10 settembre 2015
UP CLOSE AND PERSONAL WITH A MOST DRAMATIC ALFA ROMEO
This is probably the most dramatic design Alfa Romeo has ever had; only Zagato could imagine such lines. Project ES-30 (Experimental Sportscar 3.0-liter) was based on the very fast and mean 75 IMSA. Developed (mainly its suspension) by the recently deceased Giorgio Pianta, the man behind Abarth Racing and Alfa Corse, the SZ, Delta S4, 155 DTM, and others were built under his wing.
He was the one yelling in the box when Alessandro Nannini was about to kill Roland Asch for his deliberate contact at Singen 1994—go find my interview to the Italian driver.
It is quite stunning to think this project comes straight from the ’70s; in fact, under the advanced Zagato bodywork there is an Alfetta base, evolved into 75 Milano, and lifted to reach the divine ES-30 in 1989.
With its soft exhaust note and only engine and air intake whisper, I can listen every single valve lift as an orchestra, growing up and becoming a howl. The gearbox’s stroke is a bit too long, like an old school car, but precise and useful once you understand how to change without losing many revs. Its weight distribution is perfect.
Incredibly, the SZ is better to drive than even one of its contemporaries, like a Ferrari 348 TB, and here comes a thing you didn’t know…
Only 1,036 SZs were built, and all in red, except for one: the young Andrea Zagato had his in black, with a red interior. One day, I’ll find it and make our jaws drop!
#AlfaRomeo , #Busso , #SZ , #RZ , #Pianta , #Langella , #Zagato