The History Behind Alfa Romeo’s GTAm Name

The Alfa Romeo Giulia GTA and GTAm came out to much acclaim in March. With power to spare and weight spared, it came out looking like a hero. But those not alive during the ’60s, the name might pose something of a mystery.
Both the Giulia and the GTA parts of the name are historic and point towards Alfa Romeo’s intentions with the new car. And as a new video from ISSIMI argues, the allusions to the past make a car that should be savored.
The story starts in the post-war era, when all of Europe (but Italy and Germany especially) were struggling with gas shortages. Like most companies that were making big, luxurious cars in small numbers, Alfa had to make something that people could afford.
Read: Sexy New Alfa Romeo Giulia GTA And GTAm Coming With 532 HP, Less Weight
Alfa set to work making a small car that would still live up to its history of engineering and motorsport brilliance. Thus, the Giulietta was born. Although the early cars were certainly smaller, the engines were at the bleeding edge of technology, using all alloy construction, twin cams, and hemispherical combustion chambers.
By the ’60s, it was time for the Giulia GT. Although its predecessor had been successful in racing, there was no factory effort. By ’63 Alfa Romeo decided it was time to get back into the game and bought Autodelta.
The results would be dominant. Autodelta ended up building the Giulia GTA. The A stands for “alleggerito,” meaning lightened, and boy was it. Alfa managed to cut 500 lbs off the 2,300 lbs car by using exotic alloys, plastic windows, and the absolute latest in technology.
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The result was a touring car that could take on the Lotus Cortina, a car that was heavily modified and driven by some of the best racers of all time, including Jim Clark.
So how does the modern Giulia live up to those standards? Well, it too uses the exotic materials of the day, in this case carbon fiber. Alfa also thinned the windshield and, in the case of the GTAm, threw out the back seats. All in the name helping it cut weight by 200 lbs.
Alfa again, turned to its race team, Sauber, to help make the GTA and GTAm as exciting and fast as possible. And with an extra 35 hp to play with, the results are pretty spectacular.


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