Alfa Romeo G1

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Alfa Romeo







The Alfa Romeo G1 was the first all-new design from Alfa Romeo after the end of the A.L.F.A. brand. Giuseppe Merosi, while engaged in a legal dispute with Nicola Romeo regarding the brand takeover conditions, designed the update for the prewar 24HP into the revised 20/30ES and the new luxury G1. The chassis was lengthened and stiffened from the 1914 40-60 HP model, entering into market territory competition with Rolls-Royce. These were grand automobiles, powered by a 6,299-cc side-valve inline six, said to have been designed with input from Enzo Ferrari himself. The engine was based on a pair of cast-iron blocks of three cylinders each with fixed cylinder heads. It was the largest motor ever fitted to an Alfa, with a cylinder bore of 98 mm and a stroke of 140 mm, developing 70 bhp and a substantial 216 ft.-lbs. of torque. The G1 featured a four-speed manual gearbox, which sent power through a single-dry plate clutch and an open driveshaft to the rear axle. There were mechanical brakes on the rear wheels, with an auxiliary contracting foot brake that operated on the transmission. Suspension was by semi-elliptical springs at the front and twin quarter-elliptical springs at the rear. In 1921 its top speed of 138 km/h (86 mph) was considered quite impressive.

A stripped-down version of the G1 won its production class at the Coppa del Garda, but the G1s Alfa Romeo hoped to sell to the general public were hamstrung by the fact that they were very thirsty. With post-World War I Italy struggling through political and economic chaos, customers were reluctant to buy an expensive luxury car and shied away. Looking for a more receptive market, Alfa Romeo exported all 50 production G1s to Australia (as well as possibly South America)

The Alfa Romeo G2, a planned improved version, was never produced after the commercial failure of the G1.

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