If the Alfa Romeo GTV could talk, it would still be hoarse from its acceptance speeches. In 1995 it garnered at least 10 gongs, two of them from this magazine: Best Sports Car and Car of the Year.
Almost 25 years later, the champagne may have gone flat but this 2+2 coupé (there’s also a two-seater roadster called the Spider) is still impressing enthusiasts, as prices approaching £10,000 attest. Such a sum buys a one-owner, 42,500-mile GTV 3.0 V6 24v Lusso registered in 2001.
But you don’t have to pay that. We turned up an example of the rarer and more sought-after 3.2 V6 Lusso. It’s done 92,000 miles, has full history and is being offered for £7495. It dates from 2003, the year this most powerful version was launched and when the GTV was facelifted for the final time. Twelve months later, production of the coupé ceased as its successor, the Brera, was readied.
The GTV arrived in 1995. Styled by Pininfarina and with a confident, heart-shaped grille incorporating Alfa’s colourful emblem, it’s an attractive car spoiled only by a bland interior that feels a bit low-rent. Subsequent facelifts rounded off the car’s edges and relocated the front numberplate to an offset position, keeping it looking fresh. Bonnet, wings and nose are composite, so no rust concerns there. Elsewhere the body is galvanised, but even so, it’s worth checking for rust in the floor and on the rear arches and sills.
The GTV was initially offered with a 2.0-litre 16-valve Twin Spark engine with 148bhp. Later versions gained a variable intake manifold. For its performance, reliability, smoothness and value, this is the engine to have.
It was followed, in 1998, by a 3.0-litre 24-valve V6 with 217bhp. To go with the higher performance came larger ‘teledial’ alloys with bigger brakes adorned with red calipers.
Today the V6 commands the highest prices, and rightly so, but a well-bought and cheaper TS is the better buy. What’s not such a good buy is the 163bhp 16-valve 2.0 JTS, launched in 2003, that replaced it and which has an appetite for bearings and bores. At the same time, the 3.0-litre V6 was replaced by a 3.2 producing 238bhp for 0-62mph in less than six seconds. Few were sold.