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1971 Alfa Romeo Spider 1300 Junior: The Family Car

1971 Alfa Romeo Spider 1300 Junior: The Family Car

It wasn’t my dream because I was at the
beginning of my career, so I had no money. I would have never thought
about buying the Duetto. I mean, it happened suddenly; it’s one of the rare occasions
when I can afford the object of my desire. My name is Carlo Niero,
I’m an engineer, and I drive an Alfa Romeo 1300 Spider Junior. The Duetto came about because I woke up
one morning, and we went up the mountains; as Fiat was launching the model 131, they were hosting a competition to see who could cover
the most mileage with a liter of gas. So, I went, but I didn’t think I would win. But on the way to the garage,
the Duetto was there, waiting for me. I took part in this competition.
I wasn’t expecting to win it and I didn’t win it, but I was sure –
because that’s how I woke up that morning – that I was going to win something,
and indeed I won the Duetto. Of course by paying for it. It’s been the family car for many years. Our first vacation, when you were the only child,
we did it in the Duetto. I was working in Florence, so for a week,
I would commute with the duetto with the Duetto, and the week after… I was going back home
with all sort of issues to the car. The Duetto was working fine,
so it was the family car, so we decided to take it to Yugoslavia. because it has a 2+2 configuration and the two back seats (the “emergency seats”),
was where Tiziano sat. Then Ludo was born so I was forced to abandon
the Duetto as a family car, but I still went to work in the Duetto. We call it Duetto, but “Duetto”
is a generic name for the first version, and then Alfa quickly abandoned it. The model is from 1971
and we got it in 1984. It was red. I painted it twice.
The color is called “Rosso Italia 914”, not the “Rosso Alfa 501”
that the Giulietta Spider had. The odometer had maxed out,
which at the time had five digits, but when I bought it secondhand, the first owner didn’t drive it because
he had changed the carburetors, in an attempt to make it
a little zippier, but no, it needed its original ones. The Duetto has a rather peculiar
driving style, meaning you’re sitting in a sky seat, made of artificial leather. The right leg, which is the one that operates
the accelerator, is folded back. The Duetto isn’t exactly comfortable. The 1300 engine is a little small. “Cuore sportivo” was so called
because it was fitted with the old Alfa engine so it had double overhead cams V configuration,
and selenium exhaust valves. It was an attempt to make the Spider
attractive to the general public. Although it was a popular car
compared to the Alfa “Osso Di Seppia” there weren’t many, so after
the 1300 they did 1750 and 2000 version, which were more powerful engines. It was not yet in the FIAT group,
but it had the flaws of the FIAT cars, so it was affected by rust,
the design of the trunk was flawed, so it was easy for the trunk to bend. This one was the last model; the penultimate one was this one and this one
was the “Biscotìn”, which is the “Osso Di Seppia”, and this was 1750 and 2000 version. What do they have in common?
Well, the body shape. When I was a kid, they used to give me
“macchinette” – little car models, as they were called then. In ’92-’93, I started collecting scale model kits again. A kit made of resin and/or white metal, which is basically a lead alloy, is the unrefined model. So, for example, for the Duetto,
these four here are mounted, and are made of resin,
a resin kit. So, the first step is to smooth the surface
of the kit, the maquette, use a file or sandpaper
to smooth them down. Then you put the primer, that is,
the first layer, and then the color. Between the kits and the assembled ones,
I currently have about 700 models. I’ve accumulated many kits over the years, so many that to assemble them all
I’d spend, well maybe not my whole retirement,
but almost. The fact that I can’t afford
the full-size cars makes it possible to have the miniature ones,
the 1:43 scale models. It’s impossible to be mad at this car. Even if it breaks down,
and we come back from the mountains when the Duetto was not perfect,
on top of a tow truck you were there too,
maybe you don’t remember – but you forgive the Duetto
for leaving you stranded. What’s important is that, in the future,
it goes to someone who can appreciate it. And I hope to leave them a car
in the best possible condition and so…

54 comments found

  1. My neighbor used to have one and we drive to the mountains with his Alfa and my karmann Ghia, those were fun to drive

  2. I've been thinking that my dad's Alfas could be one of the reasons I became an architect.
    Thank you for another great video.

  3. Charming little vehicle. I love that he has a slide projector and lots of old slides. It’s a shame that slide film and projectors have all but disappeared. What a wonderful way to enjoy your past experiences. I like this guy, his car, his slides and his models.

  4. I see where the passion of Petrolicious comes from! The original Duetto, the model that came before this was the car featured in The Graduate.

  5. video eccezionale, bella famiglia, fotografia superba, Alfa mokto bello, vito meravigliosa
    outstanding video, beautiful family, superb photography, very nice Alfa, wonderful life

  6. This is the type of Petrolicious film I love the most – the kind where a car becomes a family member rather than an object or a trophy.

  7. Great video. I bought a Series 3 a couple years ago and completely love it, but this video makes me want to get a Series 2 instead.

  8. Come recreation to Indonesia, review story about mini Cooper car from #jujukmargono. Im sorry when this coment not perfect write on English. Than's

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