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Oldtimer Australia

PO Box 138 Hamilton QLD 4007 Australia

1952 Alfa Romeo 1900C Sprint by Touring For Sale

Details:

Oldtimer Australia is delighted to offer for sale a rare 1952 Alfa Romeo 1900C Sprint Series 1, Type 1 by Carrozzeria Touring.

The documentation on file from Centro Documentazione Alfa Romeo confirms this is a factory right hand drive, matching numbers example which was delivered new on the 6th November 1952 to Noisy-le-Sec, a commune in the eastern suburbs of Paris, France.

Alfa Romeo built approximately 650 1900C Sprint Coupe’s, of which around 420 were bodied by Carrozzeria Touring. Of the 420 cars, there were 270 Series 1, Type 1 cars, making this an exceptionally rare car.

The first owner of this Alfa Romeo 1900C Sprint Coupe was a lady by the name of Elaine Staniol. The car was registered with the registration 2550 BQ 75 in her name on the 26th November 1952. She sold the car to a family member in June 1955 who kept the car for another three years. The car passed through a few subsequent owners before it was taken of the road in 1975. It is understood the car was damaged and it was subsequently repaird by an Alfa Romeo dealer and reregistered in 1980. The car was then sold in 1985 to Mr Montagnana from Rosoy, a small town just north of Paris in France.
The car has quite a good history file, which includes documentation from Montagnana’s period of ownership. He had the car restored and there is an invoice on file from Atelier Automobile Anciennes dated 27th of September 1988. The car was stripped to bare metal, necessary repairs were done and the car was completely repainted. The underside of the car and the inside of the wheel arches were given an anti-corrosion treatment. There is also an invoice on file from Check Point dated June 1990 for rebuilding the engine, overhaul of the radiator, replacement of the wheel and master cylinders, replacement of all the wheel bearings and ball joints as well as repair of the water pump, the carburettor, and the starter motor. In 1992 the interior was retrimmed by The Leather Design in Montlouis-sur-Loire, France.

Interestingly, there is a fax on file from Montagnana in which he mentions the car was part of the Alfa Romeo Club de France display at Retromobile in Paris in February 2000.

In May 2000 he sold the car to a major car collector based in Hong Kong. In 2002 he sent a number of his cars to Australia, including this Alfa Romeo. There is an import approval on file dated 2nd May 2002. Shortly after arrival in Australia the car was given to well respected Italian classic car specialist Sports and Classic Car Services in Braeside, Victoria. They serviced the car, replaced the exhaust and executed some minor repairs.

In March 2003 the car was acquired by a well-known Victorian ‘car family’ who have used it from time to time for various classic car events and rallies.

Today this car still presents really well. The ‘grigio ferro metallizzato’ (gun metal grey metallic) paint is a unique and stunning colour for the car. The original colour of this car is not known as the records were never kept, however, this is a factory colour and therefore it may well be original. The car looks to have had been repainted at some stage in its life. Its current condition is consistent with a car which has been used and enjoyed. It is generally very good, though when you look closely, there are a few marks and stone chips. The most noticeable blemish in the paint is a small star on the boot lid. The paint retains a strong depth of colour and nice gloss finish.

The colour really suits the car and emphasises all of Touring’s sculptured lines and curves. The more you look at the car the more details you notice! It all starts at the front, which features the ornate Alfa Romeo grill and air intakes which are encased by beautiful curved body lines. The doors are another interesting design feature on the car. They wrap around the sill, rather than sit on top of it. The elegant door handles are another master piece. The sinuous lines continue towards the rear of the car where the sweeping roof line flows down to the boot and the very elegant tail section. On the boot you’ll also find the prominent Alfa Romeo and Carrozzeria Touring badges. Another very elegant feature on the car are the frenched tail and indictor lights that sit just below the sculptured line in the rear panel. The condition of the bright work and exterior trim is consistent with the paint work. All the glass and lenses on the car are in excellent condition.

The Touring bodied cars were all ‘Superleggera’ construction with hand crafted aluminium panels wrapped around a tubular steel frame. Importantly, the body on this car looks to be in good condition. The panel gaps are very good and the doors, bonnet and boot all fit and open/ close well.

The painted wire wheels on the car are in excellent condition and they are shod with new Michelin X 165R400 tyres which are date stamped 4122 (week 41, 2022).

Opening the door is another experience with this car. You push a button to release the concealed door handle. Inside you are welcomed by a very Italian interior. It’s simplistic yet elegant. The seats are in good condition with no tears or cracks in the leather. The rear seats appear to have hardly been used and present well. The dashboard is simple yet functional. The instruments, which are another feature, are all clean, clear and appear to be in good working order. The odometer currently reads 48, 319km. The delicate wooden steering wheel is in a good condition with just the right amount of patina. We did notice the ashtray is missing. The carpets present well and are in very good condition. This car retains its original column shift gear lever.

