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Alfa Romeo at Its Very Best: the Alfetta 158/159

Alfa Romeo at Its Very Best: the Alfetta 158/159

By Jacopo Villa / 5 Mar 2015
2 Comments

Hard as it may be for young Petrolisti to believe, Alfa Romeo once sat atop the world of Formula 1 racing. Back in the days when "sex was safe and motor racing was dangerous," this Milanese automaker briefly overcame its underdog status and became a source of headaches for its European rivals, taking home Formula 1 championships in 1950 and 1951.

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Gianni Lancia Was a Brave Man, a Leader, an Innovator

Gianni Lancia Was a Brave Man, a Leader, an Innovator

By Jacopo Villa / 5 Mar 2015 / 2 Comments Read More

In just two frenetic years in the 1950s, Lancia laid the foundation for its racing success. Characterized by unique design but marked by misfortune, Gianni Lancia's dreams were but the first glimpse of what would become one of the most successful companies in Italian automotive history.

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A Visit to the Official Alfa Romeo Historic Club

A Visit to the Official Alfa Romeo Historic Club

By Jacopo Villa / 2 Mar 2015 / 16 Comments Read More

Sometimes Jacopo Villa's work is just an excuse for him to get close to wonderful things. He works as a full time automotive journalist, and there's no better excuse to experience great cars and have fun, all while being exactly where his boss tells him to be. His work–if we're still calling it that–recently took him on a visit to the official Alfa Romeo historic club, Scuderia Del Portello, where, among other things, he got an up-close look at an array of special Alfas.

What's the One That Got Away?

What's the One That Got Away?

By Benjamin Shahrabani / 2 Mar 2015
35 Comments

Unless you’re Jay Leno, you just can’t buy every car you covet, nor can you keep every car that comes into your possession. Sometimes, the lack of time, money, or space (or all three) conspire such that a car cannot be purchased, or has to be sold. Sometimes, they just get away... What car do you wish you had never sold, or wished you had purchased, but let slip through your fingers?

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Simplicity Led to the Fiat 500’s Unintentional Charm

Simplicity Led to the Fiat 500’s Unintentional Charm

By Ronald Ahrens / 25 Feb 2015
8 Comments

The original Fiat 500, Italy’s first people’s car, was produced from 1936 to 1955. As The New York Times explained, it was “lovingly dubbed by Italians 'Topolino,' or Mickey Mouse, for its toy-store looks and roller-skate wheels.” And yet, as Ronald Ahrens writes, the 500 somehow transcended its quotidian duties, running in track events, hillclimbs, endurance rallies, and would go on to serve as Karl Abarth's platform for fame and riches.

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Is the 4C Worthy of the Alfa Romeo Badge?

Is the 4C Worthy of the Alfa Romeo Badge?

By Afshin Behnia / 23 Feb 2015 / 44 Comments Read More

For fifteen years, Fiat has been promising that Alfa Romeo would return to the United States. When? The answer was always the same: in two years. Alfa Romeo finally came back in 2008–sort-of–with the very sexy, yet very limited, 8C Competizione but failed to follow it up with a more affordable model to be built in large quantities. That is, until now. But was the wait worth it? One could answer that question by evaluating the new Alfa Romeo 4C's merits and price-performance as a sports car. But that would be useless to an Alfista like me. I simply want to know one thing: does it feel like an Alfa Romeo?

Helplessly Cool Mastroianni Defined Style

Helplessly Cool Mastroianni Defined Style

By Benjamin Shahrabani / 23 Feb 2015 / 1 Comment Read More

An Italian actor who rose to prominence in the 1960's, Marcello Mastroianni became a star within Italian cinema in the 1950's after a stint in the theater, when he caught the attention of Federico Fellini. Mastroianni acted in some of Fellini's biggest movies, including La Dolce Vita and 8 1/2.

Sophia Loren, Spaghetti, and Gullwings

Sophia Loren, Spaghetti, and Gullwings

By Benjamin Shahrabani / 12 Feb 2015 / 7 Comments Read More

From her jewels to her clothing, Sophia Loren clearly had taste with a capital 'T', and is one of the most beautiful and talented actresses to grace the silver screen. “Everything you see I owe to spaghetti”, Loren once said. That must include her classic cars too, then. Loren had several, but perhaps the car she is best known for owning is a 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300SL...

Book Review: Best in Show

Book Review: Best in Show

By Jacopo Villa / 23 Jan 2015
1 Comment

A book on one-off Italian cars is always fun to read, but particularly when it’s an exceptional work of automotive non-fiction and photography. Best in Show is just such a book, covering twenty cars from Corrado Lopresto’s concours-winning collection in chronological order, from the early 1901 Isotta Fraschini to the 1973 DeTomaso Pantera II 7x Montella...

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This is the Secret Pureblood Alfa Romeo Lovers' Collection

This is the Secret Pureblood Alfa Romeo Lovers' Collection

By Petrolicious Productions / 15 Jan 2015 / 13 Comments Read More

If you were just strolling down this tiny street in Milan’s industrialized outskirts, you wouldn't even notice it because it blends so easily with the old factories and buildings. If you were looking for indications along the road, just like you find in Arese, you would be lost somewhere, on some road, in the middle of nowhere, disoriented by the Milanese fog.

He Built This Alfa Romeo Giulia, It Built His Career

He Built This Alfa Romeo Giulia, It Built His Career

By Petrolicious Productions / 13 Jan 2015 / 15 Comments Read More

Most people use their job as a way to get a car. Dorian Valenzuela, however, is not most people: he used his 1970 Alfa Romeo Giulia 1300 Super to land a job, in this case at Singer Vehicle Design, where he helps create that company's bespoke Porsche 911s.