Unquestionably one of the most desirable of all Alfa Romeos, the Giulietta Sprint Zagato, or ‘SZ’ for short, was designed with racetrack success as a priority. Alfa’s successful Giulietta range had debuted in 1954 with the arrival of the Bertone-styled Sprint coupé, the Berlina saloon did not appear until the succeeding season. Veloce models with improved performance followed, and the agile Giulietta SV quickly established an enviable record in production car racing, notable victories including a Gran Turismo class win in the 1956 Mille Miglia.
Nevertheless, to fully exploit the car’s potential, lighter and more aerodynamic bodywork was deemed necessary, a requirement which resulted in the ultimate Giuliettas: Bertone’s Sprint Special and the Sprint Zagato, both built on the short-wheelbase Spider platform and powered by the 116bhp version of Alfa’s classic, 1,290cc, twin-cam four. Conceived as an out-and-out competition car, the Sprint Zagato coupé employed lightweight aluminium-alloy coachwork and demonstrated its designer’s commitment to weight saving in every detail, tipping the scales at an astonishing 785kg. With a top speed in excess of 200km/h the SZ was easily the fastest of the Giuliettas, and even today there are few 1.3-litre cars capable of matching this level of performance. The SZ’s inherent stability and instantaneous response to steering input made it a driver’s car par excellence. On the racetrack it proved virtually unbeatable, and the Sprint Zagato remains a major force to be reckoned with in historic motor sport, being eligible for a wide variety of prestigious events.
Two series of Sprint Zagato were produced between 1959 and 1962, the second series (SZ2) cars being distinguishable by a redesigned, larger and more aerodynamically efficient body incorporating a ‘sawn off’ Kamm-type tail, a feature which gave rise to the model’s Coda Tronca sobriquet. Under the skin the new SZ remained much as before apart from the welcome incorporation of Girling front disc brakes. SZ chassis numbers ran from ‘001’ to ‘217’, a total of 217 cars, an estimated 44 of which were the later SZ2 Coda Tronca version.
As confirmed by Alfa Romeo, chassis 1493*09589 on offer today was completed on the 10th June 1959. As evidenced by the photos that come with the car, it was found in barnfind condition. The owner therefore decided to restore it in the SZ configuration “coda tronca” with aluminium body, to emulate his dream car.This car conserved the original engine AR1315*08416 found in the Giulietta Sprint and it was totally restored and prepared with 2 40’ Weber carburettors 40’. This Giulietta SZ “Continuation” is equipped with Jaeger clocks. This remains one of the closest continuations of the famous 44 SZ Coda Tronca produced at the time. Realized on the base of a true Giulietta Sprint of the 1959, this car would hold its own in any collection.