Alfa vs Mercedes in upcoming Dorset auction
DVCA are offering limited editions from both the Alfa Romeo and Mercedes-Benz stable during their up-coming DVCA auction on September 13 – and we think they're worth a look
Choosing between the finest of Italian metal from Alfa Romeo and tank-like quality of an old-school Mercedes-Benz has always been a challenge. It's a battle of heart and head, one exuding passion (and various fluids), the other being a little more sensible. Whichever side of the fence you're on, an example from each thoroughbred stable are two of the best picks from Dorset Vintage & Classic Auctions upcoming September 13 sale.
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As you'll be able to tell from the estimated auction prices, these highly-specified, finely-tuned and drop-dead gorgeous saloons offer a huge chunk of heritage and an awful lot of car for the money. But which one to go for?
1992 Alfa Romeo 75 T-Spark
Estimate: £5000 - £7000
Gaining its name from Alfa Romeo's 75th-anniversary celebrations in vehicle manufacture, the 75 fittingly possessed near-perfect balance courtesy of a transaxle design and considerable racing pedigree. Gleaned from several decades of serious competition in motorsport, the 75's handling and charisma were second to none.
With its sharp, angular aesthetic lines and square headlamps, Alfa's new boy appeared unquestionably modern when introduced in 1985; despite the 75’s overall character clearly showcasing inherited innovation from days gone by.
Contemporary interior features included a dashboard-mounted diagnostic computer, front electric window switches mounted in the roof and a handbrake which looked suspiciously like a briefcase handle.
Besides offering an intriguing blend of blockish looks combined with unexpectedly delicate and precise driving ability, the 75 was also the first model to showcase the marque’s development of twin-spark technology, which resulted in improved engine torque and fuel economy and went on to be utilised in many more models down the line.
Although highly capable, the 75 was unfortunately overshadowed by its rivals of the day, meaning those that remain are rare survivors. Unusual within classic circles, this rarity has not yet resulted in sky-high purchase costs, so for an authentic but reasonably priced introduction to the joys of Italian motoring, this Alfa Romeo 75 makes for a very tantalising prospect indeed.
Factor in over £21,000 of upgrades and maintenance work on this particular 75 courtesy of Clive Hodgkin from Avon Racing, with Recaro seats, alloy road wheels and a stainless steel exhaust thrown in – we can’t quite believe that this Alfa is even looking for a home.
1993 Mercedes-Benz 190E LE Auto
Estimate: £6000 - £7000
Launched in 1982, the Mercedes-Benz 190 was built to compete with BMW’s highly successful 3 Series, the Audi 80 and Saab 900. It was the first compact executive car to be manufactured by the well-known German marque. Critics claimed the market gamble wouldn't work, but they were soon silenced. In fact, they devoured lashings of humble pie as 190 sales took off.
Despite the new venture into smaller vehicular proportions, several elements strongly associated with Mercedes-Benz –including sturdy build quality, notable ride comfort and unyielding reliability – remained as true as ever.
The 190 proved an instant hit, particularly within the European markets, and over 2 million examples went on to be sold within the following decade. The E editions featured Bosch's multi-point fuel injection that delivered more power and improved fuel economy, which proved a popular choice.
Several decades later, the durable bodywork and impressive mechanical longevity of the 190 means the model is now an appealing and mostly problem-free classic option. Even those with the mechanical sympathy of a spotty 17 year old teenager can't break it.
This 190E is also rather rare, being number 792 of 1000 limited edition vehicles specifically geared towards the UK and Irish markets.
As well as being in immaculate condition throughout, this 190E LE comes with four electric windows, electric aerial, 8-hole alloy wheels, Blaupunkt Verona CR43 Radio/cassette player, walnut wood trim, rear headrests and an official limited edition certificate. This is a particularly solid 190E and well worth consideration given the comprehensive original extras that are included.
You can view the full auction listings here.
Classic Cars for Sale
DESCRIPTIONAlfa Romeo 75 Turbo America, year 1991, km 97.000 one owner, intact, always kept in garage, always Alfa Romeo original servicing, just put through a complete inspection. Unique, powerful and reliable car, used only on weekends for small runs. A piece of Italian history. The car has been on several photographic sets, a real queen. Transport option with a company specialized in national
Built in June 1964, this is one of less than 2000 1300 Sprints produced between 1963-65, and being a late car it benefits from factory fitted front disc brakes. It is thought to have been raced from new, with previous FIA papers referencing the 1965 Rally of Spa and the 1967 Zandvoort Nordsee Cup. It has been raced throughout Europe since the 1990s in the hands of previous owners including Hans Sc
The one to have. Ultimate round tail, tipo 10558 factory RHD model (only 600 made), ready for immediate enjoyment. History of this car We’re still researching the full history of this car, but we do know it was supplied new to South Africa. The round tail spider model, Battista Pininfarina’s last design was never exported to the South African market in CKD form, unlike other Giulia 105 serie