In the years immediately following World War II, Alfa Romeo was attempting a major revival. Their works had been devastated by bombing raids, and the market for their expensive, grand prix-derived, coach-built sports cars was rapidly diminishing. The company needed not only a new factory, but an altogether new direction for their products. Thankfully, a completely new car – and an entirely new philosophy for Alfa Romeo – was developed to replace the ageing pre-war derived models. The 1900 debuted in 1950 as the first Alfa built entirely on an assembly line, the first with a monocoque chassis, and the first Alfa with left-hand drive. It was an immediate success. Building on the momentum from the 1900, Alfa introduced the Tipo 102, known as the 2000, in 1957. The flagship 2000 featured an improved, enlarged version of the 1900’s iron block four-cylinder engine, displacing 2 liters and produced a healthy 105 horsepower in standard trim. As with the 1900 before, the 2000 was designed from the start to be fitted with factory bodies, but also to accommodate the work of Italy’s finest coachbuilders. Saloons were built in-house, while the coupe was styled by Bertone and the fabulous Spider wore coachwork by the great Carrozzeria Touring of Milan. Along with its beautiful bodywork, the Spider and Sprint Coupe were updated with twin Solex carburetors that bumped power to 115 hp, and a 5-speed gearbox was shared across the range. The Tipo 102 2000 played big brother to the wildly popular Giulietta and Giulia models, and while often seen as somewhat understated in comparison, the 2000 has undoubtedly become a highly desirable collector piece.
This 1959 Alfa Romeo 2000 wears beautiful and highly desirable spider coachwork by Touring. It is a beautiful example of this rare model, with its vivid Alfa red paintwork accented by a black top and interior and gorgeous polished Borrani wire wheels; an expensive and scarce factory option. Carrozzeria Touring’s coachwork is simply beautiful, featuring crisp lines dotted with subtly incorporated scoops and vents that were de rigueur for the time, particularly as Alfa Romeo attempted to appeal to American buyers. Panel fit on this car is outstanding, the doors closing with the lightest touch, indicating excellent structure integrity. Highlighting the paint is exterior brightwork which is beautifully presented with straight bumpers, excellent body side moldings, and fine detailing around the grilles and lamps. As mentioned, the car rides on a set of fabulous and very rare alloy Borrani wheels wrapped in period correct Michelin X radial tires which give it the perfect stance and gobs of road presence.
The purposeful but comfortable cockpit is in fine order throughout, with fresh black leather upholstery on the seats, and very good black door cards and black carpets. The soft top is trimmed in black canvas, and presents in very good order with proper fit. Opening the doors reveals polished alloy sill plates and correct Alfa Romeo pattern rubber mats which are in excellent condition; as are the other rubber parts such as the correct accordion shift boot and Alfa-branded pads on the floor-hinged pedals. The dash, which appears to be in original condition, is a simple and clean affair that is free of clutter, allowing the driver to get down to the business at hand. Original instruments and switchgear are in fine order, as is the lovely polished alloy three-spoke wheel with its black rim. Typically Italian, a dash plaque boasts of Alfa Romeo’s world-championship success in motorsport, proclaiming it “The car with the oldest and greatest racing experience.” Included in the sale are the original owner’s manual, a service manual and a wooden tool box with Alfa Romeo factory tools.
Beneath the skin, the chassis and undercarriage appear quite clean and tidy, with satin black finishes on the major components, and still retaining a high degree of its originality. The same goes with the engine compartment, where the two-liter four-cylinder engine is correctly finished with black wrinkle-finish on the head and cam cover. The detailing is nice and clean without appearing over-restored. Twin Solex PHH carburetors are correct for this model, and help to develop a very useful 115 horsepower, producing evocative induction and exhaust notes along the way. Revs are encouraged thanks to the slick-shifting 5-speed gearbox, which makes for delightfully engaging and entertaining drive.
This beautiful, rare and highly desirable Touring-bodied Alfa Romeo 2000 Spider is a wonderful example that would make a spectacular entrant for rallies and events such as the New England 1000 or Colorado Grand, or would be equally suited to the simple pleasure of savoring your favorite roads. It is a highly attractive, yet thoroughly usable example from Alfa Romeo’s renaissance years.
May 22, 2018
Mar 8, 2018