Monday, March 14, 2011

California Dreamin': 1974 Alfa Romeo Spider

If you've been paying attention to the collector car auctions in Arizona and Florida these past months, you may notice that this could very well be The Year Of The Alfa. Giuliettas are on the cusp of $100k, while Sprint Speciales and 1900 CSS are putting $150k in the rear view mirror.

Kinda makes these early Kamm-tail Spiders look like a hell of a deal.

While definitely not the same type of car as the earlier 101s, these entry-level hobby cars offer many of the same top-down visceral pleasures. Certainly the performance is comparable, and the once-maligned SPICA mechanical fuel injection is now clearly understood and optimized. Stock, early series Spiders such as this one can only go up in value.

There are many things I like about this car. I like white spiders for one. Alfa made a limited pallete of colors in these years, and this one is not often seen. I like the nicely refinished stock Turbina aluminum wheels- testimony to the Italians mastery of casting. Expensive updates include nicely redone seats, top and brakes. The underhood area seems to show some nice detailing to the 2 litre motor.

The seller shows some underbody photos that reveal an impossibly clean bottom for a 37 year old car. The car claims California heritage and seems to show it. I just love the stock steering wheel, stock Turbinas, and great stainless bumpers. The car even seems to have the original body moulding and radio antenna. It's so nice to see a car that has not been cut up for a stereo, dropped with lower springs or updated with 5-Star Cromodora wheels. Clearly this car was loved and sympathetically maintained- just the way you like to buy them.
I'l be watching this auction. My best guess is that this is a good buy anywhere south of $9500.

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