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Restored Alfa Romeo Montreal returns to auction

AN exemplary 1972 Alfa Romeo Montreal, previously sold by Silverstone Auctions in 2013, has emerged from a recent £28,000 restoration and will be offered for sale by Classic Car Auctions (CCA) at the Practical Classics Classic Car and Restoration Show with Discovery on Saturday and Sunday March 24-25.

Having undergone a number of performance and restorative upgrades over the years, the stylish two-seater Italian classic is possibly one of the best examples of the model in the world, of which just 64 are thought to exist today in the UK.

This particular left-hand drive version was manufactured on October 14, 1972, and sold new to its first owner three days later by Alfa Romeo Brussels. It was imported into the UK in 1989 and has had just four owners in its lifetime.

Originally finished in Luci del Bosco Metallizato, the Montreal features a number of stylish design cues, including four front headlamps with ‘eyelids’, NACA bonnet duct and cosmetic cabin vents, as well as a punchy 2.6L V8 engine and five-speed ZF manual gearbox.

The car was later treated to multiple upgrades including new steering and suspension joints, an uprated radiator with two fans, adjustable top arm front suspension, new Bilstein shock absorbers, a ‘Classic Alfa’ handling kit, uprated four pot front brake callipers, new front discs, new clutch plate and full stainless steel exhaust.

More recently the car has had the injection system replaced by four carburettors as well as a new windscreen, new carpets, rebuilt seats and a bare metal respray in gleaming Alfa Rosso with the addition of silver Campagnolo wheels.

Offered for sale at the Silverstone Classic 2013, the car now returns for auction with the younger sister company with an estimate of £50,000 to £55,000.

“The Montreal is rapidly becoming one of the most famous and desirable Italian sports cars of its decade, and this particular example is in stunning order,” said Richard Greenhalgh, classic car specialist, CCA. “It’s not unusual to see classics return to auction, but this particular transformation has been very successful.”

Documents, invoices and a photographic record of the restoration are included in the car’s history file.

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Alfa Romeo returns to Formula 1

ALFA ROMEO has signed a multi-year technical and commercial partnership agreement with Swiss Sauber F1 Team for participation in the Formula 1 world championship beginning with the 2018 season.

The single-seaters will sport the distinctive colors and logo of Alfa Romeo, the team’s title sponsor, and will be equipped with 2018 Ferrari power units.

The scope of the agreement includes strategic, commercial and technological co-operation in all applicable areas of development, including access to engineering know-how and the expertise of Alfa Romeo technical staff. This partnership will provide additional opportunities for the two organisations in both Formula 1 and the automotive sector in general.

The official name will be Alfa Romeo Sauber F1 Team.

Sergio Marchionne, CEO of FCA, said: “This agreement with the Sauber F1 Team is a significant step in the reshaping of the Alfa Romeo brand, which will return to Formula 1 after an absence of more than 30 years. A storied marque that has helped make the history of this sport, Alfa Romeo will join other major automakers that participate in Formula 1.

“The brand itself will also benefit from the sharing of technology and strategic know-how with a partner of the Sauber F1 Team’s undisputed experience. The Alfa Romeo engineers and technicians, who have already demonstrated their capabilities with the newly-launched models, Giulia and Stelvio, will have the opportunity to make that experience available to the Sauber F1 Team.

“At the same time, Alfa Romeo fans will once again have the opportunity to support an automaker that is determined to begin writing an exciting new chapter in its unique, legendary sporting history.”

Pascal Picci, Chairman of Sauber Holding AG, said: “We are very pleased to welcome Alfa Romeo to the Sauber F1 Team. Alfa Romeo has a long history of success in Grand Prix racing, and we are very proud that this internationally renowned company has chosen to work with us for its return to the pinnacle of motorsport.

“Working closely with a car manufacturer is a great opportunity for the Sauber Group to further develop its technology and engineering projects. We are confident that together we can bring the Alfa Romeo Sauber F1 Team great success, and look forward to a long and successful partnership.”

The return of Alfa Romeo, one of the major protagonists in Formula 1 history, is expected to contribute significantly to the appeal and future development of the sport. Alfa Romeo brings with it technological know-how and a large and passionate fan base, while participation in the championship also offers benefits for the brand in areas such as technology transfer and road safety.

Alfa Romeo is known around the world for its racing heritage and technological excellence. The undisputed champion of the pre-war Grand Prix (in 1925, the GP Tipo 2 dominated the first World Championship), Alfa Romeo participated in Formula 1 from 1950 to 1988, both as a constructor and engine supplier.

