The Turin Motor Show of 1963, the 45th Salone dell’Automobile, was an event of considerable note. For many, it is most memorable for the unveiling of the Scaglione-designed Lamborghini 350 GTV, a prototype grand tourer that led to the first production Lamborghini, the 350 GT. But in another, quieter corner of the show floor, Alfa Romeo was unveiling its latest prototype, the 2600 Sprint Zagato Coupé.
Featuring an uprated, 145bhp version of the the six-cylinder, twin-cam engine found in the Giulietta, the ‘SZ’, with its Zagato body, was nearly 140kg lighter than the standard 2600 Sprint. These changes provided both improved handling and better acceleration – precisely those areas where the standard 2600 was deemed to be somewhat lacking. Drivers’ cars and indeed sought-after luxury items, just 105 examples left the factory priced at 3,970,000 lire. Such a price was out of reach for most in 1965, but the car's rarity and timeless styling have undoubtedly played leading roles in securing ‘future classic’ status.
In 2015, Turin will once again host a motor show – its first for 15 years. It's a free event, open to the public and located in the Parco del Valentino. A month prior to this event, the Bonhams Spa Classic Sale on 24 May includes this white 1965 Alfa Romeo 2600 Sprint Zagato Coupé. Offered in ‘very good’ unrestored condition, with black leather interior, it comes with a pre-sale estimate of £110,000 - £160,000. We feel this is a relatively modest amount for a car that, arriving at Turin’s comeback event, would turn more heads than most.