Alfa Romeo Disco Volante

1952 Alfa Romeo Disco Volante

Designed in Italy during the dawn of the space-age, Alfa Romeo’s first racing prototype in a decade was quickly dubbed the “Disco Volante” (Italian for Flying Saucer) in response to it’s thoroughly contoured, aerodynamic design.  It immediately  divided racing professional and enthusiast into two camps:  one that considered the vehicle to be a complete and utter waste of time, energy, and money; and the other that thought the design was pure genius.

As it turns out, both were right.

Breaking New Ground

After the 2nd World War, Alfa Romeo was the car manufacturer to beat on the Grand Prix circuit and during the early concept phase of the prototypes the confidence was apparent as the Alfa Romeo brass has visions that such a vehicle might quickly overtake newer American and German designed sports cars as the car of choice on the LeMans and Monacco venues, however they quickly realized the shortcomings in terms of quality validation at sustained speeds.  While these issues were solvable, only 3 were ever produced and 2 tested, and the Alfa Romeo racing team quickly moved to concentrate on more traditional single-seat racing cars like the Alfa Romeo’s Tipo Alfetta

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