The cars we loved.
Way before the 3 series BMW was known as the “Ultimate driving machine”, there was the Alfa GTV series of cars to take the crown of serious affordable European Sport/GT luxury. The GTV6 came from a long line of small rear wheel drive 4 cylinder Alfetta coupes sold in the US during the 70’s.
The GTV6 represented the cutting edge of Italian sport’s car technology (outside of anything coming from Ferrari of course). The 2.5l SOHC V6 made 160hp. That was an impressive number for a v6 at the time. Many American V8’s of 80s vintage had this much power, but at double the displacement. This was my teen dream car untill the Pontaic Fireo GT fastback caught my eye (just before it was canceled). Like the Fireo the GTV6 was flawed. It’s mechanical were often prone to reliability problems, but that did not stop die-hards (then) and mechanics (today) from owning them. The car was known for well balanced handling, something expected in an Italian car that was almost 30K in the 80’s! There were many variations and special editions sold in the US during the short time the car was available here. Most notable of them was the Callaway version with it’s aggressive aero components and twin turbo 230hp engine.
The Japanese and American competition was heating up, and the GTV6’s small sales, high price and scattered dealer network help doom the car here. Eventually, the Alfa brand in the United States was gone by the early 90’s.