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Alfa Romeo 2600

64alfa01.jpg
Alfa Romeo 2600 Spider
Manufacturer Alfa Romeo
Parent company
Aka
Production 1961–1968
Assembly
Predecessor Alfa Romeo 2000
Successor
Class Luxury car
Body style 4-door Berlina (sedan)
2-door Spider (convertible)
2-door Sprint (coupe)
Layout FR layout
Platform
Engine 2.6 L straight-6
Transmission 5-speed manual
Wheelbase Berlina/Sprint/Spider
2720/2580/2500 mm
(107/101/98 in.)
Length 4700/4580/4500 mm
(185/180/177 in.)
Width 1700/1706/1690 mm
(66.9/67.2/66.5 in.)
Height
Ground clearance
Front track
Rear track
Weight 1220-1380 kg
(2689-3042 lb)
Top speed
Fuel capacity
Related Alfa Romeo 2000
Similar
Designer Sprint Bertone's Giorgetto Giugiaro
SZ Zagato's Ercole Spada
Spider Touring


The Alfa Romeo 2600 (series 106) was Alfa Romeo´s six-cylinder flagship produced from 1961 to 1968. It was the successor to the Alfa Romeo 2000. It has become historically significant as the last Alfa Romeo to have been fitted with an inline six-cylinder engine having twin overhead camshafts. That had been the traditional Alfa Romeo engine configuration since the 1920's, but gave way to four-cylinder engines as the factory oriented its production towards more economical mass-produced car models after the Second World War.

The 2600 was introduced in the 1962 Geneva Motor Show, as a sedan with a factory-built body (2600 Berlina), a two-plus-two seater convertible with body by Carrozzeria Touring (2600 Spider), and a coupe with a body by Bertone (2600 Sprint). A convertible based on the Sprint coupe was shown by Bertone in 1963. It was also named 2600 Sprint, but did not enter production. The 2600 SZ (Sprint Zagato) with fastback coupe bodywork by Zagato, and the limited-edition 2600 De Luxe with six-window sedan bodywork by OSI (Officine Stampaggi Industriale) were introduced three years later in 1965 at the Frankfurt Motor Show.


Overview

2600 Sprint

The Berlina, Spider and Sprint were based on the corresponding models in the 2000 range, and all three inherited the body styling of their predecessors with minor facelifting. The biggest change was the engine. A brand new all-alloy 2.6 liter engine with six cylinders in line and twin overhead camshafts replaced the earlier four-cylinder engine with its cast-iron block which dated back to the 1900 range of 1950. Two carburettors were fitted to the Berlina engines, while the Sprint, Spider and Sprint Zagato engines had three twin-choke horizontal carburetors and developed 145bhp. The OSI De Luxe was available with either the two-carb or the three-carb setup.

Total production for the Sprint was 6999 cars, and for the Spider 2255 cars.

From a sales point of view, the 2600 models were not a success, despite deserved acclaim for that excellent engine. The poor sales were not only due to the elevated prices of the 2600 models. The cars did not compare well to contemporary products, including those of Alfa Romeo themselves. The factory had decided - correctly, as it turned out - to concentrate their limited development resources on the mid-sized Giulia which was introduced at about the same time. The flagship 2600 range was only a minor facelift of the 2000 range with a new engine, as this was all that the factory could do with the resources available. Since the 2000 itself had basically been a 1958 restyling of the 1950 1900, this left the 2600 with running gear a dozen years old at introduction.

2600 Berlina

The new engine also added weight and length at the front; though this did much for stability, it did not help the handling. Because the 2600 was a flagship Alfa Romeo model, expectations were high, and both critics and customers quickly spotted the deficiencies, both on paper and on the road. For example, the 165-400 radial tires fitted to the 2600 were a mere 10 mm wider in section than the 155-15 tires fitted to the Giulietta, though the 2600 had considerably more power and weight. When the new Giulia appeared with completely new running gear, the 2600 was shown up even more.

