1947 A.L.C.A. Volpe

Summary

  • Year of manufacture 
    1947
  • Car type 
    Convertible / Roadster
  • Country VAT 
    IT
  • Lot number 
    45
  • Drive 
    LHD
  • Condition 
    Used
  • Location
  • Exterior colour 
    Red

Description

- The Volpe was presented in Rome in March 1947 by the newly founded ALCA (Anonima Lombarda Cabotaggio Aereo) as an inexpensive alternative to the Fiat Topolino. This micro-car, designed to meet the needs of millions of Italians looking to buy their first car after the war, can be considered the first “bubble car”, but in reality it became infamous as one of the most notorious post-war frauds. In 1948, the company was accused of fraudulent bankruptcy, as the managers disappeared with the advance payments from customers who had ordered the car, some 300 million lire, without delivering a single vehicle. According to reports, the few assembled cars were collected from a scrapyard in Piacenza and only some later bought by private individuals, who adapted engines from Vespas or Lambrettas and used them without registering them.
- Bodywork in good condition, incredibly sound. In the various places where the paint has come off you can see the welds of the sheet metal strips that are said to have been salvaged from oil drums, given the shortage of materials soon after the end of the war. Unfortunately, the small bumpers and the original steering wheel are missing, but the front grille with the ‘Volpe’ inscription is still present, and both front lights and instrumentation appear to be original.
- Developed by Gioacchino Colombo, it called for the use of a 124cc two-stroke twin-cylinder engine, mounted at the rear, capable of delivering 6 horsepower, but in reality none of the very few examples produced were equipped with one. Years later, an engine taken from a Vespa 125 was fitted to the model on auction, with some modifications. This engine is no longer present today. A floor-mounted gearbox was also installed, whereas the original design called for a steering wheel-mounted gearbox. On the other hand, the suspension and brakes are probably original, both in terms of size and age.
- It is not known how many Volpi were actually produced, certainly a few dozen. Five of these were entered in the 1947 Mille Miglia, some of which were supposed to be turbocharged, but none of them made it to the start.