The most desirable road car ever made?

Maybe, maybe not, depending on who you ask. But certainly, with reportedly only a whopping 18 examples to have ever been made, the 33 Stradale merits serious consideration.

The Stradale, first built in 1967, was based on the Autodelta Alfa Romeo T33 racing car. The car, designed by Franco Scaglione, and built by Carrozzeria Marazzi, made its debut at the 1967 Turin Motorshow.

Built in an attempt by Alfa to make some of its racing technology available to the public, it was the most expensive automobile for sale to the public in 1968 at US$17,000 (when the average cost of a new car in 1968 was $2,822) (or ~ USD $108,110 and $17,946, respectively, when adjusted for inflation— Ed.).

The Stradale is believed to be the first production vehicle to feature dihedral doors, also known as butterfly doors. The Stradale also features windows which seamlessly curve upward into the ‘roof’ of the vehicle.

The race-bred engine bore no relation to the mass-produced units in Alfa’s more mainstream vehicles. Race engineer Carlo Chiti designed an oversquare (78 mm bore x 52,2 mm stroke) dry-sump lubricated 1,995 cc (121.7 cu in) V8 that featured SPICA fuel injection, four ignition coils and 16 spark plugs. The engine used four chain-driven camshafts to operate the valve train and had a rev-limit of 10000 rpm. The engine produced 230 bhp (172 kW) at 8800 rpm in road trim and 270 bhp (200 kW) in race trim.

In another break from convention, Alfa used a six-speed transaxle gearbox by Valerio Colotti.

The car takes 5.5 seconds to reach 60 mph (96.56 km/h) from a standing start and has top speed of 260 km/h (160 mph) (source).


Also, some scale should help: compared to modern cars, the 33 Stradale is tiny.

Perhaps the more interesting question is this: what other road cars should be in the running as being among the most desirable ever produced?


~ by velofinds on March 18, 2011.

6 Responses to “The most desirable road car ever made?”

  1. From a dramatic design standpoint, the 33 Stradale is second to none. Check out a video we had up a month ago:

    To add on the list, I nominate the Ferrari 330 P4 and the Jaguar XK120.

  2. Gorgeous photos! What a car…

  3. 0_o

  4. XKSS comes immediately to mind. Others: Blower Bentley, Stutz Bearcat, Bugatti Type 57, Gullwing MB.

  5. some good choices. my own include (though by no means comprehensive) the xkss, aston martin db4 gt, maserati a6gcs/53, 250 gt swb.

  6. What a nice article, this car with these beautiful shots give me chill, thanks for this post Drew !

    Btw we’ve made a new article on the Asphalt Heritage Club website.

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