Currently reading: Alfa Romeo Giulia SWB Zagato: stunning coupe gets GTAm V6
Spiritual successor to the Alfa Romeo SZ is a radical one-off with two doors and 533bhp

The new Alfa Romeo Giulia SWB Zagato is a jaw-dropping two-door V6 super-coupé built to celebrate 100 years of the two Italian firms working together.

Based on the Alfa Romeo Giulia but with a new and completely bespoke carbonfibre body shell, Zagato's latest effort was designed in partnership with Alfa's own design team – headed up by Alejandro Mesonero – as a spiritual successor to the 'Sprint Zagato' (SZ) line of Alfa coupés from the late 1950s - which also inspired the radical 1989 coupé of the same name.

Importantly, though, Zagato says the development and production processes were carried out completely independently, and the Alfa Romeo badge on the front is "solely for descriptive and promotional purposes". 

It's built on the same Giorgio platform as the Giulia, but with a significantly shortened wheelbase "in keeping with Zagato's sporting tradition", and for proportions which more closely ape the 1989 SZ - known as 'Il Mostro'. 

There is only one example, and it has already been acquired by an unnamed German Alfa Romeo collector – who owns a selection of rare Alfa models including an SZ and an 8C Competizione, as well as 'several' Zagato-bodied Aston Martins – for an undisclosed sum. 

3 Alfa romeo giulia swb zagato

It is the latest entry in a long line of 150 Alfa Romeo models rebodied by the Italian design house, which stretches back to 1921's 'Tipo G1', a reworking of Alfa's then luxury flagship. 

Underneath, it is more closely related to the hardcore, track-focused Alfa Romeo Giulia GTAm, sharing that car's fiery 533bhp twin-turbo V6 and adding a six-speed manual gearbox. There's no word on performance figures, but given its two-door carbonfibre shell is likely lighter than that of the larger GTAm, a 0-62mph time of less than 3.5sec is within reach.

Welcoming the new creation, Alfa's Mesonero said: "lfa Romeo "SZ", an acronym that evokes emotions, roots its origins in the deep history of coachbuilding, that of cars made with the sartorial care of those who dress a mechanically in a special way according to the thought, the culture of those ateliers that, like Zagato, in this case, have interpreted the "biscione" brand.

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"The philosophy of this new 2023 SZ is that of the 1960s, with a body driven by simplicity, aerodynamics and lightness."

He called attention to the charismatic '3+3' headlamp design, similar to that worn by Alfa Romeo's current production cars, which was a defining feature of the 1989 SZ, as well as the double-bubble roof and bluff rear end, which he calls "a typical Zagato body style solution". 

Felix Page

Felix Page
Title: Deputy editor

Felix is Autocar's deputy editor, responsible for leading the brand's agenda-shaping coverage across all facets of the global automotive industry - both in print and online.

He has interviewed the most powerful and widely respected people in motoring, covered the reveals and launches of today's most important cars, and broken some of the biggest automotive stories of the last few years. 

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Commenter 25 December 2022

Zagato has got the production number right. Looks too idiosyncratic to justify much higher outputs, but exclusivity guarantees cost recovery. You could hardly tell it apart from zagato's take on Aston Martin at the back. The world is better for having a running version of it.

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Peter Cavellini 21 December 2022

Build one, it may sell for less than it cost to make, that's from design to driving out the Gate price, could they sell more?, yes, I think there's a thousand potential buyers out there who wouldn't flinch at any price, does that matter?, no, no it doesn't, they won't make a difference to pollution levels, you'll never see one on a public road near you, so, come posters, its Christmas, we've all had a tough time over the past two years, let's agree to disagree, merry Christmas everyone!