Cheap Wheels: 1983-1990 Alfa Romeo Spider | The Daily Drive | Consumer Guide® The Daily Drive


1983-1990 Alfa Romeo Spider

Alfa Romeo Spider

Notice: The next story was excerpted from the August 2021 challenge of Collectible Vehicle journal.

Cheap Wheels

The Alfa Romeo Spider had an extended historical past within the U.S. It first went on sale as a 1967 model known as Duetto. It was pretty typical for a two-seat convertible sports activities automobile in its day with low bodywork, a four-cylinder engine, Weber carburetors, handbook transmission, folding prime, and a reside rear axle. For this Low-cost Wheels, we decide it up additional downstream, in 1983, when Alfa facelifted the already long-running Pininfarina-designed automobile. By then it was known as Spider Veloce, and these Alfas are generally known as Sequence 3 Spiders. 

Extra from Collectible Vehicle journal

1983-1990 Alfa Romeo Spider

Up entrance there was a brand new black-plastic bumper meeting that additionally included a extra distinguished grille. On the again, a dark-plastic “ducktail” spoiler was added. We predict the spoiler appears just like the unit on a 1979-1981 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am; whether or not it improved look stays debatable. However we predict the magnesium Campagnolo “Daytona” wheels have been, and are, good-looking.

The engine remained the two.0-liter dohc unit that arrived again in 1972. Over time it was upgraded, and tweaks included variable valve timing in 1980 and Bosch L-Jetronic gas injection in 1982. By ’82 the 4 was good for 115 horsepower and 119 pound-feet of torque. 

In 1985, Alfa-Romeo added a less expensive Spider variant with much less gear, the Graduate. The title after all referenced the 1967 movement image The Graduate that starred Dustin Hoffman and his character’s ’67 Duetto.

Extra modifications arrived for 1986. A top-of-the-line Quadrifoglio model was new, priced from $19,600. It included “aerodynamic” lower-body skirts, leather-based inside, a detachable fiberglass hardtop, and air-con. It ran 15-inch alloy wheels sporting Pirelli P6 tires, whereas different Spiders nonetheless rolled with 14s. 

Quadrifoglio acquired a revised inside shared with the now-midgrade Veloce ($16,995). The seats and console have been new, together with a reworked instrument cluster. A smaller-diameter leather-trimmed steering wheel changed the outdated hand-finished wooden unit, and the pedals have been repositioned in an obvious effort to extend leg room. Shopper Information® suggested all inside upgrades have been prolonged to the $13,995 Graduate; Street & Observe disagreed, reporting the Graduate carried on with the outdated seats.

R&T was pleasantly shocked with its Quadrifoglio take a look at automobile’s total match and end, and impressed with the inside revisions, however didn’t just like the add-on aero skirts. CG thought physique flex was extreme and the inside was riddled with squeaks. The 4 wasn’t as highly effective or refined as then-modern contemporaries, and the brakes have been disappointing.

For 1990, Shopper Information® reported that—shades of the long run—roughly 300 Chrysler-Plymouth sellers would start promoting the U.S.-spec Alfa Romeo Spider. It was little modified, however new digital engine-control gear helped add three horsepower, bringing the entire to 120. Costs ranged from $16,950 for the Graduate to $23,950 for the Quadrifoglio. The editors advisable readers within the Spider get a Mazda Miata as a substitute. 

That lengthy historical past we talked about at first had one other chapter. Subsequent up was a Sequence 4 automobile that will take the Spider to its finish in 1993.

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• Dealing with was good, particularly with the 15-inch tires.

• From what we hear, the convertible prime was very simple to function.


• Nearly each interval evaluate mentions an uncomfortable driving place with too-close pedals however a steering wheel that requires too lengthy of a attain. 

• Low-cost-wheelers in search of an computerized transmission received’t discover one in these Alfa Romeos.

Closing Drive:

Whereas many could argue the first-generation Mazda Miata is a greater automobile by virtually any measure, the Alfa Romeo Spider’s quirky Italian mystique and designed-in-the-Sixties charms make for unexpectedly unique low-cost wheels.

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1983-1990 Alfa Romeo Spider

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1983-1990 Alfa Romeo Spider

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1983-1990 Alfa Romeo Spider


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