Very expensive at £64,995 but, as Richard Mason wonders, could this be one of the best examples of Alfa’s purest Spider?
it’s a lot of money for an Alfa Romeo Spider, but it’s the Duetto that’s most collectable. This a car that’s been in receipt of a lot of work to keep it to the standard it seems to have enjoyed most of its life.
Receipts from the last four years attest to new brakes, a suspension overhaul, handling kit, stainless steel exhaust and manifold, new Nardi steering wheel and Cromadora alloy wheels with new Pirelli CN36 Cinturato tyres, all from top specialist Alfaholics. A sizeable, if not comprehensive, sheaf of MoTs shows a reliable, well-maintained car that hasn’t thrown up a single advisory for the past six years. The car also comes with a USB stick promising digitised examples of older ownership documents, although we were unable to view it on our test.
The engine fires up with a slight lethargy, but that’s about the only detraction. Once on the move, the engine response is eager with a crisp exhaust note. Brakes are reassuring and maintenance has been keenly followed with regards the suspension, judging by the ride, which is smooth and free from rattles. The driving position is comfortable, the steering is direct and responsive and the gearbox is slick.
Recent respray in Verde Vivo
The car is finished in Verde Vivo (Vibrant Green), which looks good, the result of a recent high-quality respray. Only on the top of the nearside wing are there a few very minor imperfections. The chrome door handles are smooth with hardly any pitting, with the door mirrors almost blemish-free, and the bumper chrome and other brightwork in similarly sparkling condition. The grille could do with a clean, but that’s about it. The headlamps’ domed plastic covers are clear and uncracked, each secured by one chrome clip. The Cromodora alloy wheels are in good condition too.
A shiny wood-rimmed Nardi steering wheel framing two large Jaeger Italia dials makes a good first impression inside. The black plastic seats are wearing well and with plenty of adjustment. Carpets are in good condition, with the driver’s over-mat displaying a huge black embossed Alfa Romeo logo. The glovebox lid needs adjustment – it doesn’t quite fit straight – but the instruments all work. Wind-up windows work smoothly, as do wipers, indicators and heater. The manual folding hood is in good condition, with the rear plastic window retaining its transparency.
Keen eye for a detailer
Opening the forward-hinging bonnet to be greeted by bright red, new plug leads sets the tone for the rest of the engine bay. It’s not over detailed, but clean and with all the components looking reassuringly fresh and dry. The rubber seal just below the heater air intake on the edge of the bay has obvious overspray, but it should be easy to clean it off. The oil filler cap shows no sign of water contamination, while the pair of twin-choke Weber carbs are dominated by a long black air filter that looks new. Even the underside of the bonnet is pristine, adorned by an Alfa Romeo sticker showing the correct grades of fluids to be used.