ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Alfa Romeo Spider Veloce: An Affordable Classic Italian Sports Car for the Rest of Us

Updated on December 14, 2010
The author's personal car, a 1971 Alfa Romeo Spider Veloce.
The author's personal car, a 1971 Alfa Romeo Spider Veloce.

Are you looking for a sporty classic convertible that you don’t really need but would like to have? A car to cruise around in on those beautiful spring mornings with the wind in your hair and sweet heart by your side. Everyone’s looking for a car like that, whether they admit it or not, why not make it Italian?

Alfa Romeo Spider Veloce (Generation II 1970 – 1983)

Alfa Romeo has a storied and romantic history as many Italian auto manufacturers do, they’ve been building potent sports cars sine the early part of the 20th Century. During the sports car boom of the 50s and 60s Alfa Romeo gained the reputation of a company that allowed many of the technical advances developed in their racing cars to trickle down into their street cars. It’s for that reason that many Alfa Romeos pack much more sophisticated engine and mechanical technology than many of their German and English competitors of the period.

Most people associate the Alfa Romeo Spider with the Dustin Hoffman movie “The Graduate.” No doubt, his Alfa got a lot of screen time in that movie, but the Alfa Romeo Spider we’re going to focus on here is the second generation Spider, similar in many respects, but about ¼ - ½ the price of the Gen I variant seen in that movie.

For the 1970 model year Alfa Romeo released their second generation Spider with a slightly different convertible body than the Gen I. The most notable change was a cut-off tail treatment, known as a Kamm tail, after the German aerodynamicist Wunibald Kamm who, in the 1930s, figured out that a car with a raked front end that lead to an abruptly cut off ‘tail’ could cut through the air with less wind resistance. These cars are as nice to look at as they are to drive.

Alfa Spiders have an all alloy, inline 4 cylinder engines mated to five speed manual transmission, an extremely rare combination in all but the most expensive sports cars of the day. Displacement is just under 2000cc and horsepower is just 132, but thanks to this engine and transmission set up, and their light weight, these cars are fast and a joy to drive.

You’ll race up through all 5 gears before you reach 50 miles per hour, so there is plenty to do and lots of fun to be had even on quiet suburban back streets. The exhaust note sounds like a sports car should, deep and throaty, but not too loud. While everyone else is just tooling around the neighborhood listening to the radio, talking on their phone half asleep, you’ll feel like you’re driving in the Monaco Grand Prix.

The "Kamm" tail, first appeared for the 1970 model year.
The "Kamm" tail, first appeared for the 1970 model year.

What to Look For

When considering an Alfa Spider look out for rust, current rust or evidence of previous rust repair. These cars rust easily and there are plenty of cars out there to choose from, so bide your time until you can find a rust free, or near rust free example. In a driver, a few little bubbles might not be a big deal, but be sure that’s all there is.

There is one common mechanical issues that show up on these cars. The first and second gear synchronizers are notoriously weak in these cars, the things that basically keep the gears from grinding or crunching when downshifting from third to second or from second to first. Crunchy synchros aren’t the end of the world, but you’ll want to have them replaced eventually.

Interior bits and replacement convertible tops are easily sourced and not real expensive, so don’t run away from a car with a tired interior or yellowed back window that’s hard to see out of.

If you’re the kind of person who likes to drive and enjoy cars, but you don’t work on them, that’s fine… but take it to someone who does know and have them perform a pre purchase inspection. It shouldn’t cost you more than about $100, but it will save you a lot more than that in the long run.

When you begin looking for your Spider look up your local Alfa Romeo Owners Club (AROC). Contact one of the club officers and tell them what you’re looking for. Chances are someone in the club will know of an available car, at the very least they could talk to you more in depth about which Spider might be right for you. Local enthusiast clubs for cars like these are invaluable resources for people new to the brand. If you do find a car through the local club chances are it will have been well cared for and maintained. These often end up being some of the best deals out there!


Submit a Comment

No comments yet.


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)