A 1934 Lancia Astura from 1934 redesigned by motoring columnist Ronald ‘Steady’ Barker while he owned the car almost 60 years ago is making its public debut at the Autosport International show with a new body designed by 3D Engineers.
The car at present is nearing the end of an extensive restoration and with its new body added and complete except for details.
Our firm became involved in the project at the request of its current custodian and we were pleased to help, having read many of Ronald’s books and articles over the years and having met him in person previously. Many design issues had to be overcome during the process of getting the body created, but we all got there and the result is original, good looking and a credit to “Steady’s” original vision.
When “Steady” Barker bought the car, it was a six-seat limousine, but he modified the vehicle by cutting four feet cut from the the chassis and then adding his own bespoke lightweight, sports racing bodywork. Its most defining feature was its modified DB2 bonnet. He took this car to his interview for the position at Autocar and raced it in the 1950’s.
Wayne Kelham of Thornley Kelham – the restorers – said: ‘Our brief was to return the car to its original splendour. This has required a full restoration, including engine, suspension, gearbox and brakes. We are bringing the car back to life, including the fabrication of an all-aluminium body based on Steady’s sketches, turned into reality with the help of the latest technology, using the expertise of Stuart Brown of 3D Engineers.’
Steady Barker is looking forward to driving the car again. Having test driven the chassis in November last year he said ‘I ….. was happy with the way the car responded; I cannot wait to see it, completed in all but details, at Autosport International.’
Steady Barker is 94 in April and we look forward to seeing him drive the Steady Special at this time. A fitting tribute to someone who has engendered much goodwill with many people – including our firm and its owner Stuart Brown – over the years.