The Silverstone Classic Sale 2017

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1963 Alfa Romeo Giulia 1600 'Sprint Speciale' by Bertone

Lot No.: 445

Registration: EU Registered NOVA Issued
Chassis Number: AR101.21380303
Engine Number: AR0012100384
Number of cylinders: 4
CC: 1570
Year of Manufacture: 1963
Sold for (£): Unsold

Launched in 1957, the Sprint Speciale was a stunning design unmistakably derived from the legendary Berlina Aerodinamica Tecnica, or B.A.T., show cars created by Carrozzeria Bertone in the mid-1950s. Those aerodynamic studies offered lots of design solutions when Alfa were considering a competition version of the Bertone-bodied Giulietta Sprint Veloce. With its extremely low drag coefficient of 0.29, the SS was aimed at motorsport, and a limited number were produced to meet FIA Homologation rules. The Speciale utilised the lightweight construction that had been so effective in the chassis design of the popular Giulietta Spider, and the coachwork was undoubtedly distinctive with its domed roofline and rounded wings. 

The Giulietta’s willing little 1,300cc, all-alloy, four-cylinder engine provided enough power to push the svelte two-seater coupé to almost 120 mph, which was considerably more than its conventionally bodied Sprint coupé and Spider siblings could achieve. When the 101 Series Giulia was introduced in 1962, it was powered by a 116 bhp, 1,570cc DOHC in-line, four-cylinder engine with a Weber DCOE carburettor mated to a five-speed manual transmission, and the Sprint Speciale inherited the engine, the gearbox, and the Giulia name. The pure aerodynamics applied to the design resulted in the Sprint Speciale having very low wind noise at high speeds and a top speed of over 125mph.  

The example offered here is from the first year of Giulia SS production. It was built on 1 October 1963, finished in the traditional Alfa Romeo Red, and just six days later, on the 7th, it was sold to the Alfa Romeo dealer in Brussels. The car is believed to have resided in Belgium for the majority of its subsequent life and it was there that it was discovered in 2006 by a previous owner. Though finished in blue with a white nose and stripe, the original colour was evident beneath the trim pieces as well as in the interior. When acquired by a later owner in 2013 the decision was taken to return the car to top form, and the SS was then subject to a comprehensive restoration beginning in 2014 and recently completed. Restored to its original colour and trimmed with matching red carpeting and two-tone red and white seats, the Alfa has also been fitted with a correct-type 1600 engine. Further photos of the car as discovered, as well as its restoration, are in the car's ownership file along with its EU Registration and NOVA details.

This is a lovely example of a rare car (1 of 1,339 worldwide). The restoration looks excellent with a sufficient number of gently patinated controls etc. to stop it becoming a trailer queen and encouraging it to be driven, after all, it is an Alfa!

These are pleasurable and rewarding drivers' cars with light controls and spirited competition-derived handling. Very few classics have this ability to tour so effortlessly, efficiently and in such style!