The Petersen Automotive Museum Auction | Lot 236
1960 Alfa Romeo Giulietta SZ Zagato
$600,000 - $750,000 USD
| Los Angeles, California
8 December 2018
- One of 200 produced
- Previously owned by Alfa Romeo distributor and racer Karl Foitek
- Raced in-period at the Nürburgring, Innsbruck, and others
- Extensive historic racing history throughout Europe
- Includes spare engine block
- Exceptional SZ for vintage racing and touring events
Born out of a destroyed Giulietta Sprint Veloce, the Zagato-bodied “SVZ” showed how changing material and body styling can drastically improve speed and agility. Once Zagato and Alfa Romeo displayed the first Giulietta Sprint Zagato at the 1960 Geneva Motor Show, the motoring world was rabid for the vehicle – its predecessor had already proven how successful the SZ would be.
Instantly recognizable as a Zagato body, the SZ (Sprint Zagato) consisted of a Franco Scaglione-designed, rounded body attached to the shorter chassis of the Giulietta Spider. Further reducing the weight, a space frame chassis was used, and Zagato fitted each SZ with Perspex windows and a stripped-down interior. Though a second series would see remodeled bodywork, adding a “Kamm-tail” rear end and a longer nose known as “Coda Tronca,” the SZ offered here is one of the original series – dubbed “Coda Tonda” for their rounded tail.
One of the first ones off the production line, this SZ landed in the hands of Karl Foitek, a noted Alfa Romeo distributer and racer. The car was sold to Foitek directly from Alfa Romeo for a heavily discounted sum in consideration of winning the Swiss championship in a 1959 Sprint Veloce. The car was even personally delivered to him in Zürich by the technical director of Alfa Romeo Svizzera. Foitek would campaign the SZ in international races during the 1960 season, including earning championship points at the Nürburgring, Clermont-Ferrat, Gaisberg, and other races. After retiring from competitive racing, Foitek continued to enjoy his SZ in historic races across Europe throughout the 1980s, including at Hockenheim, Nürburgring, Salzburgring, Montlhéry, and the Targa Florio. The car was eventually retired from racing altogether and remained in Mr. Foitek's private collection until it was acquired by the present owner.
Purchased by the current owner in 2015 from Foitek, the SZ presents today as a naturally beautiful classic, with an older repaint. Having recently completed the full Sports Car Market Tour, it can certainly be said that the Alfa Romeo drives and runs exceptionally well and without issue. As such, this feisty SV would be an ideal candidate for vintage racing and touring events around the world, where eligible. Furthermore, the car includes a spare engine block as well as a spare bucket seat for when one's driving style commands a little more support.
Unquestionably revolutionary in opening the field of motorsport to aerodynamics, the Alfa Romeo Giulietta SZ is an extremely special classic. Here is a rare opportunity to buy a well-preserved and authentic example.