Christmas Cheer – 1986 Alfa Romeo Sprint

I haven’t had a fun car in my garage for 3 months so when this Alfa Romeo Sprint popped up for sale in my area, I was interested. When the price nearly halved earlier this week, I felt it would be downright rude if I didn’t check it out.

Sprint1I pick it up this afternoon 🙂

It’s a 1986 Alfa Romeo Sprint. I used to own a Sprint back in the late 1990’s. Regular visitors to this site may remember that I took care of my mate Gavin’s Sprint earlier this year and I fell in love with these little cars all over again. This one’s a later model than Gavin’s so there are a number of differences, but it’ll be just as fun to drive.

It has a twin-carb 1.5 litre boxer engine that puts out around 105hp. It’s been off the road for the last 6 years and it needs a new water pump but it started fine when I checked it out last night. It also needs a full service, of course.

Downsides: the Sprint has one rust spot about an inch-square at the base of the windscreen that should be relatively easy to touch up. There are two more very minor rust areas, too, and I’ll take a look at all of them over the holiday break. The fabric is worn on the driver’s seat and the steering wheel leather has basically disintegrated.

Upsides: everything else. The car is essentially a wonderful little runner in very tidy condition for a 30 year old Alfa and should take next-to-no-time to get back on the road. And given that it’ll cost me just 50% of the going price for a decent Sprint by the time it’s on the road, I’m a pretty happy camper 🙂

Those of you keeping score will note that right now, we have a Lancia, a Fiat and an Alfa at home. The sad part is that none of them are in correct working order, but that’ll change soon. Now I just have to work on getting a Maserati, a Ferrari and a Lamborghini and I’ll have all the main Italians covered 🙂

I’ll post some more photos after I get the car home, but here are some photos from the ad.

Sprint1

Sprint2

Sprint3

Sprint4

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15 Comments

    1. I’m learning to hate rust with a passion, Nige! But this one’s very clean compared to what a 1980’s Alfa can be. I’ll tidy this one up myself, which means a very dodgy job but it’ll be OK for a cheap runabout.

      Congrats on the NA8! We’re going to have to go for a run in the new year, I think.

  1. Nice car! Is it true that the later Sprints are on a 33 platform rather than the earlier ones’ Alfasud underpinnings, even though the bodies are ostensibly the same?

    1. From what I understand, the sud/sprint/33 chassis are all basically the same. There were changes along the way, of course, with inboard brakes going outboard, different crossmembers for the 16v engines, etc. But the 33 is considered as being the evolution of the original Sud.

    2. I’ve been looking into this a bit more today and it appears there’s more to it than I thought (although it’s probably less than it sounds like).

      From what I can tell…..

      Yes, the second series Alfa Sprint is indeed based on the 33 chassis whereas the first series is based on the Sud chassis. So that’s a difference. The size of the difference is possibly just a bit more than negligible, though, because the 33 chassis was little more than a basic evolution of the Sud chassis.

      I guess you could call the Sprint a bridge between the two of them.

  2. Ok, so when are you start gathering up Ducati, Lambretta, Caviga, Vespa, Moto Guzzi, MV Agusta and especially Benelli? There’s also Bimota, more of a customizer early in the company’s life. My fav bike is the Ducati Mike Hailwood Special.

    Does the Brumby get sold?

    1. I think the Brumby will be sold off in a few months from now. I’ll keep it for the summer and then do a big pruning of the garden and after that, it’ll be off. If things go to plan, we won’t be in this house for another summer.

  3. Very nice. Even big kids need a toy at Christmas to play with. 😉 Have fun and Merry Christmas, Swade!

  4. Congrats on another interesting purchase, I’m sure it will bring you loads of fun. Happy Holidays!!!

  5. A nice Christmas present to yourself. Does it come gift wrapped? 😉

    I look forward to reading about your automotive ventures in 2015 along with your informative and thought provoking comment on other topics of interest.

    A merry Christmas and a happy, healthy New Year to you and yours.

    Kind regards,
    Ron.

  6. “that right now, we have a Lancia, a Fiat and an Alfa at home. The sad part is that none of them are in correct working order”

    So, isn’t this just the norm ….
    KJ