Back to Normal – 1979 Alfa Romeo Alfetta GT and 1977 Alfa Romeo Alfetta GT Mario Andretti

After a solid run of some interesting wagons, it’s time to focus back on our primary mission – find unusual, sporty cars for short money! And as usual, the classic car gods provide, in this case a pair of Alfa Romeo Alfetta GTs. If you’re a regular reader, you know about the great shape that shares cues with various exotics and other sports coupes of the period, the sweet four-cylinder that keeps telling you to wind it out, and the nicely balanced transaxle chassis. First up is this 1979 Alfa Romeo Alfetta GT for sale for $1500 in Berkeley, CA.

1979 Alfa Romeo Alfetta GT 3 right front

Strangely, this car was listed for $3333 on a popular online auction site for a day, but now shows up as sold, while the above listing has not been removed. So the status of this car is not clear, but if it has sold, you can figure the final price ended up somewhere between $1500 and $3333, which suggests the seller probably came out of the deal ahead of the game, certainly far more than if he’d bothered restoring it.

1979 Alfa Romeo Alfetta GT 3 left rear

The car still has its original blue and yellow plates, and is said to have been owned by a UC Berkeley professor nearly all its life (why do we emphasize the profession of some owners? Nobody cares if it was owned by, say, a nurse). You’ll notice the seller has listed the car as a 1976, which says something about which details are important to him – based on door panels and faux-wood dash, later surface-mounted reflectors, and other details this is a 1979. The body is said to be in good condition, barring some rust-through on the hatch and behind the passenger-side front wheel. Under-body shots show evidence of a repaint at some point in the car’s past.

1979 Alfa Romeo Alfetta GT 3 interior

It’s not clear if door panels are included, and the dash shows typical cracking and is missing its center console. Of course, that cracking comes courtesy of the same weather that kept the floor pans rust free. Predictably, the leather seating is splitting but not a complete disaster for rolling project use, and if you’re vegan you can save some money and use vinyl or cloth and only get a minor infraction ticket from the originality police.

1979 Alfa Romeo Alfetta GT 3 engine

The engine compartment needs a good cleaning, and the front of the air filter canister is missing – you’ll need that to pass emissions testing. This is an original Aria Condizionata car, and honestly, if you’re up to the effort, this is a good thing to keep since the sloped windows do a great job of heating up the interior on a sunny day. Depending on which listing you read, the seller is getting the title or will credit you the fees. The car is said to run well but have a clogged catalytic converter – the easisest way to verify this might be to pop it off and shake out the insides, or find a test pipe. If something about these two listings gives cause for concern, check out this 1977 Alfa Romeo Alfetta GT Mario Andretti for sale in Katy, TX with bidding currently at $1325 and a day and a half left to go.

1977 Alfa Romeo Alfetta GT Andretti left rear

The Andretti edition featured a bunch of sweet 1970s upgrades for a whopping $900, or about $3500 in today’s money. That included some wicked tricolore striping, Mario Andretti autographs – they might be stickers, though – a limited edition badge on the dash, a lip spoiler on the trunk lid, and some more meaty stuff like Koni shocks, Ansa tail pipe and turbina alloys. The car seems to have suffered a recent minor rear impact which has damaged the tail lights and slightly bent the rear fascia.

1977 Alfa Romeo Alfetta GT Andretti window sticker

The car is said to have covered about 165,000 miles since it was picked up new at Rusnak VW in Culver City, and seems to have oxidized silver paint and some damage near the driver’s side headlight, but looks to be pretty solid otherwise. Unfortunately, there are no pictures of the interior or engine, but it’s been in storage since 1988 (which means it covered about 15,000 miles/year in its short service life!) so you’ll need to do the usual resurrection regimen. Tires are said to be new, while the black vinyl interior is in good shape, barring some wear and tear on the driver’s seat. Both cars look like good rolling projects – which would you choose?


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