Market 120: 101 Giulietta Spider ‘not’ to restore

Update 6/1/09: It seems that I, or the multitude of red Spiders, scared the bidders off and this car ended at $18,100 with 35 bids, reserve not met.  I think better pictures and a ‘just the facts’ description would help it out.

Giulietta Spider 10103*171685, 1315*010467. This 1961 101 Spider was on eBay and ended last night at $18,100 reserve not met with 35 bids. The car has had lots of care recently but retains the charming if somewhat rustic patina I usually aspire to have my cars show.

171685 noseNose is a little chipped up but over-all the condition is good. Silver always looks good with chrome and clear lenses. Why are photobucket pictures always so bad?

171685 sideRide height is good, if a touch high at the back. Door and trim fit looks great.

171685 backBumper, trunk lock, hinges and all looks just right for this car. That is one of the better fitting trunk lids I’ve seen.

171685 rocker cornerThis is the defining area for these cars and to a lesser extent the trunk under the battery. This looks perfect, no rocker replacement required.

Auction text: “This car took me a long time to find. The proverbial one owner car from California. I have owned it for over 3 years now and it still gives endless pleasure. These single carb Alfas start first time every time. Last year I completed the Targa Florio in my Giulietta Ti without missing a beat and this Spider is better. My reason for sale, something very rare has been offered to me and I need to sell to fund this. I know that when cars in this condition jump through the 6 figure barrier I will regret it. I was recently at Essen Techno-Classico and saw a 750 Veloce change hands for such a price and as always the ‘lesser’ cars will follow suit. My Alfas have ranged from Giulietta’s (Sprint/Spider/SS/Ti) to Giulias (GT/GTJ/GTC/Saloon/SS) to 2000′s/2600′s through Alfasuds, 33′s, 145′s, 164′s. 147′s, GTV’s. The Giulietta Spider has to be rated as a work of art and a driving pleasure.

So to this car. As stated bought when I was in North Carolina. At the time the car went to Krause and England and was completely gone through. They performed the maintenance and since moving to Canada has been serviced by an Alfa specialist here. Always starts, always fun, always turns heads.

THE GOOD : This car is solid. Please check out the shut lines. I have done my best to photograph them, they are superb, doors, bonnet, boot. Sorry I am from Wales…doors, hood, trunk. Look at the jack points, incredible. The paint on the rear end of the car is worn, it is worn from the original owner proudly leaning against the car for years. I swear you can almost make out the brand of jeans worn by him. The trunk ‘suffers’ the same wear. Every nick, ding and pinch is for all to see yet the car is remarkably straight. There is a bumper sticker expiry 1981! The car drives nice and straight pulling strongly in all gears. It stops fine and in a straight line despite drums all round. Brand new ragtop, not vinyl. Refreshed engine and gearbox though still a slight 2nd crunch when cold. All gauges work as do each switch. Bushings all solid. Each of those nipples greased twice a year. Plenty of tread on all tires. Mota Lita steering wheel and wooden period gearknob.

THE BAD : This is so difficult to say. The chrome isn’t perfect but then neither is it rusted/deeply pitted. I wouldn’t want the chrome perfect. The radio is undetermined. Speakers look good but I think aftermarket, albeit a market years ago. The carpets are red, amazingly there are patches of red vinyl by the spare tire and I think that the interior may have been originally red. Small tear in passenger seat vinyl, 2 inch but not on seating surface. The sponge in the seats is old and creates a yellow dandruff but all part of the charm. The crunch in 2nd gear but again all positively Alfa. The exhaust though functional seems to be weldedin odd and sods. Re-originals will sell you new mild steel for not a great deal. Some rubbers are not perfect.

THE UGLY : Here is one for the Alfisti. The VIN in Fusi says the car was ’61. Tabucchi ’62. The title supports ’62. There is nothing ugly about this car cosmetically or mechanically.

In summary a wonderful old car with charm and character in spades. Remember IT IS ONLY ORIGINAL ONCE. I cannot dictate what the new owner will do with this car. $3000 on a paint job, $2000 on chrome, $1000 for leather seats and you have a trailer queen. You have also lost a piece of history but then I am not to dictate.

DUE DILIGENCE : I am selling some of my fondest memories in the hope to purchase something Mille Miglia elligible. Please please do not waste my time. If you are a day dreamer and heaven knows we all do, please go find a prancing horse or a raging bull to waste time on and leave me and my little Alfa in peace. I may add that this may be your life’s savings/dream car. I am a doctor not a mechanic, please come and see the car or get it appraised so you know what you are getting.”

171685 trunk insideTrunk floor looks respectable but I would seal the surface rust and repaint it.

171685 interiorYellowed gauges, modern radio, British (Motolita) type wood wheel, Vitaloni side mirror, non original carpet/seat/door panel colors. Not a big deal for an unrestored driver but worth considering if you wanted to fix this up a little.

171685 engineNot great, not bad, but functional and ready to drive. Note the overspray on the rubber hood stops and lack of heating or vent ducting. Some improvement could be made without crossing over into the realm of restoration.

The final bid was fairly strong and likely close to meeting reserve. If it were me selling it I would probably see if I could work with the high bidder to make a sale, especially if they were in agreement about this being a car not to restore.

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2 thoughts on “Market 120: 101 Giulietta Spider ‘not’ to restore

  1. I bought the car and am the current owner in Southwestern Ontario. I have not restored it but am driving it. The paint is looking tired, lots of patina in this paint. Still thinking about restoring it or somewhat. Would like to paint it but everyone seems to say leave it as it is. I would like some comments and ideas on what to do, paint or not, restore or not. Drives well but seems to bottom out when two passengers in the car where something hits the tires. Not sure what it needs, shocks or springs.

    • Mike,

      Congrats on what looked like a great car! I am in the same boat with my Sprint. The car runs and drives very well and looks presentable, but the paint is a 30 year old respray that is patchy and flat. Everyone tells me to leave it alone but I more and more think about painting it. The bottoming: have you looked for where the tires are hitting the body? Post a question on the 750/101 yahoo group and you’ll probably get lots of suggestions about what to look at/ change.

      Thanks for the note,
      Matt

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