Alfa Romeo is world renowned for building some of the most lavish and well made automobiles on the market, a symbol of class and comfort. An absolute dream for an auto mechanic, they also have a long standing history of great concept cars, although none have garnered as much praise and attention as their famous concept car, “The Montreal,” which debuted at Montreal’s Expo 67. Now, with the company’s equally impressive 4C having been debuted in Montreal, we’ve decided to take a look back on the history of the company and their relationship with the fair city of Montreal.
Expo 67 and The Montreal
First debuted at the widely celebrated Expo 67 in Montreal, the unnamed concept car unleashed by Alfa Romeo quickly garnered the title of the Montreal because of the city it was debuted in. For years the car would be known by that namesake. The car was a 2+2 coupe that featured a 1300cc engine and a beautiful body designed by Bertone’s Marcello Gandini. It turned many heads when it made its showy arrival in Montreal back in 1967, but production versions of the unique concept car didn’t show up until 1970, and when they did, they were markedly different from the Montreal.
Check out this fascinating footage of the Montreal in action:
The first production version of the car arrived in 1970, referred to as the Tipo 105.64. Although it iffered quite substantially from the concept that was introduced at Expo 67, Alfa Romeo decided to keep the car’s unofficial namesake and dubbed it the Montreal, making the fan title official. With a 2 litre V8 engine, this production car could get up to 7,200 rpm, which was almost unheard of for a V8 engine at the time. This car featured stylistic vents behind the two front doors, and a grill that covered the headlights that would retract when they were switched on. Though it was met with some disappointment because of the stylistic changes it had undergone since debuting in 1967, it enjoyed a brief period of popularity, though ended up selling much more poorly than anticipated. Curiously enough, the Montreal was never sold in Montreal, as Alfa Romeo didn’t make any models for the North American market.
After the Montreal was phased out, it took many years for Alfa Romeo to make the trip back to the Quebec city with something to show off, but it did this year, as they debuted the brand new 2015 4C at the Montreal Grand Prix. One of the most stunning cars in recent history, the wildly beautiful and powerful 4C made a huge splash and the city that lent its name to one of the most publicized concept cars in history welcomed the automaker back with open arms. At 240 horsepower, and a great 42 mpg fuel efficiency, not only is the 4C a beast that will impress your automotive technician friends, but it’s not going set you back thousands in fuel. An excellent return to form for the company, Montreal is glad to have Alfa Romeo back in the city – it’s a celebratory cheer from everyone in auto careers.