By the early 1990s the whole classic roadster era of sports cars was all but over. Manufacturers such as MG, Triumph, and Fiat had either left the market or completely gone out of business. Adding to that, Mazda had released the Miata which made people even less interested in a classic sports car, especially when the Miata did everything those old cars did and did it better. The one thing that the Miata lacked was any kind of mythology, European heritage, or storied past.
There was a single classic roadster hold out and that was the Alfa Romeo Spider.
The Alfa Spider dates back to 1955 with the launch of the Giulietta Spider. That car evolved to the Giulia and then in 1966 as the stunning 105 series Duetto Spider. The basic 105 chassis was upgraded over the years and lasted all the way to 1994. Some of the design changes were good, such as a very nice Kamm tail body redesign launched in 1970. Other changes like the various tacked on rubber impact bumpers, which began in 1975 with various redesigns used over the years to try to better incorporate them into the new design. By 1990 all looked grim for the Spider, but then Alfa surprised us with what was the final fourth generation version of the Spider. Instead of using a lot of inexpensively-designed added safety equipment, Alfa commissioned Pininfarina to do a complete redesign of the car. This new Spider, which launched in the U.S. as a 1991 model, was possibly the most beautiful version of the car since the original Duetto model. Beyond being just a pretty car, it also incorporated many modern features such as Bosch Motronic Fuel Injection, on board diagnostics, variable valve timing, a drivers side airbag, and power steering. These fourth generations cars are one of the best examples of a truly modern/classic sports car.
The 1992 Alfa Romeo Spider Veloce featured here is finished in Alfa Red over a correct black leather with grey Alcantara inserts interior. The seller states that the car comes equipped with air conditioning, four-wheel disc brakes, and an AM/FM/cassette radio, and is offered with documentation, a clean CARFAX report, and a clear title.
The exterior of this Alfa Spider Veloce received a paint respray in the correct Alfa Red under prior ownership and features a power antenna, dual mirrors, a black soft top with a clear plastic rear window, a trunk-mounted third brake lamp, and a single exhaust outlet. The seller notes paint imperfections, all of which are shown in the gallery for the listing.
The interior is fitted with correct black leather and gray Alcantara bucket seats, matched to the door panels, dash, center console, and carpeting. Features include air conditioning, power windows, power steering, and a leather-wrapped steering wheel. There is a single dash crack that can be seen in the pictures, but this is something quite common for these dashes. I would likely replace the dash if I bought the car but would leave the rest of the interior alone. The seller states that the AM/FM/cassette radio produces some static. Instrumentation consists of a 140-mph speedometer, an 8,000-rpm tachometer, and auxiliary gauges for the fuel level, coolant temperature, oil pressure, and voltage. The six-digit mechanical odometer reads 18,600 miles, which is in line with the most recent figure of 18,210 miles logged on the CARFAX report in August 2023.
The car is powered by its original 2.0-liter DOHC inline-four which features a Bosch Motronic fuel injection system and was rated at 120 horsepower and 117 lb-ft of torque when new. They add that an oil change was performed in September 2023, and other recent work includes the replacement of the fuel filter and the clutch slave cylinder. Power is fed to the rear wheels via a five-speed manual transmission. The condition of the engine compartment to me looks like it should for a 13k mile car that is 31 years old despite the comments questioning this. Note that the Carafax report backs up the mileage claim.
These series 4 Alfa Spiders are truly great cars and represent the last of the classic Italian roadsters, yet also have all the amenities to make them usable daily on today’s roads. The prices for these final Alfa Spiders have been pretty reasonable for quite awhile, and to me represent one of the best values in the current classic sports car market. They offer better drivability than any of the Alfa Romeo cars that came before while still having that classic Italian sport car elegance that make them something extra special and unique in the collector car hobby. Sure, you could get a Miata but this Alfa is so much cooler and has a lot more soul than the Miata would.
The auction for this 1992 Alfa Romeo Spider Veloce ends Friday, October 27, 2023, at 12:00 p.m. (PDT)