Sidelined Project: 1971 Alfa Romeo GTV

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As hobby car owners, we can understand all too easily the feeling of being overwhelmed or out of time, money and space. I can’t say whether this is the case for the seller of this 1971 Alfa Romeo GTV here on eBay, but it sounds like he’s throwing in the towel and thankfully, letting someone else take over the restoration of this classic Alfa. From this angle, the garage looks delightfully messy and while the car looks cozy, finding it a new home sooner than later will ultimately be better for all involved. Thanks goes to Jim S for the tip!

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Alfas are an unknown quantity to me. I’ve never come close to owning one, nor have I had anyone in my immediate network drive one with some regularity. I do know they can rust just by looking at them the wrong way, but this one is solid, according to the seller. I’m immediately drawn to the period-correct front air dam in the first photo, and then to the slick upholstery job on the interior. The seller does note, however, it’s not correct for the car despite the sport buckets being in fine condition.

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The seller also notes that a previous owner claimed to have restored the car years ago, hence the largely corrosion-free condition. Not much is said about the motor, but the engine bay is quite tidy and free from ugly wiring or oil staining. The paint inside the bay looks good enough that the aforementioned restoration possibly included an engine-out repsray, but that’s just a guess. Regardless, the seller still had plans to respray the car and fix a dent on the rear end that looks like it was caused by something larger than the riding mower.

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From this angle, it’s not hard to see why people love vintage Alfas. It’s a dead-sexy car, but that rear-end damage concerns me. It was significant enough that the kink in the body looks like the kind that could pop the trunk floor or put a bubble in the roof. This is pure speculation on my part, but the fact that the rear bumper is missing would make me want to ask a few follow-up questions about what caused the rear damage. There’s 15 bids with the reserve unmet, so it’s not stopping some Alfa-holics from trying to bring this project home. Do any of our shop experts have an opinion on the bodywork needs?

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  1. wagon master

    Like the analogy of boat ownership ….. the happiest days of my life were the day I bought my Alfa, and the day I sold it!

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  2. monsieur le baton

    12 years ago was about when those tyres were fitted – pirelli p6000’s – also known as nail magnets – mustve been a tread pattern fault as any nail or screw caught in the tread always ended up in a puncture – can spot that tread pattern anywhere –

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  3. DolphinMember

    This could be the best way to get into an Alfa coupe that has come along in a while. The work needed looks like it could be minimal, if what you can see of the body and trunk floor are representative of the rest. The body gaps look like they might not be perfect but that’s not a dealbreaker if the body is really as unrusty as it looks.

    The seller says he has a video of the engine running so that should help. The seats have been recovered incorrectly but you can forgive that if the rest of the car is good. For only about $6K (so far) for an apparently unrusty ’70s Alfa coupe that’s readily importable into the US it’s hard to complain.

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  4. Ian

    Looks like a solid start. This one will go high

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  5. Aaron

    Is there’s that much stuff still on to of the car when they took the pictures, I’d hate to see what it looked like before.

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  6. squealey healey

    Too bad its not where eBay says it is. Qualicum Beach, BC, is only 20 klicks from where I live. Calgary, Alberta is more like 1,299 klicks and an expensive ferry ride away.

    Those dime sized bubbles in the paint almost always hide a rust through of the underlying metal. Anyone paying big bucks, for me, more than $4,000, is in for an expensive surprise.

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  7. BradL

    First off, I wouldn’t worry much about the dent in the rear. A hit from the rear will buckle the fender over the rear wheel well before it ever reaches the roof. The dent to the right of the tail light, though, tells a lot about the car.

    What I’d be worried about is what is under the paint around that small dent. While the silver paint looks good, the green paint below shows lots or surface rust. You can assume the body was not prepped properly before the silver paint was applied, and that the rust is everywhere. This also means those few rust bubbles are the tip of the iceberg. Without photos of the sills and undercarriage, there’s no guesses as to what you’ll find.

    Besides the body, this car has a few oddities. The hanging front turn signals and large marker lights suggest this is a USA model GTV. The barely legible “105.51” on the firewall plate confirms it. The Spica fuel injection has been replaced with Webers, which is a plus to some, but not the purists. The seats are from a RHD Euro GTV (the adjustable headrest is for the passenger only.) It has a later, less desirable, grille. It’s missing the C-pillar badges and the rear bumper, which has the license plate lights. It’s also missing the radiator overflow bottle. Those Vialoni mirrors would have to go. Also, I’d also be curious as to why the battery was moved to the rear.

    It MIGHT be a good way into an Alfa GTV, bust it also might be a nightmare. A PPI is a must.

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    • BradL

      I just noticed the rear bumper hanging on something to the left of the car. It looks like it might be fairly straight.

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  8. stillrunners

    Don’t know much about Alfa’s but I do like these….good looking coupe.

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