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1958 Abarth-Alfa Romeo 1000GT Berlinetta

The Abarth-Alfa Romeo 1000 GT Berlinetta was a prototype built by Abarth in collaboration with Alfa Romeo in 1958.

The design of the car was made to bring to the market a sports sedan bearing the mark of the house of the biscione. For this reason the Milanese industry turned to Carlo Abarth for its realization, as it had lasted a collaboration agreement with him for two years. The project was not then brought into series production after an initial presentation at the Turin motor show as the Italian-Austrian engineer became a partner of Fiat.

The tubular chassis of the car was developed by Mario Colucci, while the engine derived from the one used on the Alfa Romeo Giulietta 1300, as well as the gearbox, transmission and braking system. The engine was however developed with new sports components, making it achieve a power of 88 hp. The design of the body was entrusted to Bertone, who had it designed by Franco Scaglione.

The accident & L.Colani new body design
The prototype of the "1000 GT Coupé" was destroyed in 1959, during some tests conducted on the track of the AVUS, due to the explosion of a tire. The wreck of the car was left to Herbert Schulze, Alfa Romeo dealer in Berlin, who a few weeks later entrusted him to the stylist Luigi Colani to have a new fiberglass body made, with substantial aesthetic changes in the rear part. The tubular frame was retained and, instead, replaced the engine with a "Giulietta" engine of 1300 cc. Even in the new production the prototype did not follow production.

Multitubular chassis:designed by Mario Colluci, one of the most appreciated technicians detached by Alfa for the occasion.
Bodywork: aluminum made by Bertone on a drawing by Franco Scaglione.

Engine, suspensions and the bridge of the Alfa SV
Gearbox: 5-speed Porsche
Engine reduced to 998cc, 88 hp
weight ratio power 2.27 kg / hp (9.2 for an SV)
short wheelbase of 2.16 m
weight: 640Kg

Max speed: 200 Km/h
It was also planned to use a 1300 cc engine and a 1600cc,
233Km/h are announced for the 1300cc and 250Km/h for the 1600cc.
Presented at the Turin Salon in October 1958 and it made sensation.

Photo Gallery

In 1959 during tests on the Avus in Berlin, the tires did not withstand the pressure and the car has suffered huge damage. The Alfa Romeo dealer in Berlin Herbert Schulze bought the car and had it repaired by the Luigi Colani. Colani born in Berlin, is of Kurdish and Polish descent and his father came from Madulain near St. Moritz in eastern Switzerland.

He studied sculpture and painting at the Academy of Arts, Berlin in 1946 and in 1948, he undertook the study of aerodynamics at the Sorbonne in Paris, France.

His long career began in the 1950s when he designed cars for companies such as FiatAlfa RomeoLanciaVolkswagen, and BMW. In 1957, he dropped his given first name Lutz and henceforth went by the name of Luigi. His unconventional designs have made him famous, not only in design circles, but also to the general public. He has received numerous design awards, although his unconventional approach has left him largely an outsider from the mainstream of industrial design.


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