Another reason for slow sales was styling and concept. The Berlina's styling was not happy and that was reflected in especially poor sales for that model; while most Alfa Romeo berlinas in the marque's history outsold the more specialized sporting models in the same range, the 2600 Berlina did not outsell the 2600 Sprint and Spider. The 2600 Spider had styling which was seen to be derivative of that of its smaller stablemate, the Giulietta Spider: certainly handsome, but lacking the smaller car's grace and balance. The larger car's handling also suffered perhaps unfair comparison to that of the Giulietta Spider, and this is an important factor in a car with a sporting orientation. One sales point in its favor was that it was a four-seater convertible, though the two rear seats were fairly cramped.

The 2600 Sprint made more of an impression. It was a large grand touring coupe which could seat four adults in comfort over long journeys at high speeds. As such, it did not suffer unfair comparisons to other models in the Alfa Romeo range, none of which could directly compare to it. In that mode of operation, oriented more towards fast touring than sporting driving, the agility and handling balance of the smaller Alfas mattered less, while the stability and smoother ride of the larger car, and the wide power and torque band of the six-cylinder engine, came into their own. Added to the greater space and comfort, those virtues made a convincing case for the 2600 Sprint. The car also inherited the sharp, modern styling of its predecessor, the 2000 Sprint, and that certainly contributed to its being the top seller in the 2600 range. That shape had been the result of Giorgetto Giugiaro's first major project as head designer for Carrozeria Bertone, and is arguably one of the most influential designs in the history of automotive styling.

Alfa 2600 Sprint Zagato

The 2600 range was replaced at the top of the Alfa range by the 1750 models in 1968. The 1750's were refined versions of the 1600 cc Giulia range which continued in production, so once more the Alfa Romeo flagship was a derivative product created by upgrading the motor of an existing range and carrying out a minor restyling. All similarity with the 2600 ends there though; the 1750's, and the 2000's which evolved from them, were a great success for Alfa Romeo from every point of view, especially sales.

1965 Alfa Romeo 2600 De Luxe bodied by OSI

Today, as classics, the 2600 Sprint and Spider are appreciated for the tasteful and opulent styling of both the bodywork and the interior, for the performance, technology and sound of the six-cylinder twin-cam engine, and — perhaps ironically — for their rarity compared to the more successful Alfa Romeo models of the same era. The fact that the cars are rare, and their parts are either dedicated to the 2600 range, or derive from even earlier Alfas, means that owners need to dedicate a lot of effort and resources to restoration and maintenance. Very few 2600 Berlinas have found dedicated owners in the decades since the model was discontinued, therefore very few have survived. 2600 SZ's are very rare (only 105 cars have been produced) and they are the most valuable model in the range. The 2600 OSI De Luxe has always been extremely rare but there are no signs of it having become particularly desirable as a collector's item.


Engines

Alfa Romeo 2600 engine
Model Displacement Fuel system Compression ratio Power Top speed
Berlina 2584 cc Double Solex 8,5:1 130 bhp 175km/h
Sprint,Spider,OSI Berlina De Luxe 2584 cc Triple Solex 9,0:1 145 bhp 200km/h
Sprint Zagato 2584 cc Triple Solex 9,0:1 165 bhp 215km/h


Gallery

Alfa Romeo 2600 Coupe


1965 Alfa Romeo 2600 SZ Rallye Car AutoDelta

  • Prepared by the officine "Patriarca" in Roma with 3 Weber Engine 220 CV.

