, small displacement Ferraris, Maserati’s or Fiat-based Abarth specials, all of which Bertone built during this time. Delicately proportioned with full envelope bodies, five-window greenhouses and a semi-fastback rear deck, the Arnolt-MGs were a delicious combination of British reliability and Italian design. Only 67 coupes are known to have been built. This example is one of the last built and was originally sold to jazz musician Maurice Stein. It was acquired from Stein's widow in Beverly Hills where it had spent its entire life by Gene Ponder who commissioned the superb nut-and-bolt restoration which distinguishes it today. Finished in deep blood red with matching leather upholstery, it has chrome wire wheels, blackwall bias ply tires, Marchal head and driving lights and a Shorrock supercharger with 7psi boost which raises the 1,250cc MG engine's output from a barely adequate 54hp to something like 75hp. The supercharger's longevity is enhanced by an AMPCO lubricator. Paint, chrome and upholstery are very high quality and the engine compartment, which features, in addition to the blower, polished aluminum valve and block side covers, has been restored and detailed to high standards. Very rare and extremely attractive, the Bertone-bodied Arnolt-MG is equally at home in gatherings of British, MG and Italian automobiles as well as being a fine example of mid-Fifties Italian custom coachbuilding and trimming. Some attribute the Arnolt-MG's body design to Nuccio Bertone, others to Giovanni Michellotti and still others to the master, Franco Scaglione. It is a credit to any of them as well as to the craftsmanship of Bertone's artisans and the vision of "Wacky" Arnolt.


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