26 April 2010

Zagato Alfa racer: yes, please, now

Italian design house reveals coachbuilt, retro TZ3 race car. Time to party like it’s 1963…

Zagato Alfa Romeo TZ3 Corsa

Last week, we warned you that Zagato was planning to unveil a coachbuilt Alfa racer at the Concorso d'Eleganza in Italy.

We warned it might be spectacular.

And hell, isn't it just?

See pics of the Zagato Alfa Romeo TZ3 Corsa

This is, to give it its full name, the Zagato Alfa Romeo TZ3 Corsa, and we are entirely besotted with its Kamm-tailed, breadvan profile.

If you think it looks a bit... awkward around the posterior, have a quick Google image search for ‘Alfa TZ1' and ‘Alfa TZ2', the 1960s coupes that are the spiritual forebears of this big-arsed racer. It's a gorgeous reinterpretation of a classic design, and if you don't like it, you're plainly wrong.

The TZ3 was commissioned by German collector Martin Kapp, which means it's strictly a one-off. Sorry. Unlike the TZ1 and TZ2, which were powered by modest 1.6-litre four-pots, the TZ3 gets a dry sumped 4.2-litre V8 developing around 420bhp.

In a racer weighing just 850kg, that's good for a 0-62mph time under 3.5 seconds, and a top speed in excess of 180mph. The power reaches the rear wheels through a six-speed sequential race box.

So no, it's not road legal. Not by a long way, especially with fat slick Pirelli tyres front and rear.

Cost? Your guess is as good as ours. You'd have to ask Herr Kapp very, very nicely, and even then we'd guess he won't tell you.

But approach Zagato with an Alfa 8C you're happy to see hacked to pieces, and a blank cheque backed up by a sufficiently stratospheric bank balance, and we'd guess they'll cook you up something similar.

Tempted? You should be.

Sam Philip

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