Source


External links


Alfa Romeo S.P.A.
1910-1920 24hp | 40-60hp | Castagna | Torpedo | RL | RM | P1 | P2 | 6c 1500 | 6c 1750darkorange
1920-1940 1750 Drophead | 8c 2300 | 6c | 6c 1900 | 6c 2300 | 8c 2900 | 12 cylinder | P3 | 1935 Twin-engine
1940-1950 158 | 6c 2500
1950-1960 1900 | AR 51 The Matta | Disco Volante | Giulietta | 1.3 | 2000
1960-1970 Giulia | Super 1600 | TI | Sprint Speciale | Alfa Romeo TZ | Alfa Romeo GTA | Alfa Romeo 2600 | Alfa Romeo Tipo 33/3 | Alfa Romeo 33 Stradale | Spider Veloce | 1750
1970-1980 Montreal (1970–1977) | Alfasud (1972–1983) | Alfetta (1972–1977) | Arna | Berlina | GTV | Guilia Nuova Super 1300
1980-1990 GTV | GTV6 | Sprint | 33 (1983–1994) | Alfa 6 (1979-1984)| 90 (1984–1986) | Alfa Romeo Milano (Euro 75) (1985–1992) | 164 (1987–1998)
1990-2000 SZ | GTV (1995–present) | Spider (1998–present) | 145 (1995–2001) | 146 (1995–2001) | 155 (1992–1998) | 156 - GTA (1997–present) | 166 (1998–present)
2000 onwards GT (2004–present) | 147 - GTA (2001–present) | 159 | 167 (2007?) | Brera (Preview-2005) | Spyder (2007?) | Kamal (Expected-2007)
Concept Cars 33.2 · Carabo · Diva · Navajo · BAT series · Disco Volante · 2000 Sportiva · Kamal · Nuvola · Scighera · Visconti · Full List
Fiat Group brands Abarth | Alfa Romeo | Autobianchi | Ferrari | Fiat | Lancia | Innocenti | Maserati
Fiat Group Corporate Website | Fiat Auto Website
<- Previous Alfa Romeo Automobiles S.p.A., a subsidiary of the Fiat S.p.A. since 1986, car timeline, 1946-1979 Next ->
Type 1950s 1960s 1970s
0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
Small family car Dauphine* Alfasud
Compact executive car Giulietta (750/101)
Giulia Giulietta (116)
1750 Alfetta
Executive car 1900 2000 2600 2000 Alfa 6
Cabriolet 1900 2000 2600
Coupé Giulietta Sprint
Giulia Alfetta GT/GTV and GTV6
1900 2000 2600
Roadster Spider
Gran Sport Quattroruote
Sports car 6C 2500 Montreal
33 Stradale
Off-road Matta
Racing car TZ/GTA
158/159 Tipo 33 177
*Dauphine was produced under Renault license
<- Previous Alfa Romeo Automobiles S.p.A., a subsidiary of the Fiat S.p.A. since 1986, car timeline, 1946-1979 Next ->
Type 1950s 1960s 1970s
0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
Small family car Dauphine* Alfasud
Compact executive car Giulietta (750/101)
Giulia Giulietta (116)
1750 Alfetta
Executive car 1900 2000 2600 2000 Alfa 6
Cabriolet 1900 2000 2600
Coupé Giulietta Sprint
Giulia Alfetta GT/GTV and GTV6
1900 2000 2600
Roadster Spider
Gran Sport Quattroruote
Sports car 6C 2500 Montreal
33 Stradale
Off-road Matta
Racing car TZ/GTA
158/159 Tipo 33 177
*Dauphine was produced under Renault license
<center> Alfa Romeo S.P.A.
1910-1920 24hp | 40-60hp | Castagna | Torpedo | RL | RM | P1 | P2 | 6c 1500 | 6c 1750darkorange
1920-1940 1750 Drophead | 8c 2300 | 6c | 6c 1900 | 6c 2300 | 8c 2900 | 12 cylinder | P3 | 1935 Twin-engine
1940-1950 158 | 6c 2500
1950-1960 1900 | AR 51 The Matta | Disco Volante | Giulietta | 1.3 | 2000
1960-1970 Giulia | Super 1600 | TI | Sprint Speciale | Alfa Romeo TZ | Alfa Romeo GTA | Alfa Romeo 2600 | Alfa Romeo Tipo 33/3 | Alfa Romeo 33 Stradale | Spider Veloce | 1750
1970-1980 Montreal (1970–1977) | Alfasud (1972–1983) | Alfetta (1972–1977) | Arna | Berlina | GTV | Guilia Nuova Super 1300
1980-1990 GTV | GTV6 | Sprint | 33 (1983–1994) | Alfa 6 (1979-1984)| 90 (1984–1986) | Alfa Romeo Milano (Euro 75) (1985–1992) | 164 (1987–1998)
1990-2000 SZ | GTV (1995–present) | Spider (1998–present) | 145 (1995–2001) | 146 (1995–2001) | 155 (1992–1998) | 156 - GTA (1997–present) | 166 (1998–present)
2000 onwards GT (2004–present) | 147 - GTA (2001–present) | 159 | 167 (2007?) | Brera (Preview-2005) | Spyder (2007?) | Kamal (Expected-2007)
Concept Cars 33.2 · Carabo · Diva · Navajo · BAT series · Disco Volante · 2000 Sportiva · Kamal · Nuvola · Scighera · Visconti · Full List
Fiat Group brands Abarth | Alfa Romeo | Autobianchi | Ferrari | Fiat | Lancia | Innocenti | Maserati
Fiat Group Corporate Website | Fiat Auto Website


