Written by Laura | 11th February 2020
With over 100 years experience building some of the most inspiring and influential cars to hit the road: Alfa Romeo is synonymous with the term classic car. But how do you sort the best from the very best? We asked classic cars expert Franco Vigorito to list his all-time favourite Alfa Romeo models.
Alfa Romeo 2000 Sportiva in Colle di Val d'Elsa, Tuscany
Although it never made it to production, the Sportiva is still considered to be one of the best sports cars built in the fifties. Alfa Romeo built the Sportiva model and paired it with an innovative design by Bertone's Franco Scaglione in an attempt to revive the company’s pre-war glory. The Sportiva boasts a pumped up version of the 1900 family saloon engine, making it reliable and fast. Designed for the road rather than the track, the build is quite small in order to stay competitive with cars such as the Mercedes-Benz SL300. It went on to inspire many future sports car designs.
Alfa Romeo is known for combining sex appeal and fun in their cars. The Stradale Prototipo is not only one of the most beautiful cars ever made, but the engineering capability makes it a force to be reckoned with. The car’s curvaceous design paired with the aluminium body wrapped around an aluminium tubular chassis make it extremely respected in racing circles. The famous butterfly doors and lightweight body of only 700kg mark this car out as an exceptional creation.
The Mille Miglia is one of the greatest classic cars ever created. Built in the 1930s with engineering expertise by the legend that is Vittorio Jano; this model was created to be a fast, supercharged and graceful machine. The car boasted a supercharged 2.9-litre inline-eight engine with 180 hp, able to run on both track and road. Ralph Lauren owned and loved this exact model as well. It was also an extremely versatile design, and different models with different engines were produced (both street and race versions).
Alfa Romeo Duetto Spider in Vigevano, Pavia
The Duetto Spider was created to pay homage to open-top driving, speed and presence on the road. The sleek Italian design combined with the lightweight build made this car stand out from the rest and assured its characteristic nimble nature on those country roads. Everything from the design to the sound and the feel contribute to the Duetto Spider reputation as one of the coolest cars on the road.
The Bertone Carabo is arguably one of the most radically designed Alfa Romeos ever built. The Bertone was originally based on the Alfa Type 33 Stradale chassis, however, there are not many other similarities. The famous designer Gandini implemented the striking wedge shaped lines which would alter the way modern day supercars are designed. This car promised the future and continued to inspire designers for decades, which is why it makes our list.
One of Alfa's futuristics cars: the curves of the C52 'Disco Volante' could easily be mistaken for a Jaguar E-type. Indeed, had its cash-strapped manufacturer not shelved the project in favour of other pursuits, it might have become Alfa’s magnum opus. The C52 was conceived during an unstable period for Alfa Romeo. While the company had just won the 1951 Formula 1 World Championship, Alfa had post-war cash shortages that led to its withdrawal from the competition.
The first prototype of the Giulietta SS was presented in 1957 at the Turin Motor Show. The Bertone was to be the replacement for the Giulietta SS, but it never made it into production, making it an unique model not often seen in today's world. The car is currently part of the Lopresto Collection and it recently proved how special it is by winning Best in Show and Best in Class at the 2017 Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este.
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