Ahead of this weekend’s Italian Grand Prix, Alfa Romeo unveiled a new supercar called the 33 Stradale. It’s a successor to a vehicle that solidified the marque’s name in the history books, a mid-engined sports car from the ‘60s that’s been called one of the most beautiful cars ever built by just about every automotive writer on the planet; its legend is so great that Alfa Romeo didn’t bother changing the name for this new model.
Why is it important that the new 33 Stradale made its debut before Sunday’s F1 race at Monza? Because, according to the automaker, last year’s Italian Grand Prix is where “first meetings with some customers took place” and “where the opportunity to express desires began.” If you’re wondering how you too can express your desire to own this new iteration of the 33 Stradale, you’re out of luck. As Alfa Romeo notes, “Within a few weeks [of the 2022 Monza Grand Prix], all 33 units were sold.”
Those lucky enough to score a build slot were not simply buying into the continuation of an automotive icon, they were signing up for a long process of customization with Alfa Romeo. The new 33 Stradale is making headlines for being available as a gas-powered car (with the V6 twin-turbo engine taken from Maserati’s MC20, as is the chassis, per Road & Track) or an electric one, an increasingly common option among high-end automobiles. But the more interesting aspect of this supercar is that the company said it created a new department for its development called Alfa Romeo Bottega, “a team of professionals who have worked closely with customers to design 33 unique and exclusive vehicles” from the beginning of the project.
In other words, the model you see in the press photos is not representative of the entire series. Each one will have its own quirks, as chosen by the buyer.
But even though the 33 Stradale of 2023 was almost impossible to buy, it’s not as hard to get your hands on as the car it’s inspired by.
Despite the original Alfa Romeo 33 Stradale being hailed as one of the sexiest cars ever made, only 18 models were built between 1967 and 1969. The stradale name — Italian for “road,” and a designation used by a number of Italian automakers — is a reference to this sports car being a road-going version of Alfa Romeo’s Tipo 33 race car. One of these 18 cars is kept safe in the marque’s museum in Arese, Italy. The others won’t be coming up for auction anytime soon. Even if they did, the ‘60s model is far more valuable than its contemporary: Automotive News Europe puts the price of the new 33 Stradale at over $1.6 million, while an original 33 Stradale has been estimated to cost in the ballpark of $10 million.
The lessons to be learned here? Heritage sells in the automotive world. Oh, and the Italian Grand Prix is a great place to hobnob. You never know what limited-edition supercars are being whispered about.
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