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Giulia 1600 Sprint GTA
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  Alfa Romeo Giulia 1600 Sprint GTA
 

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Country of origin:Italy
Produced from:1965 - 1969
Numbers built:500 (Both road and race cars)
Designed by:Bertone (Giugiaro)
Author:Wouter Melissen
Last updated:Before December 1st, 2004
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Click here to download printer friendly versionLaunched late in 1963 at the Frankfurt Motor Show, the Alfa Romeo Giulia Sprint Coupe combined elegant Giorgietto Giugiaro penned lines with an all-alloy, competition derived four cylinder engine. The Italian manufacturer recognised its obvious racing potential and tasked the semi-official competition department Autodelta to create a replacement of the Giulia Ti Super to take on the the dominant Lotus Cortina in the European Touring Car Championship.

Autodelta's was no half measured effort as it completely reworked the Tipo 105 Coupe to create the Giulia Sprint GTA. The changes were so fundamental that a run of 500 cars had to be produced for homologation purposes. The A was short for Alleggerita or lightened. This was more than an apt description as close to 275 kg was shed. Most steel body panels, with the exception of the load-bearing sills were replaced by much lighter aluminium copies. The side windows were made from plexiglass and most of the sound-deadening was also removed.

To power the GTA, Autodelta used a derivative of the Giulia Sprint Coupe's 1,570 cc four cylinder engine. As in the TZ competition car also built by Autodelta for Alfa Romeo, the GTA engine featured a twin-spark head with bigger valves. Further modifications included lightweight magnesium cam-covers, sump and and bell-housing. Breathing through two sizeable Weber carburettors, the twin-spark engine produced 115 bhp in road trim. The 'Corsa' competition cars featured engines that pumped out as much as 170 bhp.

Carried over from the production Giulia Sprint Coupe road car were the double-wishbone front suspension and the live rear axle. The suspension was lowered and reinforced to cope with the rigours of racing. The GTA was also equipped with achingly beautiful 14-inch Campagnolo alloy wheels, which further lowered the car's stance. Other changes included a close-ratio gearbox, a separate oil cooler and a more sparingly equipped but tastefully finished interior.

The GTA production car was ready in 1965 and received universal acclaim thanks to its competition pedigree. Alfa Romeo had few problems finding customers for the run of homologation models. Where allowed, even more exotic materials were used for the Corsa, or competition versions. To ensure the GTA was instantly competitive, Autodelta's Carlo Chiti was very selective in his choice of customers. It prompted potential buyers to nominate professional drivers to ensure they got the opportunity to but a GTA Corsa.

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  Article Image gallery (111) Specifications User Comments (2)