Immediately upon its debut, Alfa Romeo won the first two drivers’ world championships, in 1950 and 1951, with drivers Nino Farina and Juan Manuel Fangio. From 1961 to 1979, Alfa Romeo participated as engine supplier to several F1 teams.

Following its return as a constructor in 1979, Alfa Romeo achieved its best result in 1983, taking sixth place in the constructors’ championship. More than 30 years after withdrawing as a competitor from Formula 1 (1985), the brand is returning with the clear intention to make its mark.

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Giulia at the double at the Irish Awards

THE Alfa Romeo Giulia has picked up two awards at 41st annual Irish Car of the Year Awards 2018.

In one of the most competitive categories, the Alfa Romeo Giulia (above) took home the gong for the Irish ‘Medium Car’ category.

The Giulia Quadrifoglio (below) also topped the ‘Performance Car’ category, testament that Alfa Romeo has remained true to its heritage and is still producing the best driver’s cars on sale today.

This year’s awards were sponsored by Continental Tyres and decided by a jury of 30 of the Irish media’s most influential online, broadcast and print journalists.

Paul Hunt, Managing Director FCA Ireland, commented: “For the entire Giulia range to be lauded at the most prestigious awards in the Irish calendar is really humbling. The jury have recognised the passion and dedication that has been gone into making the Giulia and has made it into a car that can be chosen with both the head and the heart.”

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The new Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio

THE Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio, the first Quadrifoglio SUV, is set to become the new benchmark in the premium compact SUV segment.

With its awe-inspiring design, performance and technology, the Stelvio Quadrifoglio is the “fastest SUV around the circuit”, having clocked the new record for its class on the iconic Nürburgring: 7 minutes 51.7 seconds.

The Stelvio Quadrifoglio is equipped with the exclusive aluminium 2.9-litre V6 Bi-Turbo petrol engine, developed with inputs and engineering know-how from Ferrari technologies.

It delivers maximum power of 510hp at 6,500rpm and generates a maximum torque of 600Nm from 2,500 to 5,000rpm and is teamed with the specifically calibrated eight-speed automatic transmission, that shifts gear in just 150 milliseconds in Race mode.  The Stelvio Quadrifoglio can accelerate from zero to 62mph in just 3.8 seconds, and on to a best-in-class top speed of 176mph.

The car will arrive in the UK in summer 2018, with pricing and specification to be confirmed nearer the time.

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Stelvio Quadrifoglio sets Nurburgring record

THE Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio has set the new benchmark for a production SUV at Germany’s legendary Nürburgring circuit, lapping the epic 12.9-mile Nordschleife in a record 7 minutes 51.7 seconds.

This new time is a full eight seconds faster than the previous production SUV record.

Italian driver Fabio Francia set the blistering lap record, the same driver who previously set the fastest Nürburgring track record for four-door saloons in the Giulia Quadrifoglio with a lap time of just 7 minutes and 32 seconds.

Alfa Romeo’s first-ever production SUV, the Stelvio Quadrifoglio stands out thanks to its distinctive Italian style, advanced technology, innovative engines and excellent power-to-weight ratio.

The Stelvio Quadrifoglio extensively integrates lightweight, state-of-the-art materials, such as a carbon fibre driveshaft, to deliver segment-leading torsional rigidity, direct steering and a perfect 50/50 weight distribution.

The range-topping high-performance SUV is powered by an all-aluminum, direct-injection 2.9-litre 24-valve Twin-Turbo intercooled V6 engine, delivering 510hp and 600Nm of torque, which is coupled with the Q4 all-wheel-drive system. The engine is paired to an eight-speed automatic transmission with specific settings for shifting in just 150 milliseconds in Race mode.

Designed to enhance the all-new lightweight Alfa Romeo architecture, the all-aluminium 2.9-litre V6 Twin-Turbo engine features a compact 90-degree layout and was holistically designed for a low centre of gravity within the chassis.

Advanced technology features unique to the Stelvio Quadrifoglio include a four-mode Alfa DNA Pro selector with Race mode, torque vectoring differential, Quadrifoglio-tuned adaptive suspension and cylinder deactivation to maximise fuel efficiency.

