1978 Alfa Romeo Alfasud Giardiniera

It's interesting how some cars come about. Most are designed by committee, others are the result of a lone group of engineers working in their spare time to create something special for enthusiasts. Others, like this Alfa Romeo Alfasud, came about by government policy. The "sud" suffix is Italian for south, the region of Italy where Alfa Romeo and partner Finmeccanica manufactured the vehicle. With a flat four engine and styling by Giorgetto Giugiaro of ItalDesign, this was one of Alfa Romeo's most successful models, with over one million examples sold including the later Sprint versions. Rarely seen in the US, this Giardiniera version gives users a bit more space with a square back. Having undergone a complete restoration, this could arguably be the best, if not only, Alfasud Giardiniera on these shores.

Year: 1978
Model: Alfasud Giardiniera
Engine: 1.5 liter flat-4
Transmission: 5-speed manual
Mileage: 600 mi
Price: Reserve auction

CLICK FOR DETAILS:1978 Alfa Romeo Alfasud Giardiniera

My first new car ever was a 1972 Alfasud 1.2 in grigio (grey) with rosso (red) Skai (Vinyl) interior. I loved it. Unfortunately my then-girlfriend destroyed it on the German Autobahn a couple of years later. Ever since, I wanted another one and moving to the USA in 1985 did not make it any easier. To complicate it even more, this time I wanted a Giardiniera, a Wagon, and it could not be red or white. After searching for many years, I succeeded and found this wagon in 2003 in Northern Italy. My friend in Germany, who owns a well known restoration shop, Klassik Garage in Bad Saulgau picked it up for me and took it to his shop for a careful evaluation.

Being an Alfa Romeo it had to have some rust and even though it was in fantastic shape for an Alfasud it did have some. Thank goodness, the rear hatch was in excellent shape, but the Sud needed fenders, rocker panels and rear quarters. By then we decided to do a COMPLETE restoration. Let me give you the details:

Body:
Stripped down to bare metal, installed OEM front fenders, remanufactured rear quarter panels and welded body panels where necessary. Complete repaint outside, partially inside and underneath in factory color "bruno cilento".

Engine:
There were a few 1.5 liter Boxer engines in the USA and before Alfa Romeo left the US market in 1995 they were converted from solid lifters to hydraulic lifters. I could never find out why these engines were here. I found my engine advertised on the Alfa Romeo BB in Florida. A gentleman wanted to use it in an ultra light plane, but never finished the installation, because unfortunately he passed away.

We shipped it to Germany, changed the timing belts, water pump, spark plugs and installed it. Right now it has about 600 miles. It has two Dellorto carburetors. Since they don't have a choke, it's very temperamental when cold. It has been sitting for a while in my storage and I noticed that the carburetors are not completely synchronized at less than half throttle. Once you open up completely, they are perfect and the car "goes like stink." The sound is perfect too. A new muffler was installed and it has very nice dual tailpipes.

Transmission:
We found a brand new Alfasud TI 5 speed on display at a German traffic school, bought it and installed it. Unfortunately it lasted only 20 kilometers and disintegrated after that. Luckily there was an Alfa specialist close by who had a good used TI 5 speed in stock and this one was installed. It shifts perfectly without any grinding or noises.

Interior:
We located a new, correct Series 2 dashboard and installed it. The seats were in tan Vinyl, which I really disliked. An Italian upholstery shop had some OEM Alfa Romeo cloth in orange and black, which was used in GTVs and Montreals. We had it shipped and the seats were re-upholstered in orange/black which really compliments the color "bruno cilento" perfectly.

The door panels were also covered in black Vinyl and orange cloth, but they were already warped when I got the car. I am enclosing a set of "better" door panels. The roof liner is original and in good shape. The car has the original rubber floor, which shows some wear especially on the passenger side. It also has a set of period correct Italian rubber floor mats.

After a six year restoration the car was shipped from Bremerhaven to Port Hueneme and imported with all the paperwork into the USA. Since it's a 1978 no EPA or DOT conversions were required. We displayed it at the Concorso Italiano in Monterey 2011 and a lot of people complimented the car. It is the only Alfasud Giardiniera in the USA and very few are left in the rest of the world. I am certain that this is one of the best ones in existence.

It has a 1978 Washington YOM (year of manufacture) plate which does not need renewal ever. Since it is over 25 years old, it's also smog exempt.

NOTE TO CALIFORNIA BUYERS:

I will NOT provide a smog certificate and I will NOT sell the car to a CA resident due to the extremely unfriendly CA smog requirements for old cars.

NOTE TO ALL OUTSIDE OF CALIFORNIA BUYERS:

I will gladly assist with shipping within or outside the USA. Since the car is now 36 years old there is no warranty expressed or implied.

You don't see many Alfasuds around these days, even in Europe. Many examples fell victim to rust, leaving them in a state beyond repair. A quick scan of some classifieds in Europe reveal some clean, low mileage Alfasuds for sale between the $5,000 to $10,000 USD mark. A car like this is a hard one to value stateside, but there are certainly a few rabid Alfa fans out there who may drive up the bids.

-Paul

Posted under: Alfa Romeo
Dated: Apr 02 2014

2 Comments

  1. rik dircx says:

    Dear Sir ,

    Would it be possible to ship the car back to Europe ( Belgium ) . If possible what would be the expected shipment and import tax cost ? I could be really interested in the car. What price level are you expecting for selling this car. Are the original papers from Italy/Germany still available ? Also the original Italian service book ?
    Could you send me some additional photos please ?

    Thanks in advance
    Rik Dircx
    Antwerp
    Belgium
    00 32 494 56 03 26

  2. Paul says:

    The cars featured here on the site ARE NOT our own. Please click on any of the large pictures in the post above to be directed to the auction and to get in contact with the seller.

    Regards,

    Paul