Books

Classic Sports Car - - Contents -

Patrick Dasse and pub­lisher Ding­wort Ver­lag have pro­duced a unique ac­count of Alfa Romeo his­tory in this re­mark­able six-book set of more than 1700 pho­to­graphs from the 1960s and early ’70s, many of which have never been pub­lished be­fore; all six are avail­able on­line (visit https://ding­wort-ver­lag. de/en/alfa-romeo/). Beau­ti­fully de­signed and pro­duced, the se­ries fea­tures a fan­tas­tic se­lec­tion of con­tem­po­rary im­agery, sourced from both the fac­tory ar­chives and Qu­at­troruote mag­a­zine, that presents an won­der­fully vivid record.

As well as an in-depth fo­cus on the Tipo 105 range, with sep­a­rate vol­umes on Ber­lina, GT, Spi­der, Zagato and Mon­treal, the set in­cludes a gen­eral look at the fac­tory (Arese: ISBN 978 3 87166 163 1, €89). Not since Robert Dois­neau’s homage to work at the Re­nault plant has such a rich range of pho­to­graphs il­lus­trated pro­duc­tion life. From the foundry and forge at Portello through to crash test­ing at Balocco, the 384-page Arese study cel­e­brates an age be­fore ro­bots took over.

As well as ab­sorb­ing im­ages of as­sem­bly lines, the book also high­lights the ded­i­cated work­force at ev­ery stage of the build. Even the Ri­cambi spares dis­tri­bu­tion is show­cased, with amaz­ing shots of fresh parts that will make Alfa spe­cial­ists drool. Se­cond only to time travel, these in­spired books of­fer a unique win­dow into one of the great­est eras of the mar­que.

The set fea­tures six vol­umes in­clud­ing Gi­u­lia on the sa­loon vari­ants (ISBN 978 3 87166 166 2, €119), Spi­der high­light­ing both Duetto and ‘Kamm tail’ mod­els from 1966 to 1977 (ISBN 978 3 87166 126 6, €79), and the Gi­u­lia GT book that in­cludes all of the Ber­tone-bod­ied beau­ties, the GTA among them (ISBN 978 3 87166 156 3, €119). There’s also a Ju­nior Z vol­ume on the 1970-’75 Zagato-bod­ied cars, such as the Tipo 115 (ISBN 978 3 87166 196 9, €59), plus there’s one on the 1971-’77

Mon­treal (ISBN 978 3 87166 157 0, €69).

The books vary in length, com­bin­ing both mono­chrome and colour ar­chive pho­tos with Ger­man and English text. Each of­fers key ref­er­ence for re­stor­ers, with a fine se­lec­tion of de­tail stud­ies of en­gines and in­te­ri­ors, but this is no dull anorak’s guide. Com­ple­ment­ing the car im­agery are glo­ri­ous mo­tor-show scenes, pro­to­type test­ing, press launches and pro­mo­tional events. For ex­am­ple, the Spi­der vol­ume in­cludes rarely seen shots from the May ’66 launch of the Duetto on the Ital­ian liner

SS Raf­faello, where three cars were un­veiled and driven around the deck en route to New York. Other fas­ci­nat­ing fea­tures in­clude the spec­tac­u­lar Mon­treal Group 4 racer that was de­vel­oped by Au­todelta and cam­paigned un­suc­cess­fully by Ger­man dealer Di­eter Gle­ich.

A fan­tas­tic pub­lish­ing achieve­ment and a real must-have for all pas­sion­ate Al­fisti. MW

‘A re­mark­able six-book set of 1700-plus pho­to­graphs, many of which have never been pub­lished be­fore’

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