What My Cars Want For the Holidays: Part 2

1961 Alfa Romeo Giulietta Sprint Speciale

Last week I shared what the 1958 Alfa Romeo Sprint Veloce, 1965 Alfa Romeo Giulia Spider Veloce1984 Land Rover D901967 Volvo Amazon2000 Dodge Viper GTS ACR and 2001 Porsche 911 Turbo had on their wish lists.

Here’s what the rest of the gang asked for:

From your 1961 Alfa Romeo Giulietta Sprint Speciale: I’m your sexiest car, and I know I’ll be a favorite once I’m back on the road. Just like my buddy the Giulia Spider Veloce, I just want to be a car again. I was stored for nearly 30 years in a museum in the Cayman Islands, so bringing me back to life has been an all-encompassing project. Nasko has my engine nearly ready to go, including high-compression 1,400-cc pistons, modern Pittatori cams and titanium followers. Tom Black has welded up the holes in my dash and tidied up my engine compartment. I know you’ve decided not to address my radiused rear wheel arches until you get me running and driving.

From your 1967 Alfa Romeo Giulia Super: I am ready to rumble. You know I’m your favorite four-door sedan. With my heater and blower motor fan repaired by Nasko, I can actually keep you warm in the winter. I do need some of the rubber trim around my doors replaced, and I’ll try to remember to remind you when you place your next order with Matt Jones’ Re-Originals.

From your favorite red convertible, your 1967 Alfa Romeo Duetto: Guy Recordon at Guy’s Interior Restorations is deep in the restoration of my factory Pininfarina hard top. I was hoping to have it finished in time for winter, but I’ll take early spring. It is so stylish with its rear quarter-windows. I have no idea if I’ll ever really wear it, but I’ve always thought the hard tops were extremely attractive, and I know having one is a bucket-list item for you.

From your 1967 Alfa Romeo GTV: You’ve stored me across town all season, and I feel like you’ve forgotten about me. But I know that I’m your favorite GT car, and I’m ready to come home. I need my seat heater wires on the passenger’s side reconnected (you pulled them loose when you forgot how the heater switch worked and couldn’t get the seat to stop cooking the passengers). Last year I wrote about wishing you would replace the glass faces on the two smaller gauges (oil temperature and pressure, and fuel level and water temperature). I know you’ve got spare faces; you just need to get around to swapping them. After all, it’s been a year since I asked.

Which brings us to the two babies in the collection, the 1971 Citroën Méhari and the 1960 Austin-Healey Bugeye Sprite. These cars are both new to the SCM collection since last Christmas.

From the Méhari: I’m still basking in the glow of my successful event debut in the Portland Urban Safari. Citroën guru Bill Lonseth has promised to reattach my grille (it fell off when we were cutting donuts under an overpass — really) and get my new leather hood straps installed. Bringing me back to life has been an adventure for everyone involved, and it’s very satisfying to be back on the road. I certainly attract attention.

From Bradley’s car, the 1960 Bugeye, Bradley’s car: Don’t forget me! Commonwealth Classics has just finished rebuilding my engine, and I have great oil pressure. My 948-cc engine has high-compression pistons, a lightened flywheel, hotter cam and oversize sump, and I feel quite perky if I do say so myself. Commonwealth has also rebuilt my front end and gone through the brakes. I’m having my transmission overhauled now, as I keep popping out of 1st gear. Once that’s done, I’ll be ready to come home and start spending some quality time with Bradley.

I’ve promised all the cars not to buy any more until I finish up some of these projects. The Bugeye, Sprint Speciale and Giulia Spider Veloce are all having major surgery, but soon enough they will be finished and coming home.

Well, maybe not really “finished,” as old cars always seem to find just one more thing that needs to be tinkered with. But at least I can see a time in the near future when all of my four-wheeled children will be back under the same roof.

Keith Martin

Keith Martin has been involved with the collector car hobby for more than 30 years. As a writer, publisher, television commentator and enthusiast, he is constantly on the go, meeting collectors and getting involved in their activities throughout the world. He is the founder and publisher of the monthly Sports Car Market and bi-monthly American Car Collector magazines, has written for the New York Times, Automobile, AutoWeek, Road & Track and other publications, is an emcee for numerous concours, and has his own show, “What’s My Car Worth,” shown on Velocity.

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