Originally known for producing some of the world’s finest firearms, Austrian manufacturer Steyr diversified into automobile production in 1915. The company introduced the streamlined 120 with a 1.4-liter, side-valve, six-cylinder engine in 1935, predecessor to the model featured here. The 220 was born in 1937 when a more powerful inline six-cylinder overhead-valve engine arrived with capacity increased significantly to 2.3 liters.
The sleek, aerodynamic design was available in four body styles: five-passenger limousine, five-passenger cabriolet, and two different specially bodied cabriolets—both by Gläser Coachworks of Dresden, Germany—including this sporting example. The streamlined front fascia and steeply sloped grille are highly reminiscent of Alfa Romeo and Lancia models during that period, giving this car a unique and memorable presence.
Story by RM Sotheby’s