Market 151: Nice Red Spider

Update 10/12/09:  No takers at $34,500 which is a surprise, usually cars that have had this much work lavished on them sell because there is a whole segment of buyers who know you get a lot for free when you buy a restored car.  Isn’t the saying that you buy the restoration and get the car for free? Has a few faults but is as good as or better than cars that have sold for more.  If I were the seller I’d do some light detail work under the hood and relist it next March when everyone has convertible fever.

Giulietta Spider 10103*170689. This car is on eBay right now out of Southern California. Car looks great in the pictures but for the $34,500 buy it now asking price, there are a few details that should be a little better, especially if the claimed outlay of cash is genuine. It does look great though!

spider nose low 170686Very nice angle on the iconic Giulietta Spider. I agree with the seller that the front is a little cleaner without the grill ‘tusks’. Stance looks good and if it handles like it promises then it will be sweet.

spider headlight 170686I have a feeling a high quality camera was at work here. Very nice work getting it to shine like this. Shame they didn’t hunt down a pair of period Carello headlights. I guess that gives the new owner something easy to consider doing.

Auction text: “When I began collecting cars a few years ago, this was my first purchase. And I have loved her dearly ever since. But I’m paring back my collection and it’s time to part ways. This car was the subject of a thorough restoration approximately two years ago that involved investing $29,000 just in parts, to say nothing of the labor costs and the value of the original car which was rust free and in excellent shape to begin with. All in, easily $60,000 has been invested in this car.

She is in beautiful condition both mechanically and cosmetically, starts right up every time and runs smoothly. It will spin the back wheels if you are overzealous in first. Every function of this vehicle from lights, wipers, heater, turn signal, gauges, headlight flashers, etc is fully operational. In summary, this is a well sorted, get in and go car–quite remarkable for a 48 year old car that is one of the last Alfas to be built by hand. If you’re looking for a 98 point concours car that would cost in excess of $100k, then look elsewhere. But if you are looking for a car that turns heads, drives like a dream and puts a smile on your face everytime you open the garage, you could not do better than this.

The paint (Base/Clear Akzo Nobbel on PPG Primers and Sealers) has a beautiful depth and is on a laser straight body. The car has new shocks and springs (centerline lowering springs), new bushings, new front bearings, new rear bearings, driveshaft mounts, and extensive new rubber. The brake system was also completely redone with new master, new shoes and all new wheel cylinders. She also has a brand new Stayfast canvas OEM padded corner soft top on a fully restored top frame. It works and fits as it should and is in beautiful shape.

Below you can see the interior, which is simply stunning. It features all new components from Re-Originals including black seats with red piping, new door skins, Wilton wool red carpet, OEM rubber mats with Alfa logos and the matching trunk mat with logo. These cost $3000 for the materials alone. Although they were pricey, the quality is so exceptional that it is worth every penny and I would use them again anytime.

The chrome on the car was all removed and a total of 70 pieces were sent to the re-chromer at a cost of over $5800. It’s just so nice to have not only the bumpers, but all the door handles and window cranks and every little bit shiny like new! During restoration, she was fitted with new OEM twin headers, CISAM downpipes, a new resonator and new rear muffler. Essentially a completely new exhaust system. The 5-speed transmission was also fully rebuilt and I just installed a new clutch a few months ago. It shifts “like butter!” At the same time, a new heater core was installed with a new heater motor and fresh air hoses. Below you can see the hood and engine bay, all fitted properly. The engine is the larger 1600cc (98bhp) four-cylinder with matching Solex carb. This engine provides 20% more horsepower than the base 1300cc engine and makes the car feel much more alive and responsive. The engine was fully rebuilt with brand new pistons, liners, bearings, gaskets, valves, springs, guides, seals. At the same time, the radiator was refurbished and all new hoses were installed. Everything was done at a cost of about $7000 for the machine work and parts.

Here’s a small shot of the trunk showing the OEM Alfa branded trunk mat. I’ve also installed a Battery Tender so you can plug the car up to a standard electrical outlet and keep the battery maintained at a full charge. This is especially important if you don’t drive the car on a regular basis. Allowing your battery to run down completely is a sure fire way to kill a battery.”

There was more but I left some out. I suspect you get the idea…

spider nose 170686The seller says they “invested” $60,000 in the car. They are selling it for $34,500. I don’t think investment is the right word. Congress would call this thing a toxic asset. Bada-bing, sorry, couldn’t resist.

spider 170686 fendrReally very nice. I would want to climb around under it, but I don’t think anyone would bother to dump this much money in a crappy car to start with. Could be wrong though and would get under there to make sure.

spider back 170686Great trunk shot and I agree it is ‘laser straight’ in the photogeraphs, but would have to inspect it in person. These pictures must be at dusk. All red tail light lenses in this condition are difficult to find.

spider interior 170686Seats look good, no I still don’t like red piping, but will make a concession. Door panels, carpets, dash top etc look good. Gauges need a good cleaning. Hard to believe they spent what ever on the repro seats ($4000?) and didn’t get the gauges cleaned up with new clear rings. Mirror is wrong -at least the glass is.

spider 170686 trunkWhile the paint on the outside of the car looks very good, the paint in the trunk and under the hood is pretty bad. Look around the shock top bolt. I wonder how the installed the new shocks, springs etc without knocking most of the overspray off the nut, buffer and washer. Good news is this wouldn’t be too expensive to fix.

spider engine 170686Clearly the engine compartment was not a priority. Just look at the condition of the firewall portion of the throttle linkage. Again, good news, not expensive or difficult to make right, but at $60K spent this should be better. In places it looks like they just sprayed over whatever grit was present. Engine is a 1600 and said to be rebuilt so non-originality might be a factor for some. Darth Vaders arms style dryer ducting to firewall would be the first thing to go.

A friend of mine sold a nicer Spider of this vintage in a pinch for about $25,000 without putting it up for auction to try and maximize. This car needs to have another $4000 or so and a lot of time put into it to correct its glaring faults, mainly finish under the hood, if the new owner is bothered by them, but all in all it’s a pretty good looking example, easily on par or better than some other low to mid $30K Spiders I’ve tracked of the same era in similar condition, so the  asking price is easily justified.

Similar 1 (worse).

Similar 2 (close).

Similar 3 (better IMHO). It


2 thoughts on “Market 151: Nice Red Spider

  1. I generally find, and for the most parts Matt’s comments dead on the spot. As my son Jose Lionel said, he and his brother Gustavo have grown with these cars since babies and thus they are very knowledgeable on Giulietta’ since from a very early age, as they have been involved in my restoration projects first hand. Albeit, I am guilty as charge, being politically correct does goes a long… way. That said, I completely concur with Matt’s comments regarding the restoration and level of detail that have gone into this specific vehicle. Matt, please know that we do greatly appreciate your willingness to inform the general public regarding these cars. Personally, I do not have the time needed to keep us as inform as you do. My most sincere gratitude for your efforts. Great job! and keep it coming!!!



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