ALFA ROMEO HISTORY
Do you remember the movie “The Graduate”? Many of us most likely were either too young or not even born yet when that classic film came out in 1967. Dustin Hoffman was the lead actor and the movie made him a star. It also made the Italian sports car the Alfa Romeo a star. That was the very cool convertible the then young Mr. Hoffman drove around when he was dating his girlfriend’s mother. Right…you have to see the movie to really get it.
But you don’t have to see the movie to see why the Alfa Romeo is still one of the coolest imports in this country. You can come down to Alfa Romeo Fiat of Larchmont and do that. They have Alfa Romeos, Fiats and Abarths for you to sit in, touch, get comfortable in and test drive. Well, enough about that, let’s get back to the Alfa Romeo.
The Alfa Romeo started out as A.L.F.A., which was short for Anonima Lombarda Fabbrica Automobili, "Anonymous Lombard Automobile Factory” in 1910. That’s all we know about the mysterious name but we do know that they were involved in car racing since 1911 and did pretty well for themselves. They added the name Romeo to the aforementioned Alfa when the Italian entrepreneur from Naples, Nicola Romeo came aboard. That was 1920.
The company had its financial ups and downs in the 1920s and 1930s and came under government control for a while. After 1945, Alfa Romeo got back on its feet and started manufacturing small cars instead of the more expensive hand-built luxury automobiles it had been making, which brought back profitability to the company. In the 1950s the company produced the Alfa Romeo Twin cam engine that was extremely innovative and quite popular. That engine was manufactured for forty years. Alfa Romeo started building sports cars in the 1960s and 70s, and then the company was sold to Fiat, but kept its name and identity.
The Alfa Romeo has always been a successful racing car, competing in Formula One and Grand Prix motor racing, and that’s where it got its great reputation as a true sports car. Of course, after seeing “The Graduate,” you’ll see why it has a totally “cool” reputation as well. You can see this great little car at Alfa Romeo Fiat of Larchmont.
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