Whilst this car is ‘art on wheels’, as with every Alfa Romeo it is all about the drive and we couldn’t wait to take it out on the road! To start the car you do need to use the choke. The starting procedure requires the ignition switch under the dash to be on, you then turn the key and push the starter button. With the choke on its starts fairly easy. Once the engine is running you only need to wait a few seconds before you can push the choke back and use the throttle to further warm the engine up. The first impressions are immediately good. The car has a raspy exhaust note with that typical Alfa Romeo pedigree evident. The engine sounds strong and idles nicely. The column shift takes a little bit of getting used to but once you get the hang of it the gear changes are relatively easy and direct. First gear is down and towards you . . . engage and you are away.

Out on the open road this Alfa Romeo is a fun car to drive. It is a very early fifties car and quite well ahead of its time in terms of the drive. The car feels solid and it is quite responsive. The steering is direct and the car handles exactly the way you expect from an Alfa Romeo of this era. Needles to say the car also has a real presence on the road. All too quickly our test drive comes to an end and we return to our showroom with a big smile.

Accompanying the car is a spare wheel, what looks to be an original Radiomatic radio, a Certifcato Di Origine from Alfa Romeo Classiche and an excellent history file.

This Alfa Romeo 1900C Sprint is reluctantly offered sale. It is time for us to find a new home for this car and it would be a great addition to anyone’s collection.

Highlights:

- One of only c270 1900C Sprint Series 1, Type 1 built by Carrozzeria Touring.
- Factory right hand drive.
- Matching numbers as confirmed by Centro Documentazione Alfa Romeo.
- Mille Miglia eligible.
- Fabulous colour scheme.
- Well presented example that is ready to use and enjoy.

Price: AUD $349, 950


Background:

The Alfa Romeo story began in June 1910 when A. L. F. A. (Anonima Lombarda Fabbrica Automobili) was founded in Milan, Italy. Their first car, the 24hp, was a great success and the Alfa name became synonymous with motor racing in the early years. In 1915 Nicola Romeo took over the company and during war time its focus was on military equipment, however, it wanted to build cars. Soon after the very first Alfa Romeo motor vehicle, the Torpedo 20-30hp, was built.

On February 3, 1918, with World War I slowly drawing to a close, the new company called Alfa Romeo was officially registered.

In the early 1920’s Alfa Romeo quickly made a name for itself in motor racing. Drivers like Ugo Sivocci, Antonio Ascari and Enzo Ferrari won several races driving various Alfa Romeo race cars.

Some of the cars produced by Alfa Romeo in the 1920’s and 1930’s could be purchased as either a road car or a race car.

The Alfa Romeo 6C is one of those cars. Introduced at the 1925 Milan Motor Show, the Alfa Romeo 6C 1500 was the first model to carry the 6C name. The nomenclature of the model designation 6C 1500 refers to the engine, where 6C = the number of cylinders, in this case six and 1500 refers to the engine capacity, in this case 1500cc. As was quite common in those days, the bodies were provided by various coach builders such as James Young, Zagato, Touring Superleggera, Castagna, and Pinin Farina.

In 1928 the 6C Sport model was released featuring a double overhead cam six cylinder engine. It quickly made a name for itself winning various races including the 1928 Mille Miglia. The 6C 1500 was superseded by the 6C 1750 in 1929. It was even more successful than its predecessor, winning every major racing event in which it was entered in 1929.

1933 saw the introduction of the 6C 1900 which was superseded by the 6C 2300 in 1934 and the 6C 2500 in 1939. The 6C 2500 was one of the most expensive cars available at the time and was sold to many wealthy customers. A number of coachbuilders used the 6C 2500 as the platform to showcase their cars, but the majority of the cars were built by Touring Superleggera of Milan.

The Alfa Romeo 6C remained in production through until 1954. Its successor, the Alfa Romeo 1900 was first introduced at the Paris Motor Show in 1950. The 1900 was an important car for Alfa Romeo. It was the first car they built entirely on a production line and it was also their first unibody production car. The car was offered as a two door and a four door model and was powered by a new 1, 884cc 4 cylinder twin cam engine. The car performed well, continuing Alfa Romeo’s sporting pedigree and it did not take long before people started racing them. The car was successful in various motor sport events like the Targa Floria and Stella Alpina. Alfa Romeo was keen to capitalise on these successes and started using the slogan ‘The family car that wins races’ to promote sales.

Alfa Romeo contracted Carrozzeria Touring to build a sports coupe version of the 1900 known as the 1900C Sprint and later 1900CS Sprint. Pinin Farina also built a coupe and cabriolet version of the 1900C. The 1900 remained in production through until 1959 and it was a great success for Alfa Romeo with 21, 304 cars built.

The sporting variants were built in very limited numbers. Alfa Romeo built approximately 650 1900C Sprint Coupe’s, of which around 420 were bodied by Carrozzeria Touring and 188 were bodied by Pinin Farina. Of the 420 Touring bodied cars there were 270 Series 1, Type 1 cars and 150 Series 1, Type 2 cars. The Touring bodied 1900CS Sprint were built in greater numbers with around 1, 060 examples built.
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