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Discussion Starter #61
Andrew, thanks for your post, it was most informative. Indeed this thread has generated an interesting exchange.
I can only assume that there are the usual 'facts' that go the rounds to ultimately become gospel over a period of time. Maybe the story of that last batch of 1978 SA 'manufactured' RHD Spiders fits into this category. It being repeated in 'Original Spider' makes me wonder about the research that is done for some supposedly authorative books.
What still bothers me is the fact that when I was a student I distinctly remember being devastated to read in the current motoring press (probably Autocar, as my Dad got it every week) that RHD spider production was being halted and that the last batch was being manufactured in SA... This myth has been around for a long time...
I would still like to track down where the story of this last batch of RHD spiders came from if any one can shed any light, but please don't let it detract from what has become a fascinating thread on the SA Alfa scene!
 

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South Africa said:
Dear Andrew,

'All SA sold cars were initially build there after 1972/73, with the exception of post 1975 Spiders and some Alfa Six Saloons (119i V6). These imported cars were all LHD. In this period, Alfa SA was run by an Italian engineer, Vito Bianco.'
The way I read this sentence is that "....exception of post 1975 Spiders.....these imported cars" ie the spiders and Alfa 6s were imported and not locally produced which fits in with the information I have.
Arguti
 

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Regarding the LDS, I am pretty sure I saw this single seater at Silverstone in July and took some photos .... it had a Montreal (etc) V8, correct?

I'm in Italy at the moment but I'll post the photos upon my return next week.

Alex.
 

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amarthur said:
Andrew, thanks for your post, it was most informative. Indeed this thread has generated an interesting exchange.
I can only assume that there are the usual 'facts' that go the rounds to ultimately become gospel over a period of time. Maybe the story of that last batch of 1978 SA 'manufactured' RHD Spiders fits into this category. It being repeated in 'Original Spider' makes me wonder about the research that is done for some supposedly authorative books.
What still bothers me is the fact that when I was a student I distinctly remember being devastated to read in the current motoring press (probably Autocar, as my Dad got it every week) that RHD spider production was being halted and that the last batch was being manufactured in SA... This myth has been around for a long time...
I would still like to track down where the story of this last batch of RHD spiders came from if any one can shed any light, but please don't let it detract from what has become a fascinating thread on the SA Alfa scene!
There is a chance that the truth about SA Alfas will never be known. With the political situation at the time, a lot of countries and companies kept any trade with the country very secret. I worked for an unamed computer company (Big Blue) and they devised all manner of sanction busting methods to continue trading. There is a chance that cars could have left SA in containers labeled as food or tractor parts. A lot of companies were forced to take this sort of action to remain in business.
 

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South African built Alfa Romeo's

Dear GreyGTV6,

Well you have raised a different issue which could be linked to what was being disclosed 'at the time' by Alfa Romeo and FIAT.

If your understanding and my understanding of 'Big Blue' are the same then this company admitted, during 'The Truth and Reconcilliation Process', to supplying computer equipment to the South African Government and its various organisations and paid a 'substantial' fine in order to be 'forgiven' by the post Apartheid South African Government.

Being involved in a 'certain' industry we had first hand information that the South African Authorities were publicising a certain product as being designed and built in South Africa however all the parts were being shipped into the country 'undercover of darkness' and assembled in South Africa with 'foreign' assistance.

Being involved with the Post Apartheid Government in South Africa it was extremely interesting to note that this 'regime' had 'ways and means' of obtaining what they wanted. How useful can embasies abroad be? How useful can diplomatic bags be? Possibly as we are made to believe, like the Nazi Regime in Germany in the 1930's and 1940's, both regimes 'failed' due to a lack of resources. Thus the the 'reign of terror' ended.

Should Amarthur agonise over the origin and history of his Alfa Spider or should he ask Centro Storico at Alfa Romeo in Italy? Could Amarthur believe the 'official version' of the origin and history of his Alfa Spider from Centro Storico in Italy?
 

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Ah yes. I forgot about that wonderful one-sided witch-hunt. Left the country around the same time it got started and could not be bothered to follow the antics from somewhere else. So perhaps you are right. Maybe the truth about the Alfas will be known and the Alfisti will know where their Alfas were built/assembled.
 

