Six stunning Alfa Romeos in Bonhams' Milan sale

31st October 2022
Bob Murray

Cars and their home towns don’t get much more synonymous than Alfa Romeo and Milan. For years the company emblem proudly said Milano on it (alongside the snake swallowing a baby, naturally). These days Alfas hail from all over, but the link with the northern Italian fashion capital where Alfa was founded in 1910 endures. Surely there’s nowhere more evocative to pick up that classic Alfa you always promised yourself? You can do exactly that on 18 November when Bonhams holds a very Alfa-centric collector car auction in Milan. Here are our top six cars in the sale, collectively a great tasty slice of la dolce vita. Enjoy!


1961 Alfa Romeo Giulietta Sprint, £38-£55,000

“Giulietta” has long been part of Alfa’s DNA but this was the first Alfa to bear the name. The pretty coupe, designed by Bertone, first came out in 1954 and established the firm’s reputation for big performance in small cars. A rev-hungry twin-cam 1290cc motor, fine-handling, responsive chassis and excellent brakes made the Giulietta Sprint a fantastic driver's car. This one is said to be remarkably original and equally remarkable is that in more than 60 years it has had just three owners.


1967 Alfa Romeo Giulia Sprint GT Veloce Coupé, £47-£55,000

Giulietta became Giulia in 1962 but the model’s reputation as a true driver’s car suffered no similar diminution. Alfa’s mainstream four-seater for the masses just got better and better, remaining in production in different forms until 1977. Designed by Bertone’s young star designer, Giorgetto Giugiaro, the Giulia gained a more powerful 1570cc engine which in twin-Weber GT Veloce form as fitted to the gorgeous coupe in the sale developed 106PS (78kW). With a five-speed gearbox, independent front suspension, coil-sprung live rear axle and all round disc brakes, it could hit 112mph and go round corners like a dream. The car in the Bonhams sale comes from a prominent Italian private collection.


1992 Alfa Romeo SZ, £55-£64,000

Carrozzeria Zagato had done special-bodied Alfas before but none were as controversial as the aggressive and angular SZ, a car known as 'Il Mostro' (The Monster). These days people love it for its chunky wedge shape, superb handling and rarity (only around 1000 ever made), but at its debut at the Geneva Show in 1989 it was widely derided. No one laughed at the plastic-bodied two-seater’s performance though, with its 3.0-litre four-cam V6 dishing up 210PS ( 157kW) which with the car’s light weight and low Cd gave a 152mph top speed. The car for sale was delivered new to Holland and is currently unregistered. 


1964 Alfa Romeo Giulia 1600 Spider Veloce, £85-£111,000

Back to lovely Giulia, and the Pininfarina-designed Spider convertible, precursor to the more famous Duetto Spider that replaced it from 1966. Like other Giulias, the Spider got the classic four-cylinder twin-cam engine in 1.6-litre form, along with a five-speed gearbox. It also got looks that made it among the most attractive Alfas of its, or any, day. In the ultimate Giulia spec of Veloce with 129PS ( 96kW), the Spider was the quickest of all the Giulias. This example has formed part of an exclusive private collection since 2017.


1953 Alfa Romeo 1900C coupe, £202-£236,000

Alfa’s first new design after the Second World War, the 1900 was known as “the family car that wins races”. That’s handy today because as one of the final first series of 1900s made, this fully restored, ready-to-drive example is eligible for the present-day running of the Mille Miglia. And what a smashing way to take on such an epic road race this would be. The 1900 was Alfa’s first unitary design while its superleggera construction ensured weight was kept to around 1000kg. The suspension was sophisticated for the day and of course under the bonnet was a twin-cam engine which in the C (for short chassis) coupe versions developed 100PS (75kW).


1949 Alfa Romeo 6C 2500 Super Sport Cabriolet, £384-£473,000

The 2500 had originally come out in 1939 but, after the wartime hiatus, was hastily revised in a variety of new guises to spearhead Alfa’s postwar recovery. Dated in some ways it might have been, but it still made a convincing machine with its all-independent suspension, big brakes, fast steering and slick column-mounted gearchange. The engine was a 2443cc version of the firm’s race-developed double-overhead-camshaft six-cylinder. That dished up 105PS ( 83kW) in twin carburettor Super Sport form like the Pinin Farina-designed two-seat cabriolet in the same. It was a 100mph car. 

The Bonhams Milano sale is on 18 November, see the full catalogue here.

Images courtesy of Bonhams

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