One of the all time European classic cars is the Alfa Romeo. This Italian made car has a long and rich history. Darracq Italiana is where the story begins. This company, founded in 1907 by an Italian businessman from Milan, Cavaliere Ugo Stella, teamed up with the French car company belonging to Alexandre Darracq. The first few cars were produced in Naples but soon after the partnership collapsed and Ugo Stella moved the company to a small neighborhood in Milan; and the new company was now called ALFA. The acronym ALFA stands for anonima Lombarda Fabbrica Automobili (meaning Lombard Automobile Factory).
The first non Darracq cars were produced in 1920s and had an impressive 24 HP. The designer, Giuseppe Merosi, would later go on and design new ALFA cars with more powerful engines and a stylish exterior. It is from these humble beginnings that we have today's Alfa Romeo. In 1911, ALFA ventured into the business of car racing and the rest is history.
Over the years, Alfa Romeo established itself as a racing car, winning numerous driving competitions all over Europe. Besides winning the Le Mans many times, the car has also recorded victories at the formulae one World championship.
In the 60s, Alfa Romeo became part of European culture. It was a popular car to have such as the 2600 sprint GT.
Throughout this time period, engineers at ALFA started to modify and redesign the engines. The GTA was a powerful two engine car to come out during this re-engineering process and won several prestigious car races in Europe.
From the 1930s up to the 70s, Alfa Romeo went through myriad difficulties. Two successive World Wars and the financial gloom of the 70s led to dire financial difficulties.
In the 90s, Alfa Romeo started to produce cars in other parts of Italy. Among the new cars of the 90s were the new spider and GTV. Both cars are no longer produced and are considered vintage.
In 1995, Alfa Romeo discontinued exporting its cars to the USA chiefly due to competition from American cars. In 2007, this decision was reversed and Alfa started exporting cars back to America. Last years, the 8C Competizone made its debut in the USA. Alfa is now thinking of adding the Brera and Spider to the American market. Today, Alfa Romeos are only sold via Maserati dealers in the USA. There are presently discussions with the Italian giants and Chrysler to utilize the closed factories to make some models of Alfa Romeo in the USA.
At the moment, the global downturn in the economy has put a hold on the full return of the new generation of Alfa cars to the USA.
With a solid history of success and innovation, ALFA Romeo is bound to go back to the top. With superb style, speed, power and the color red, what else can one want from AR?