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Alfa Romeo 147 and GT Special Editions - (Australia)
July 21st, 2008
For most car makers the choice of a name for an exclusive edition is nothing more than a term to separate it from lesser versions in its range, but when Alfa Romeo uses the Monza name as it has on newly launched versions of the Alfa Romeo 147 and Alfa Romeo GT models, it is a clear reference to the unique history of Alfa Romeo that makes it impossible to separate from motorsport and the history of the car.
Of course Monza, the home of Italian motorsport, has seen many classic Alfa Romeo victories since it opened in 1922, including Ascari’s Grand Prix win in 1924, Brilli-Peri in 1925, Campari and Nuvolari in 1931, Nuvolari in 1932, Fagioli in 1933, Wimille in 1948, Farina in 1950 and Lauda in Brabham-Alfa Romeo in 1978. Wins at Monza also contributed to Alfa Romeo winning the first Formula One Championship and the first post-war Formula One Championship. And this is just Formula One; Monza has seen countless other race wins across all classes and types for Alfa Romeo.
So it is no surprise that Alfa Romeo has applied the Monza name to special versions of its key models. Perhaps, more of a surprise is that to find the first Alfa Romeo with Monza name, automotive historians have to go all the way back to 1933 and the Alfa Romeo 8C 2300 Monza, the performance version of Alfa Romeo classic sports car and which the legendary Tazio Nuvolari drove in many races in the 1930s. Thus the Monza name spread beyond its namesake race track to wins in classic races across Europe including three consecutive wins at Le Mans, wins at Spa, the Mille Miglia, the Targa Florio and the Monaco Grand Prix and it introduced another legend to the world – a yet to become famous team cut its teeth on the Alfa Romeo 8C 2300 Monza: Scuderia Ferrari.
Coming up to date, the Monza name is applied in 2008 to the Alfa Romeo 147 and the Alfa Romeo GT, providing them with yet another link to Alfa Romeo’s illustrious history and defining them as the most sort-after versions of their respective models.
The Alfa Romeo GT, the Italian car makers glamorous coupe, is immediately recognizable in its Monza form with its unique 18 inch alloy wheels, which reveal its red painted calipers, while the external chrome, including the historic Alfa Romeo ‘shield’ is fitted with satin effect chrome which, in this variant, is also used on the door mirrors. Chrome is also used on the exhaust pipe and – on manual versions – the gear knob, while rear parking sensors add convenience to the excitement of driving the GT. Inside there is unique red-effect instrumentation, high-backed sports leather racing seats in hand crafted soft Italian leather with red stitching that extends to the Alfa Romeo logo stitched on the headrests.
Fitted with the Alfa Romeo 2.0 litre JTS engine, the Alfa Romeo GT Monza has a recommend retail price of $53,990 in manual form and $55,990 with direct from Formula One Selespeed gearbox.
With added value of up to $6,000, the Alfa Romeo 147 Monza is, if anything, an even more remarkable proposition and it is also available right across the 147 range. Like the Alfa GT Monza it has a unique style of 18 inch alloy wheels, sports leather racing seats, chrome-tipped exhaust, a chrome gear knob on manual versions, red brake calipers, satin chrome on the door mirrors and sports pedals, but it also adds a rear spoiler.
The 147 Monza range opens with the three door Twin Spark at $36,990 in manual form and $38,990 with the Selespeed gearbox, the five door is $38,990 and $40,990 for manual and Selespeed respectively, while at the top of the range is the high performance Turbo Diesel, the Alfa Romeo 147 JTD Monza at $41,990.