Alfa Romeo 1900C Super Sprint Three-window Coupé 1955
Coachwork by Carrozzeria Touring
Chassis no. AR1900C 10481
•European delivery new
•Desirable Nardi floor shift
Chassis number '10481' is one of 600 Alfa Romeo 1900C Super Sprints produced between 1955 and 1958, of which some 200 are believed to survive today. Touring's three-window coupé is acknowledged as the most elegant and attractive of the 1900 series, with restrained, perfectly balanced lines, devoid of any unnecessary decoration. The brightwork is notable for its simplicity while the dashboard is plain and functional.
Its factory devastated by wartime bombing, Alfa Romeo did not resume car production until 1947, the pre-war 2500C standing the Milan marque in good stead until 1952. The firm's first all-new offering of the post-war period arrived in 1950. Designed by Dr Orazio Satta Puliga and intended for volume production, the 1900 was the first Alfa to employ unitary construction and - in keeping with the company's sporting heritage - was powered by a twin-overhead-camshaft engine. A four-cylinder unit, the latter displaced 1,884cc and produced 90bhp, an output sufficient to propel the four-door saloon to 93mph.
Although ostensibly a humble family conveyance, the 1900 was endowed with sporting credentials which extended beyond its type of power unit, owners enjoying the benefits of wishbone and coil spring independent front suspension and an exceptionally well located live rear axle. It should have surprised nobody therefore, when the 1900's potential was realised in the form of two high performance derivatives. Launched in 1951, the 1900C Sprint featured bodywork by Pinin Farina (cabriolet) and Touring (coupé), both models utilising the 100bhp engine of the 1900TI sports saloon. The Touring-bodied Sprint Coupé attracted such public acclaim that it was subsequently adopted as the basis for all future 'aerodynamic' Alfa Romeo coupés. One direct descendant was, of course, the lovely little Giulietta Sprint in which the family resemblance is immediately obvious.
The Sprint Coupé was designed to offer sporting performance together with '2+2' accommodation - guaranteed to appeal to the sports car enthusiast with a family - while the heart-shaped vertical grille with matched horizontal side intakes became an Alfa trademark on later models. In June 1954 the engine was enlarged to 1,975cc and the model re-designated as the 'Super Sprint'. With 115bhp on tap and possessing an excellent power-to-weight ratio courtesy of the aluminium-alloy body, these cars could top 190km/h. They shone in competitions of all kinds. A total of 949 Sprints and 854 Super Sprints had been made by the time production ceased.
This unique example of a landmark model from one of motoring's most charismatic marques is believed to have been delivered new to Switzerland as confirmed by the Centro Documentazione Alfa Romeo. The car seems to have arrived in France in 1971, staying there for the next 20 years. By 1994 the Alfa belonged to Mr J Durieux in Saint-Tropez, and only left France in 1995 (old Carte Grise on file).
Later on, the car found its way to Belgium where it was bought by the current owner in 2003. He sold the car in 2005 and the buyer started a body-off restoration, which was only finished in 2017/2018. Works carried out included a repaint in lovely two-tone Azzuro Verde Oceano with a dark green roof and matching interior. Other noteworthy features include deleted bumpers, a Nardi remote gear linkage, and Borrani wire wheels. The current owner repurchased the Alfa after the rebuild had been finished. Today, this rare Alfa Romeo is presented in excellent condition after its thorough restoration and is ready for any event.
The car comes with current Belgian registration papers; the original French Carte Grise (cancelled) dated 1971; copies of old photographs; sundry invoices for parts and work carried out; and a large file with notes and correspondence regarding the restoration, parts, etc.
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