Bertone Designs
Abarth: 1952 Abarth 1500 Coupé | 1958 Abarth 1000 GT Coupé | 1965 Abarth OT 1000 Spider

Alfa Romeo: 1953 Alfa Romeo BAT-5 | 1954 Alfa Romeo 1900 Sport Spider | 1954 Alfa Romeo 2000 Sportiva | 1954 Alfa Romeo BAT-7 | 1954 Alfa Romeo Giulietta Sprint | 1955 Alfa Romeo BAT-9 | 1960 Alfa Romeo Giulietta Sprint Speciale | 1962 Alfa Romeo 2600 Sprint | 1962 Alfa Romeo Giulia Sprint | 1962 Alfa Romeo GTA | 1962 Alfa Romeo Giulia Sprint Speciale | 1964 Alfa Romeo Canguro | 1967 Alfa Romeo GT 1300 Junior | 1967 Alfa Romeo Montreal | 1968 Alfa Romeo Carabo | 1976 Alfa Romeo Navajo | 1978 Alfa Romeo Alfetta | 1980 Alfa Romeo Alfetta 2000 | 1983 Alfa Romeo Delfino | 2003 Alfa Romeo GT
ASA: 1962 ASA Coupé
Bertone: 1970 Bertone Berlinetta | 1992 Bertone Blitz | 2003 Bertone Birusa
Ferrari: 1962 Ferrari 250 GT Berlinetta Lusso | 1974 Ferrari 208/308 GT4 | 1976 Ferrari Rainbow
Fiat: 1967 Fiat Dino Coupé | 1968 Fiat 850Sport Spider | 1978 Fiat Ritmo/Strada | Fiat X1/9
ISO: 1962 Iso Rivolta | 1965 Iso Grifo | 1969 Iso Lele
Lamborghini: 1967 Lamborghini Marzal | 1967 Lamborghini Miura | 1968 Lamborghini Espada | 1970 Lamborghini Urraco | 1971 Lamborghini Countach | 1974 Lamborghini Bravo | 1980 Lamborghini Athon | 1988 Lamborghini Genesis | 1990 Lamborghini Diablo
Lambretta: 1968 Lambretta Luna line: Lui, Vega & Cometa | 1969 Lambretta GP/DL Scooter
Lancia: 1970 Lancia Stratos Zero | 1972 Lancia Stratos | 1978 Lancia Sibilo
Maserati: 1972 Maserati Khamsin | 1974 Maserati Quattroporte II