For Sale: 1966 Alfa Romeo Duetto Spider ($39,500)
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1966 Alfa Romeo Duetto Spider ($39,500)

Manuel Minassian By Manuel Minassian
May 24, 2016

Some people really love it, some people really don’t.  The Duettos shape has been debated by enthusiasts for years, but regardless of where you stand on the issue, it is undeniably unique.

1966 Alfa Romeo Duetto Spider

PRICE: $39,500

Battista Farina’s Final Design

The Duetto’s design, which was Battista ‘Pinin’ Farina’s final and parting gift to the automotive world, was inspired by a three previous Pininfarina design studies.

The first of which was the Alfa Romeo Superflow concept, which was built on the chassis of Fangio’s Mille-raced Alfa Romeo 6C 3000 CM.  With this iteration, you can see the origins of the covered headlamps and likely the influence for the nose and bulge treatment which found its way onto the 1966 road car.

The next concept version, the Alfa Romeo Spider Super Sport (Superflow III), is where the Duetto earns its nickname of ‘boat tail’ or “Ossi di Seppia” (the Cuttlefish in Italian).  This was the debut of the controversial rounded tail and also featured more pronounced scalloped side panelling.  Things were shaping up nicely.

The final inspiration came from the Giulietta SS Spider Aerodinamica.  The body approaches its final shape, losing the dual cowls on the rear.  This concept was built on the shorter Giulietta chassis and features hidden headlamps, which we must say looks absolutely brilliant.

Final Result

The Duetto ultimately debuted to mixed reviews on the styling, where Road and Track felt it was a “contrived design with meaningless styling gimmicks.”  ‘Competitively’ priced just under a Jaguar E-Type and double the price of a Triumph TR4, it’s not surprising the Duetto took some time to be appreciated.  50 years later though, we maintain the shape is simple, clean, and well balanced and dare we say, the prettiest of the Alfa Spiders (gasp).

The Car

The Duetto is fitted with Alfa’s 1.6L twin cam with dual side-draft Weber carbs outputting 108 HP.  The car also features a wider heavy-duty front suspension and disc brakes all around.

This ‘Black Plate’ Duetto for sale is in outstanding condition, and comes with a few subtle performance modifications that make the car competitive against the more powerful 2 liter cars.  This car was also shown at Alfa Romeo’s press event at the LA Auto Show.

Condition

We’ve broken the car’s condition down by section.

Exterior Highlights

Exterior Blemishes

Interior Highlights

Interior Blemishes

Mechanical Highlights

Mechanical Issues

Restoration

The car underwent a sympathetic restoration in 2009 and includes Veloce inspired performance upgrades.

Body

Engine

Suspension

Brakes

Other

Originality

The car was originally blue, put resprayed in Alfa Red.  The motor is believed to be original.

Documentation

The car only comes with documentation from the current owner.

Ownership Timeline

The car is believed to have 3 or 4 owners, and is a California black plate car.

The latest owner, Manuel Minasssian, has owned the car since 2004 in Los Angeles, CA.

Our Thoughts

Turnkey:  If you haven’t noticed, we have are partial to cars that can be enjoyed immediately.

Pininfarina Did it Right:  We love Duettos, frankly.  They are rarer than the Kamm tail spiders and just a bit more special.  The boat tail was only produced for 3 years and is just not a shape you see everyday and that will likely affect its market value in the future.

It’s a Sleeper: This Duetto has actually attended a few of our rallies in the Los Angeles backroads and the performance modifications are the real deal.  Tastefully done, the combination of the Veloce parts with the upgraded suspension makes the 1600 that much more exciting.

Get Inspired

You know we couldn’t do this post without mentioning The Graduate, right?

Meet the Seller

This car is for sale by Manuel Minassian, an Alfaholic collector and Previous Petrolicious subject feature.  Check out his film below.

PRICE: $39,500

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