I spent most of my formative years in a large town in Litchfield County Connecticut. While its considered the largest town in CT, New Milford is definitely still a town. No large buildings, only hills and the wide Housatonic River running through the valley.
In the the early 90s, as you passed over Memorial Bridge, nearing Main Street on the the right, you could find a small car dealer that captured the imagination. I’m not referring to Southworth’s, which sold the practical K-Cars and minivans from Chrysler. Instead I’m talking about A.L.F.A. (Alfa Romeo). Neither of these dealers has survived into the present. And while a 90’s Dodge Omni or Caravan rarely passes you, occasionally an Alfa Spider or 147 will. And anyone slightly into cars (and old enough) knows exactly how these odd, but eye-catching Italian lines found their way to the beautiful Litchfield Hills of Connecticut.
A.L.F.A. is actually one of the original car companies from the early 1900s (like Benz, etc). But it reminds me of SAAB because its name ALFA is also born from an acronym (Anonima Lombarda Fabbrica Automobili). Like SAAB (in all Caps), it too was an innovative, state-run auto company. Born in Milan, in 1910, and later sold, ALFA still runs strong today supported by it’s proud parent Fiat.
Alfa Romeo – the Romeo added later by one of its earliest acquisitions – is solid and ready to return to the U.S. market with a full line of products. A Mini-Beatlesque fun car (MiTO), practical mid-size (Giulietta), new Spider and eventually an SUV (C-SUV expected-2014).
Since the sight of a SAAB 900 Turbo’s artful beauty is becoming rare these days, it’s nice to know a possible alternative is being resurrected in the mind of A.L.F.A.
For more information about Alfa Romeo’s hundred year history visit:
Photo Courtesy of Motor Authority