A number of ultra-high performance options will be available on the Stelvio Quadrifoglio, including Ultra-lightweight carbon fibre shell Sparco racing seats, providing maximum lateral support during extreme cornering, and designed to be the lightest in the segment while providing comfort for long road trips and ultra-high-performance, and a Brembo carbon-ceramic material (CCM) brake system.

The Alfa Romeo Stelvio range is now available in UK dealerships and the range-topping Stelvio Quadrifoglio will join the line up in the UK in 2018.

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Ferrari drivers take Giulia Quadrifoglio on track

FRESH from the Italian Grand Prix, Ferrari Racing Team drivers Sebastian Vettel, Kimi Räikkönen and Antonio Giovinazzi swapped their scarlet F1 race car for a spin in the Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrofoglio, the marque’s most powerful production car ever.

A thrilling film shows the three Ferrari drivers behind the wheel of the Giulia Quadrifoglio – which can achieve a top speed of 191mph and zero to 62mph sprint in 3.9 seconds – racing around Alfa Romeo’s famous Balocco (Vercelli) test track just days after the Grand Prix in Monza.

Former F1 World Champions Vettel – who secured a third place podium spot at the weekend – and Räikkönen and stablemate Giovinazzi got the full Giulia Quadrifoglio experience, revelling in its unrivalled saloon power thanks to the car’s 2.9-litre Bi-Turbo V6 engine and 510hp.

The sports sedan is no stranger to blazing a trail, previously setting a blistering Nürburgring lap record for its category of 7 minutes 32 seconds. Watch it in action here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5gEdJmIVqLY

 

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Italy’s finest crowned at Salon Privé

1960 Alfa Romeo 6C 3000 CM Pininfarina Superflow IV with trophies

REAFFIRMING its place as the UK’s finest Concours celebration, 2017’s Chubb Insurance Concours d’Elégance saw some of the world’s rarest and most spectacular classic cars battle it out on the prestigious grounds of Blenheim Palace.

Taking home top honours, with the Best of Show Trophy, was the revered 1960 Alfa Romeo 6C 3000 CM Pininfarina Superflow IV. A car that hadn’t been shown in the UK until its Salon Privé Concours debut, it shook off fierce competition in the Curvaceous Coupes Class, and will return to its home in the USA with not only the Best in Show Trophy but also a Best-in-Class award.

Now in its 12th year, Salon Privé continues to attract some of the most important collector cars in the world, including a one-of-37 ‘covered headlamp’ 1961 Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spider. Restored in the UK during 2012, this exceptional SWB-variant California Spider wowed judges, becoming Best in Show runner-up, and taking home a Best-in-Class win in the Riviera Cruising category.

Other winners of Italian descent include the last-ever UK-delivered, right-hand-drive 1973 Ferrari 365 GTS/4 ‘Daytona’ Spider, one of just 122 that originally left the Maranello factory in that specification. Remaining with its current owner for over 30 years, it won the hearts of Salon Privé guests and took home the People’s Choice Award.

Joining the Ferrari was a special 1967 Lamborghini Miura P400. Having only returned from Italy and Lamborghini’s in-house restoration team, Polo Storico, in July, it took home top honours in the Evolution of the Supercar Pin-Ups Class.

“This year’s event has been one of our most successful and pivotal Concours events to-date; a game-changing year, firmly planting Salon Privé on the global Concours scene. I was delighted to present each car and owner with their award, especially the unparalleled Alfa Romeo 6C 3000 CM Pininfarina Superflow IV,” said Salon Privé managing director & concours chairman, Andrew Bagley.

“The car and owner have travelled from the USA to make their UK concours debut, and it was an honour and a privilege to display it on the Blenheim Palace lawns, among some of the most important collectors in the world.

“The Superflow wowed the judges from the off, in hot pursuit it has to be said from the Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spider. This historically important Alfa Romeo started off life as a race car, driven by none other than Juan Manuel Fangio, taking second place in the 1953 Mille Miglia. Bodied by Carrozzeria Colli, this ex-factory race car then became a mule for Pininfarina and was modified no less than four times until 1960, when it became the Superflow IV with its Plexi roof.”

Salon Privé, the UK’s first event organiser of its type to organise two Concours at the same event, hosted guests at its inaugural Concours Masters. New for 2017, this year’s extravaganza played tribute to Ferrari’s 70th anniversary. Highlights included a 1949 Ferrari 166 Inter Coupe – the oldest-surviving UK-based Ferrari – to the latest Ferrari LaFerrari Aperta, which was built to celebrate the marque’s 70th anniversary.