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Alfa Romeo GTV

Alfa romeo gtv

 

alfa romeo gtv

A farewell is never easy, and it is even worse whether what you are saying goodbye to has brought you many moments of happiness. This is the situation that Manu is living with his Alfa Romeo Gtv about which we are going to talk in this article. Our readers already know Manu due to the interview with his awesome Lancia Beta. He treats with much care all his vehicles and you will see how this Gtv is not an exception.

The history of the Gtv, Gran Turismo Veloce, goes back to its predecessor in which it is clearly inspired, the Alfa Romeo Alfetta Gtv designed by Giorgetto Giugiaro in 1974. This model was iconic and became a reference for the Turin-based brand. Twenty years later, the Italian brand honored this legendary model with this new version hiring Enrico Fumia from Pininfarina to design it. Nonetheless, its interior design was not approved. This task, thus, would correspond to Walter da Silva. At the same time, the Alfa Romeo Spider, the Roadster version of the Gtv with which it shares a large part of its components, was useful to recall the Giulia Spider of the 60s.

The production of this vehicle consisted on 3 phases. Between the first two (the 95 and the 98 one), the differences were especially aesthetical especially in the interior. In phase 2 (2003), changes were already taking place, such as the grid, which inherits an aspect like the 147´s front, and modifications in the defenses, with the license plate holder on one side. Manu’s unit is a phase 2, specifically a 2001 model, which he bought in Vigo in 2016. Although he currently sees more strengths than weaknesses, this was not his first choice. In fact, he agreed with a friend to exchange his old Alfa Romeo 156 for a Fiat Coupé but, to prove it and perhaps it was well equipped and came from Germany with 220 HP and turbo, did not convince him. Another option was a Gtv V6 but, to use it for the daily driving, it was impossible on the fuel consume aspect, and its maintenance was more expensive.

Considering all the above things, the atmospheric version of the 2 liters and 4 cylinders seemed to be the most reasonable choice. Therefore, Manu opted for this vehicle: it was cheap, the maintenance has not been as exhaustive as he would have liked, it had a defective thermostat and inadequate spark plugs, which caused it to consume excessively, and in which refers to aesthetics or color (it was silver gray), or the condition of the body weren´t optimal but the possibility of leaving it as you see in the images and the fact of having all the components and clips, encouraged our protagonist to buy and clean it up little by little.

It was restored as a classic disassembling and repainting each part in Missano Rot red at the “Barra de Miño” body shop, adding some leather parts on the dashboard as well as upholstering some interior details in leather. Apart from this, the spoiler and the 17” wheels, as difficult to achieve as the other components, contribute to give an impressive appearance that leaves no room for indifference when seeing it passing by.

The Gtv at that time had no direct rivals. Each brand understood the concept of sportive “small and affordable” in its own way, offering a wide range of engines and tractions, obtaining different results in the market. Therefore, we could compare it almost exclusively by the volume of sales with much more commercial cars such as the Audi TT or the Toyota Celica and others, with more contained sales like the Italian, such as the Mitsubishi Eclipse or the Ford Cougar.

On the go, according to Manu himself, it is enjoyable on a road with good tarmac. It is not a car for “rallying” despite having a variable timing camshaft, which serves to be agile at low rpms, the fact of having a gearbox with very long gears and its high weight make it difficult to reach the top of the tachometer where the car delivers its full potential.

If he continued with it, his until now owner planned to prepare it by installing a lighter flywheel, but the weight and the front traction ballast a vehicle that would otherwise be a perfect sports car. The high weight of its doors, 60 kg each, is one of the biggest cons that its owner tells us about. Even so, this is not the fundamental reason to sell it. He has his fantastic Lancia Beta and recently acquired an interesting Autobianchi with pending projects, which moves him away from using his beloved Gtv as a daily. Manu is going to miss everything of a car that he always liked. His departure to the Basque Country is not a casualty inasmuch as Manu knows how his car will be treated and his new owner will enjoy it as he did. All this doesn’t mean that both Manu and automotive fans will miss this rare jewel that has gone unnoticed by many people.

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