Alvis TE 21 Drophead Coupe

Alvis began as a trademark for aluminum pistons made by Geoffrey de Freville and his company Aluminium Pistons, Ltd. in 1914. It was de Freville who devised the famous red triangle emblem that has graced all Alvis cars. An engine designed by de Freville gave rise to a car to be built around it, the first of which was on the road in 1920.

Like most British manufacturers, Alvis Limited emerged from World War II with cars of decidedly prewar characteristics. Not until 1950 did the new TA21 model arrive, a three-liter car with a short-stroke overhead valve six-cylinder engine. With twin SU carburetors, it developed 93 bhp. Two body styles were offered, a four-light saloon by Mulliners and a three-position drophead coupe by Tickford.

Tickford, Ltd. has been among the most successful of British coachbuilding companies. Originally Salmons & Son, the firm was founded for carriage-building at Newport Pagnell, Buckinghamshire in 1820. Body building for motorcars began in 1898. “Tickford” was a trademark for an all-weather, crank-down convertible top mechanism. By the late 1930s, this equipage had been discontinued, but the name was so well known that it was adopted for the company after the Salmons left in 1939. A descendant survives as Tickford Powertrain Test, a worldwide automotive engineering company.

This car was auctioned off by RM Auctions in January of 2010 at the Arizona Biltmore Resort & Spa, Phoenix, Arizona.

93 bhp, 2,993 cc overhead valve six-cylinder engine, four-speed manual transmission, independent coil spring front suspension, live rear axle with semi-elliptic leaf springs, four-wheel hydraulic drum brakes. Wheelbase: 111.5"

Source: RM Auctions

Gallery: Alvis TE 21 Drophead Coupe