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Elvira retired 2 years ago, Archivio Storico is now run by Sig. Antonio Magro, assisted by Marco Fazio

Send your request to Marco at [email protected] & he will assist you.

Remember that they do this as a favour & don't expect any info on the engine, Alfa never recorded what engine went into which chassis.

They also have virtually no info on the South African built cars, those records were supposed to be kept by the Assembly Plants - all they can tell me about my '64 Sprint GT G.d. is that Chassis 00504*751969 was built in SA in '64.

Ciao
Greig
 

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Discussion Starter #69
South Africa and AlfistiSA, thanks for the help with the contact details for Archivo Storico. I have sent an email to them requesting information and will post details of their reply when it becomes available.
 

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arguti said:
The way I read this sentence is that "....exception of post 1975 Spiders.....these imported cars" ie the spiders and Alfa 6s were imported and not locally produced which fits in with the information I have.
Arguti
You all South African knowledgeable guys seem to agree that no Spider was produced in SA.

Yet, I came back across one of my sources on Alfa activity in SA: a comprehensive article written in 1990 by Patrick O'Brien, seeminlgy relying on very precise data, including precise numbers of cars exported to Australia or England. The number of Alfetta Turbos fits what's been liste above, for instance. I can quote the figure extensively in order to complete the info, but not right now, possibly in the next days.

What puzzles me is that O'Brien seemed very close to the SA management, as from what I read in this and other articles, and yet quotes 400 (seemingly an exact figure, because elsewhere he states when the figure is an estimate) Spiders built between 1975-1978. Are those "official" yet "compelled" data according to your import quotas informations?
 

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South African built Alfa Romeo's

Dear GTV2000,

Well, Patrick O'Brien is/was a well respected member of the Alfa Romeo 'community' in South Africa. He 'kept' the archives for the Alfa Romeo Club of South Africa for many years.

Maybe we can 'all' learn something once the request for information by Amarthur from Alfa Romeo Archivo Storico in Italy is received?
 

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I don't think it has been mentioned in any posts on this thread, but here in Australia we received a small number of 105 series 2000 GTV Autos in 1975 out of South Africa.

As far as I can tell (from looking at these cars over the years) the "normal" Italian 5 speed 2000 GTVs stopped coming in late 74 (probably still in dealers for part of 75) and the 2000 GTV Auto, designated 105.22A (and high rhd chassis numbers starting with 241...) with the 3 speed ZF out of the 2000A Berlina came here during 1975, just prior to the Alfetta GT being introduced.

A number of these Auto GTVs have been converted to manual, and I think they had special 105.22A plates in the engine bay as well, but don't quote me.

I also have a feeling that Alfetta 2000 Autos that came here for evaluation (I think the total number was about 9) were also sourced from SA. (This was 1980/81.)

Can anyone comfirm this?
 

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gtv2000 said:
From Patrick O'Brien's article I quoted above, I have about 40 Alfetta 2000s exported to Australia in 1975. They had to replace the parts where "made in South Africa" was written on.
This can't be right. Surely you mean 40 2000 GTV Autos were exported to Australia from South Africa in 1975? That would make sense.

We didn't get Alfetta 2000s in Australia until 1978.
 

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prn 31 said:
This can't be right. Surely you mean 40 2000 GTV Autos were exported to Australia from South Africa in 1975? That would make sense.

We didn't get Alfetta 2000s in Australia until 1978.
Well I'm ready to believe you, but "2-liter Alfettas" is what P. O'Brien wrote in his article back in 1990. Maybe a typo, or a plain error..

I take note of the correction.
 

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Suds and 33's

Can anyone shed any light on the Sud side of the SA history. There seems to be a lot of information about the other Alfas produced in SA.

Were all RHD Suds produced in SA? Even from the beginning of manufacture? What about the Alfa 33 models? They are based on the Sud chassis so were RHD 33's also produced in SA?

If anyone can shed any light on the sudject it would be much appreciated.

Very interesting history so far...

Josh.
 

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Amarthur

Dear Amarthur,

Did you ever enquire and/or receive a reply, regarding the origin of the Alfa Spider supposedly 'manufactured' in South Africa, from Centro Storico?
 

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Discussion Starter #79
Can anyone give me a guide on how long Centro Storico normally take to respond? I am on the point of sending a follow-up, but would appreciate the guidance rather than pressurise them on what is probably a voluntary service on their part
 
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