In the immediate after-war period Alfa Romeo concentrated their efforts on reproducing their 1939 6C 2500 Series cars affectionately known as the "Golden Arrows," but they were expensive and attracted the best of coachbuilders' art form and therefore were only purchased by the wealthy. They were, in fact, the last individual chassis cars to be built and with the growing interest in medium capacity performance cars, Alfa Romeo introduced their first post-war design - the 1900 Saloon - at the 1950 Paris Salon. This was a complete breakaway from previous traditions in that it was a unit-body construction enabling mass production to be undertaken, thus providing a cheaper car for a wide range of customers, and of compact size. Its new four-cylinder engine continued the twin-cam tradition and provided exhilarating performance for what was, in fact, quite a large motorcar. Alfa Romeo's complete domination of Grand Prix racing with the Type 159 Alfetta considerably helped the marketing of this new road car but their customers expected a range of performance options and this was readily provided by the offering of a T.I. (International Touring) version and then a beautiful two-door coupe with power options ranging from 90 to 115 brake horse power. These new cars were readily entered for prestigious rallies and long distance road races where they performed with great success, regularly being class winners and many times beating the pure race bred 2-liter Ferraris and Maseratis in the Mille Miglia and Targa Florio events. The 1900 won such prestige in the sporting world that it was generally known as "the family car that wins races." When in 1954 they introduced the new 1900 Super Sprint Coupe with coachwork by Carrozzeria Touring the public acclaim for this elegant styling was such that it formed the basis of all future models as a two-door aerodynamic shaped coupe. The direct descendant of this was the new Giulietta Sprint that was launched in 1955, the basis of which provided Alfa Romeo's continued success for the next thirty years. The Super Sprint Coupe was designed to provide a family size sporting two-door coupe with adequate interior space. The heart-shaped vertical front grille with similar sized horizontal air intakes was to become the trademark of future models. The engine was increased in capacity to 1975 cc providing a healthy 115 bhp and with its alloy bodywork the excellent power to weight ratio provided brisk acceleration and a top speed of 120 mph. It has since become on of the most desired of the early post-war 1900 Alfas and the example pictured here is in extremely original condition. It has resided in Sweden throughout its life and been meticulously maintained by its enthusiast owners, and is one of the very few Super Sprints to have been ordered in black, a color which surprisingly enhances its elegant profile. Today, this car would be a competitive entrant in many of the well-known Retro long distance events such as the Mille Miglia and Coppa D'Italia. The Super Sprint rarely comes onto the market and is much sought after by Alfa enthusiasts who realize its historical significance, sporting characteristics and race bred pedigree. While 1900s retain their popularity in Europe, they are a relatively unknown quantity in the U.S. The car described here was a particularly attractive example and appeared to be well-fettled, having appeared in several vintage events. {analysis} On 6 May, 1991 at the Christie's Monaco sale, it sold for $46,688 commission included. While at the time that price was felt to be low, in fact it presaged a collapsing market. 1900 values have continued to hover in the $35,000 - $50,000 range since then, and are unlikely to change in the foreseeable future. - ED.{/analysis}

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