Live Auctions

One Of Only 88! 1952 Alfa Romeo 1900 Cabriolet

We are covering this rare Alfa Romeo again because it has changed hands since it was last listed. JO

We feature barn finds and garage finds all the time, what would you expect, right? Well, some of those finds aren’t always genuine. The seller parks a car in a barn or a garage for a bit and then decides to sell it and voila’, a Barn Find. Here’s the real deal, a genuine garage find in the form of a 1952 Alfa Romeo 1900C. It is located, now, in Astoria, New York and is available here on Gullwing Motor Cars for $267,000 (gulp!). Thanks to Araknid78 for this great discovery!

While the Alfa Romeo 1900 (1950-1959) is not a particularly rare automobile (approximately 21K), the cabriolet version, designed by Pinin Farina, only saw 88 copies. This rarity spent its first fourteen years in Germany and in 1966, its most recent owner brought it to New Hampshire where it was driven sporadically. The pictured garage became this Alfa’s domicile from 1983 until now.

While appearing to be intact, there is a healthy coat of surface rust covering is cabriolet’s faded ivory finish, a finish that is claimed to not be original as records from a prior 1964 sale indicate that blue was the exterior color. Unfortunately, the rust extends to the chrome-plated bits, including the distinctive Alfa grille. The body panels, themselves, all appear to be straight with no sign of crash damage or serious rot-through. Fortunately, the convertible top frame is present and hopefully still serviceable – it’s probably not a commonly sourced item!

The engine is advertised as being a TIPO 1308 which is a 2.0 liter, DOHC, in-line four. It is “sought after” vs. the smaller TIPO 1306 which is a 1.9-liter motor. The 61K mile engine looks as if it has been dormant for a very long time. The transmission is a steering column shifted four-speed manual.

The interior is in pretty rough shape. It’s basically finished off in burgundy which wouldn’t have lined up with this Alfa’s supposedly prior shade of blue. Perhaps it has been changed? There are a few older images of this car included in the listing, and even though they are black and white photos, they don’t indicate that this car was ever blue unless it was a very pale shade. Anyway, back to the interior, it’s about as one would expect for a car that has been sitting, presumedly, in top-down mode, in a garage since 1983. The white painted dash definitely appears to be a respray as the paint is peeling in a fashion that looks like the undersurface wasn’t properly prepared. There is a large opening in the center of the dash where something has been removed, an original style radio perhaps? It looks like a later added receiver has been attached, crookedly, to the bottom edge of the dash. The interior is going to require, like the exterior, a complete makeover.

I’m not sure how one would value such a rarity but north of a quarter mil. seems steep, especially considering all of the work and investment this Alfa Romeo is going to need. That said, the seller is no stranger to rare cars in poor condition so he probably has a pretty good idea of its before and after value. In spite of the challenge, and expense, I hope someone (with deep pockets!) takes this Alfa on, it’s too rare to just languish and deteriorate further, wouldn’t you agree?


  1. Howard Kerr

    A blue Italian car with a red interior is not all that unusual…tho usually it is dark blue with an oxblood colored interior.

    Like 2
  2. Terrry

    Obviously, rust is equal opportunity. It doesn’t care about nationality or financial status.

    Like 1
  3. pebblebeachjudge

    There are so many nice Alfas , and this would be a good one for this price if it was an older restoration and not a project. Otherwise, a very expensive restoration on cabriolet 4 cylinder Alfa cost $200K .PininFarina bodies are very bread and butter , rarity in many cases doesn’t add value when 88 is a production run. A touring body is more attractive. This one died at last years Gooding sale. Real value now is $100K less This is a heavy car to drive, not fast and cumbersome .

    Like 4
  4. Doyler

    This has been on the gullwing site for a long, LONG time.

    Like 1
  5. PeterfromOz

    This is the type of car that the Alfa factory should buy and have its apprentices repair as part of their training over several years

    Like 1
  6. PRA4SNW PRA4SNW Member

    This has already been featured here at Barn Finds, as recent as December 2020.
    How soon we all forget…..

    Like 1
  7. pebblebeachjudge

    Having returned from Pebble Beach I can comment on this Alfa, and how it places into the pricing , marketing and buzz of an unrestored car. It’s purely a car collector world of speculators now, the old guard collectors are gone. All I heard was ”what’s it worth” and what ”rich guy” owns it the entire weekend. It was sickening actually. There is no more class or elegance at that event, turn the page and head to Europe for the real shows. A few unrestored cars ( Maserati A6G Frua) went up for sale again , and died. The market on these are driven by finding a ”live wire” in the ego crowd that knows nothing about what they are buying, or cares. That’s why these unrestored cars are hyped, to speculators. A car like this Alfa n1900 has a ”Real Time” RT value, and a ”live-wire” LW value that the sellers pray for. What reality doesn’t hit right away after a buy are the restoration bills, which go up to multiples of the value of the car. At the job end no one really knows the result. There is no ”doing” a short cut on such a car as this Alfa, no half measure. Even if you spend the $$$$ doesn’t mean the car will ever be like the Maserati A6G (red) on the green this past weekend – a restoration that cost him $600,000 and resulted in an over restored car. Finding the ”right” opportunity is just luck, not illusion that you got lucky at an auction or on the internet !

    Like 2
  8. Gary Rhodes

    I wouldn’t give $250,000.00 for it restored. I guess my nose isn’t that high in the air.

  9. Jay McCarthy

    To be honest I have never understood the appeal of Italian cars, yes they have beautiful lines but they just require too much attention and money and it’s a constant need
    As far as this Alfa is concerned I am positive a charter member of the more money than sense club will step up

  10. Bill herwig

    Good luck!

  11. Jerry

    267 Large?? Haha, Hoho……

Leave A Comment

RULES: No profanity, politics, or personal attacks.

Become a member to add images to your comments.


Keep me in the conversation via email. Or subscribe without commenting.