Alfa-Romeo Spider

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The Alfa Romeo Spider is a roadster produced by the Italian manufacturer Alfa Romeo from 1966 to 1993. Widely regarded as a design classic, it remained in production for almost three decades with only minor aesthetic and mechanical changes. Based on the Giulia 105 series chassis, the Spider was launched in the 36th Geneva Motor Show in 1966. The name "Duetto" was chosen in a write-in competition in Italy. The Italian firm of Pininfarina was responsible for the design of the body, the Duetto was the last project with which founder Battista "Pinin" Farina was personally associated. Pininfarina were also responsible for the manufacture of the vehicle's monocoque construction. The engine was a 1570 cc variant of the Alfa Romeo twin cam four cylinder engine, and produced 109 hp (81 kW). Sparsely fitted inside but including five speed manual transmission, disc brakes and independent front suspension. The original "Duetto" was in production from 1966-1967; replaced in late 1967 by the 1750 Spider Veloce, powered by a 118 hp (88 kW) 1779 cc engine. Modifications were also made to the suspension, brakes, electrics and wheels and tyres though the car looked effectively the same. Visible differences were limited to the rear-view mirror repositioned to the door, and different badging on the tail. During the production run, the front repeater lights were moved ahead of the wheelarches. The car's official title was 1750 Spider Veloce, the name "Duetto" being dropped from this point on.

In 1971 saw the Spider Veloce get a new, larger powerplant - a 1962 cc, 132 hp (98 kW) unit - and consequently the name was changed from 1750 Spider Veloce to 2000 Spider Veloce. The 1600 Spider restarted production a year later as the Spider 1600 Junior, and was visually identical to the 1300. The final major change to the Spider came in 1990. The primary mechanical change was that the Spider was given Bosch Motronic electronic fuel injection with an electric fan. Externally, the Spider lost its front under-bumper spoiler and the rear trunk-lid spoiler and picked up 164-style rear lights stretching across the width of the car as well as plastic bumpers the same color as the car. This also marked the first generation of this car with automatic transmission. In North America, the styling changes didn't appear until the 1991 model year; 1990 models featured the Motronic fuel injection but retained the black bumpers. Power steering, larger knee bolsters and a driver-side airbag also appeared as standard for North American market Spiders, which were available in two configurations: Spider and Spider Veloce. Primary differences were in standard equipment; the Veloce substituted leather seats for the base model's vinyl, 15" alloy wheels were one size up from the standard steel wheels with hubcaps, air conditioning and a cloth top were standard. It featured a Porsche style solid rear window and lift out roof panels, all made out of black GRP type material. Less than 2,000 models of such type were ever made and was the only part solid roof Spider until the introduction of the factory crafted hard top.

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