It’s back to Denmark’s COTY exhibition. We’ve had a look at this car before yet it’s always pleasant to meet again: the Alfa Romeo Giulietta
The Danish COTY committee described it as an “uncompromised sports car for saloon drivers”. It won by garnering 76 of 250 possible points in 1978. The Simca Horizon and VW Golf diesel took second and third places respectively.
The Danes tend towards tightfistedness (or parsimony) and some jurors resented the AR’s high price, the highest of the ten contenders. In a way it was somewhat surprising that the Alfa managed to do so well, given that its overstructure rested on rather old elements, those of the 1973 Alfetta.
This is a better image of the first series interior :
Note: the car at the exhibition is not a 1977 car but a later model. I don’t think finding a 1977 car in Denmark would be all that easy.
A look at the Giuletta’s statistics produces a little shock. Though in no way a big car, the Alfa weighed a little over 1500 kg, propelled by a 1.6 litre four-cylinder engine. Its 105 hp pushed the car to 60 in a shade under 12 seconds. What mattered more was the general road manners and balance. The contrast with the stodge from Opel and Ford must have been stark.
In typical Alfa style, the interior accomodation can only be called extremely inviting. It’s only in recent years that I’ve come to recognise that Alfa were for a long time a cut above in the seating department. I remember sitting in an Giulia at least three decades ago and noting how darn good the seats were. I’d not realised until a year or two ago that this was not a one-off but something Alfa apparently consistently aimed at. You hear a lot about the engines and nothing about the seats.
This brings to at least four the number of these cars I have been in or seen which have left a deep impression on the basis of their soft furnishings. This is probably the biggest insight emerging from my gradually accumulating experience of these cars. Yes the engines, yes the handling but goodness the seats are superb.
The Giulietta turned out to be one of two flashes in the Danish COTY frying pan: the Danes waited until 1998 to dish out another gong, which was planted on the lapel of the 156:
While hunting around for examples of the Giulietta for sale I found this:
It costs 4200 euros but that includes the dust. The advert does not say where the car is or why so many are gathered in a shed under plastic. Who does not want to find out more about this? And also, the entry price for these cars is getting quite high, is it not?
There might be a few more items from the Danish COTY exhibition, but not so many as I would have liked. As exhibitions go, it is one of the least satisfying I have seen so far.