The names Autodelta and Alfa Romeo are inextricably linked thanks to decades of racing success with cars such as the Giulia GTA and the Giulia TZ and TZ2. However, one of the partnership’s most famous and dominant models was the Tipo 33/2, which was created to compete in the World Sportscar Championship in 1968. It was immediately on the pace recording a second-placed finish at Daytona and a first and third in class at Le Mans – a storming performance that resulted in all three Autodelta cars finishing fourth, fifth and sixth overall.
In 1969, the 33/3 appeared with significant changes to the car’s chassis and engine. A key change was the introduction of a titanium-reinforced monocoque and open bodywork. The engine was a new 90-degree 3-litre V8 (the 33/2 used a 2-litre V8) producing 130bhp more than its predecessor.
In its first two seasons the 33/3 recorded individual wins at the Imola 500 and Zeltweg. In 1971, power was increased to 420bhp, a new five-speed gearbox was added and the size of the front wheels was reduced, helping reduce the car's weight by 50kg. These key changes brought immediate success with wins in the Targa Florio, at Watkins Glen and Brands Hatch. By the end of the season, Alfa Romeo was ranked second in the World Sportscar Championship, sandwiched between Porsche in first place and Ferrari in third.
23 June 2014