Will­son’s top tips

Now is the time to reprise the Six­ties Cara­binieri and chase down a steal

Classic Cars (UK) - - Contents - Quentin Will­son’s hot tips

Quentin no­tices UK prices for Alfa 2600 Sprints hand­ily lag­ging be­hind the Euro­pean mar­ket, and Mercedes SLC val­ues be­ing pulled up by R107s

The Alfa 2600 in its day was a real piece – 120mph, twin-cam six-cylin­der, all round discs, fivespeed gear­box and swanky op­tions like leather and power win­dows. One of Guigario’s first de­signs (along with the Gor­don Kee­ble), it had rak­ish Ital­ian glam­our and was a high­speed pur­suit car for the Six­ties Cara­binieri chas­ing down mafia bank rob­bers.

Leg­end has it that de­spite slow sales of the Sprint, Alfa kept pro­duc­tion go­ing purely be­cause the top brass liked the news­pa­per and TV news cov­er­age of all those dra­matic Polizia chases.

The Sprint and even more glam­orous Spi­der were also favourites of movie direc­tors, mak­ing ap­pear­ances in over twenty Ital­ian and French art house movies of the era plus TV shows like The

Cham­pi­ons, The Man From Un­cle and The Saint. Prices don’t yet prop­erly re­flect their rar­ity – only a cou­ple of hun­dred 2600 Sprints sur­vive and in July His­torics sold a rare Uk-sup­plied rhd ’66 ex­am­ple (one of only 596) with only 72,000 miles for £20,720, while a private seller in York has a ’63 lhd car that’s been fully re­stored for £35,750. As the last of the grand tour­ing Al­fas and the fi­nal model to be pow­ered by a twin-cam six, the 2600 Sprint is a very spe­cial and strangely un­der­rated Six­ties Ital­ian GT.

Tatty projects start at ten grand but why bother when you can by shiny cher­ished or re­stored cars for be­tween £20k and £35k? While Euro­pean deal­ers price 2600 Sprints nearer £50k the UK mar­ket doesn’t value them as highly and it’s still pos­si­ble to find de­cent cars here sit­ting twenty grand be­low Dutch, French or Ger­man money. Back in 2014 Sil­ver­stone sold a fine sil­ver ’64 rhd Sprint for £16,675 so val­ues have risen in three years but only mod­estly. The ob­vi­ous com­ments about rust ap­ply, but only buy re­stored or prized ex­am­ples and any cor­ro­sion is­sues should have been sorted. Ex­perts say parts aren’t easy but I looked on Ital­ian ebay and found heaps of used en­gines, in­stru­ments, bumpers, win­dow glasses and even a full in­te­rior. That right-hook Sprint sold by His­torics was an epic bar­gain at £20k. Make sure you don’t miss an­other.

‘You can still find de­cent 2600s sit­ting £20k be­low Euro­pean money’

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