Market Finds: This Perfect-In-Blue Alfa Romeo Montreal Is The Perfect Weekend Getaway

This Perfect-In-Blue Alfa Romeo Montreal Is The Perfect Weekend Getaway

Andrew Golseth By Andrew Golseth
April 5, 2016
7 comments

Photography courtesy of Auctionata

My 1967 Alfa Romeo GT Veloce will be Rosso Corsa, despite my gearhead friends attempting to convince me to respray the car in its original white finish. I stubbornly say, “It’s my first Italian car, it has to be red!” You could say I’m unoriginal, uninspired, or boring but I just love 105 coupes in red. Yet, that logic would go completely out the window if my rusty project were a certain vintage V8 Alfa, because if it was it’d be blue—just like this 1971 Alfa Romeo Montreal.

I’ve yet to make it to Canada but for whatever reason when I hear “Montreal” I see images of the city lying next to the Saint Lawrence River—the metropolis sandwiched between the blue sky, green mountain, and waterfront. Perhaps, subconsciously, that’s why I think the Alfa Romeo Montreal looks best in Le Mans Blue?

What I am certain of is this: these Bertone 2+2 look good in any color.

At the 1967 Expo 67 hosted in Montreal, Canada, Alfa Romeo unveiled its new concept coupe, displaying two at the event. Designed by Marcello Gandini of Bertone, the sleek 2+2 front engine, rear drive prototypes were based off the 105 series Alfa chassis and powered by 1.6-liter four-cylinders derived from the Giulia Ti. The cars were displayed without an official name, so spectators began referring to the new Italian GT as The Montreal Car.

The production Montreal arrived three years later, debuting at the 1970 Geneva Auto Show. Although aesthetically similar to the prototipo, the production version turned out even better than the concept—something that rarely happens. Unlike the two ’67 showpieces, the road going Montreal was equipped with a 2.6-liter V8 and five-speed manual transmission carried over from the 33 Stradale. With 200 horsepower and a 7,000 rpm redline, the Montreal was good for a 15 second quarter mile time, and its GTV underpinnings made it quite the backroad dancer.

Alfa Romeo constructed the chassis in Arese, shipped the rolling assemblies to Bertone in Caselle, then finally to Grugliasco for upholstery and final production steps. This manufacturing process didn’t help keep costs down, making the Montreal even more expensive than the already established Jaguar E Type and Porsche 911. Likely due to the production complexities and high cost of entry, less than 4,000 Montreal were built.

Alfa refused to complete North American emissions testing, so Montreal were never officially sold in the United States or Canada—funny, considering where the car debuted and subsequently received its name. Perhaps it’s a blessing Alfa didn’t bring the Montreal to North America—it would have likely received those bulky safety bumpers. Over the years, a number of Montreal have been imported via the classic car exemption…or other less legal means.

This example was originally sold in Germany, where it currently resides, though now in Berlin awaiting auction. The engine and transmission are believed to be original but due to the manufacturing process, powertrain numbers don’t correspond with chassis digits—making it difficult to distinguish what’s original and what’s not. Either way, with nearly 94,000 kilometers (~58,000 miles) since new, we’re happy to see it’s lived a driven life.

Some of the brightwork and beige interior show minor signs of use, but overall, the condition looks far better than most drivers. Underhood, the engine compartment appears tidy and the rubber seals throughout look solid. Auctionata notes the common corrosion areas are void of rot and the original lighting equipment is in good shape.

Considering what 33 Stradale trades hands for, this Montreal seems like a bargain for the same Italian Opera. With exotic looks, foreign market exclusivity, and good colors, we say it’s about time someone took this Bertone GT on a road trip to Montreal.

History
– Sold new in Germany
– One of an estimated 3,917 produced
– Bertone design

Specifications
~200 horsepower, 2-liter SPICA fuel-injected 90 degree dry-sump V8, five-speed ZF manual transmission, double wishbone coil spring and damper front suspension, live axle rear suspension with limited slip differential, and four-wheel disc brakes. Wheelbase: 92.5 inches.

Vehicle information
Chassis no.: AR1425131
Engine no.: 15426378

Valuation
Auction house: Auctionata
Starting price: €40,000.00 ($57,000 Usd.)
Price realized: Auction on April 22

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Guitar Slinger
Guitar Slinger

None of my Italian stallions were ever red of any shade . White / Blue / Yellow .. and Yellow again . Never red ! A point I take great pride in . As far as Montreal the city … well … it is one of my top four North American cities * but … ahh .. other than Mont Royal … which is more hill than mountain … they’s nary a mountain to be seen … green or otherwise . As far as Montreal the car .. safety bumpers or no … its not much of a looker …… Read more »

Derek Entesano
Derek Entesano

Of course you are entitled to your opinion but you do come across as a armchair critic. So you’ve owned a few Alfas, that doesn’t mean you know anything about the Montreal. What are your qualifications on bagging the Montreal other than some bandwagon opinion about it being a dog? Have you driven a well sorted one? They are great to drive. Travel at speed very comfortably, great pickup, sound fantastic and have unique styling. My only qualm is the heavy steering. Spica requires a mech with knowledge but I have driven one also with EFI which was a lovely… Read more »

Pedro Macedo
Pedro Macedo

@ Derek Entesano: I wouldn’t be surprised if this troll is just some kid in his parent’s basement with internet access and too much free time on his hands. Reminds me of an article I once read on Jalopnik – http://jalopnik.com/how-to-spot-someone-whos-lying-on-an-internet-car-forum-1691704100

Sam N
Sam N

He’s also chef at Le Bernardin, chief of neurosurgery at Mayo, 2 time winner of the 12 Hours of Sebring and a renowned horological expert. What a savant!

B Bop
B Bop

Sam, that was funny but not that far off the mark regarding the GS fantasy train. A few years ago when he called himself TJ Martin and then later Martin James he was just off the charts ridiculous causing him to be kicked off the site. After a brief absence, he slithered back as Guitar Slinger and the trail of slime remains to this day. His comments about dating a European Playboy model and driving her fathers Matra, as well as some guy letting him drive his 62 Ferrari 250 GTO are classics. Maybe his previous comments are still in… Read more »

Sam N
Sam N

Hilarious. My oversight; failed to mention the horse breeding and 12M yachts. God bless the internets.

Jim Spackman
Jim Spackman

I certainly can’t forget the Montreal, there’s usually at least on in our workshop! Best in Orange!