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By Charl Bosch

Motoring Journalist

Continue to stare: Alfa Romeo 33 Stradale officially returns

33 Stradale shuns hybrid rumours by offering a choice of either a conventional petrol or an EV producing 552 kW.

After a month of teaser images and little details being provided, Alfa Romeo officially unveiled the revived 33 Stradale at a special showing at its museum in Arese, Milan in Wednesday evening (30 August).

Custom-made supercar

The long awaited replacement for the 4C, confirmed to have debuted to a select number of buyers at a private viewing on the side-lines of last year Italian Grand Prix, Milan’s first limited run supercar since the 8C bows as a customer specific entrant with each of the 33 examples lined-up for production said to be different depending on preference and specification.

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Reportedly already sold-out at a speculated, but not officially confirmed €1-million (R20.5-million) each, the tribute to the original 33 Stradale that debuted as a road going version of the 33 race car, hence the Stradale (street) name, serves as one of Alfa Romeo’s last new combustion engine vehicles in preparation for its move towards complete electrification in 2027.

Alfa Romeo 33 Stradale returns as modern tribute to original
Rear-end styling has elements not only of the original, but also the Disco Volante based on the 8C and even the Lancia Stratos. Image: Alfa Romeo.

The carbon and aluminium fundamentals

Forced to be cancelled along with other earmarked products in 2019 as a result of the merger between former parent company Fiat-Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) and the PSA Group that led to the creation of Stellantis, the 33, which Alfa describes as an “authentic work of art in motion”, boasts a carbon fibre and aluminium monocoque chassis as well as a rear window made from polycarbonate in order to keep weight down.

Paying further homage to the original in not only its styling, the 33 Stradale also comes resplendent with butterfly opening doors, and in a complete reversal, a carbon fibre and aluminium roof with the frames of the doors themselves made out of carbon.

Alfa Romeo 33 Stradale returns as modern tribute to original
Butterfly doors from the original 33 Stradale has been retained for the newcomer. Image: Alfa Romeo.

Equipped with a double wishbone suspension at the front and rear, as well as a hydraulic pump that lifts the nose by 50 mm in order to avoid underside damage similar to the Ferrari Enzo, the 33 Stradale measures 4 637 mm long, 1 966 mm wide and 1 226 mm tall.

Its wheelbase stretching 2 700 mm, the Stradale, despite its carbon and aluminium construction, tips the scales 1 500 kg, although unlike the 4C, the increase in mass comes is expected as a result of not only the proportions, but also more power provided by the standard turbocharged V6 engine.

Mounted on 20-inch alloy wheels, stopping power comes courtesy of a Brembo supplied six-piston mono-block caliper setup at the front and four at the rear, with the ventilated and drilled carbon ceramic discs measuring 390 mm and 360 mm respectively.

Driver focused inside

Styled in-house and sporting a retro interior devoid of a touchscreen, the 33 Stradale also gets a three-spoke drilled steering wheel, overhead switches and a central transmission tunnel with aluminium switchgear.

Alfa Romeo revives 33 Stradale
Interior puts emphasis on the driver and lacks amongst others, an infotainment system. Image: Alfa Romeo.

Designed, according to Alfa Romeo, for the purpose of the driving and driving alone, the dashboard, which is said to an have aviation-inspired look, sports a distinctive aluminium triangular design with both Alcantara and carbon fibre included.

A digital instrument cluster and seats said to have been inspired by the original 33 Stradale rounds the interior off.

V6 petrol…

Previously reported has having links with the Maserati MC20, the 33 Stradale is said to have had no input from its sister brand, but well from the Sauber Formula 1 team, who have been using Alfa Romeo-branded Ferrari engines since the 2018 season.

At the same time, motivation isn’t supplied by the twin-turbocharged 3.0-litre Nettuno V6 as the MC20, but rather a bored-out version of the 2.9-litre bi-turbo V6 used in the Giulia Quadrifoglio Verde (QV) and Stelvio Quadrifoglio.

Alfa Romeo revives 33 Stradale
Switchgear for the suspension settings, mode selector and the aircraft-style gear lever all made out of aluminium. Image: Alfa Romeo.

Now displacing 3.0-litres, the bent-six does delivers the same 463 kW as the MC20 with an aircraft accelerator-type gear lever for the eight-speed dual-clutch gearbox sending the amount of twist to the rear axle only.

Unsurprisingly, homage is paid further by the top speed rated at 333 km/h and the 0-100 km/h sprint of three seconds.

… or EV

Until now believed to be fitted with an electric motor and battery, thus becoming a hybrid with outputs of 588 kW, Alfa Romeo has gone the opposite route by availing the 33 Stradale as an EV only.

Making use of a 102-kWh battery pack driving a single electric motor, the electric 33 will get from 0-100 km/h in the same three seconds as the bi-turbo V6 as a result of developing 552 kW.

Despite tipping the scales at 2 100 kg, the 33 EV will hit 310 km/h and according to Alfa Romeo, travel 450 km on a single charge.

Standard on both models is a drive mode selector with three settings located on the transmission tunnel in the form of an alloy switch; Strada, Pista and Fast Start, the latter engaging launch control via the Quadrifoglio button located at the console’s base.

Not the last special edition

“With the new 33 Stradale, we wanted to create something that lived up to our past, to serve the brand and to make the Alfisti fandom proud,” Alfa Romeo boss Jean-Philippe Imparato said.

“Such a result could only have been achieved thanks to the expertise, hard work and passion of our team, with the support of management who have the clear ambition to contribute to writing chapters in the brand’s future. This is the brand’s first custom-built car since 1969, and I promise it won’t be the last”.

Sorry South Africa

Given its limited production run and claims of already having been sold-out, don’t expect the 33 Stradale to become available in South Africa at any stage.

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