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1976 Alfa Romeo Navajo by Bertone

In the world of obscure one-offs, we'd argue few are as interesting as the Alfa Romeo Navajo. The Bertone-designed, spaceship-inspired supercar debuted in 1976 at the Geneva Motor Show. It was the last of a handful of concept cars built on the bones of the iconic 33 Stradale by various Italian design firms. A list includes other oddballs with equally odd names like the Carabo, Iguana, and Cuneo.


Production of the Alfa Romeo 33 Stradale ended in 1969. The rare sports car – of which just 18 were made – ended an era of one of Alfa Romeo's most signature design languages. Noticeably different-looking (though still iconic in their own right) vehicles like the GTV and Montreal arrived in the 1970s, shedding the svelte profile of the 33 Stradale and others for a more angular look.


But long after production of the 33 Stradale ended, Nuccio Bertone got its hands on the chassis (specifically chassis no. 750.33.11) and took the styling in a strange new direction. One of six one-offs – including the Carabo, Iguana, Cuneo, and others designed by Bertone, Giugiaro, and Pininfarina – the Navajo concept sported a never-before-seen look inspired by the future rather than Alfa's iconic past.


Extending the 33 Stradale's base and using fiberglass for the body almost exclusively, Bertone debuted the 33 Navajo concepts at the Geneva Motor Show. A 2.0-liter V8 producing 230 horsepower sat behind the driver. And inside, a reworked cabin assured more room to fit two passengers. Of course, the angular edges, pop-up headlights, and orange accents, complete with appropriate Bertone branding on the embedded wing, gave the Navajo a futuristic look unlike any other. Even the other 33 Stradale concepts before it looked tame by comparison.


Unfortunately, like many concept cars of the day, Bertone built just one example of the 33 Navajo. Reports suggest it has a price tag of around $3 million when new, but it's unclear if the one-off even sold or Bertone ever intended to sell it. Nevertheless, the Alfa Romeo 33 Navajo by Bertone was an interesting look at what could have been.


Debut: 1976 Geneva Motor Show

Engine: 2.0-Liter V8

Specs: 230 Horsepower


Source: 1976 Alfa Romeo 33 Navajo By Bertone: Supercar Sunday. https://www.motor1.com/features/393554/alfa-romeo-navajo-bertone-supercar-sunday/

Images: Bertone Archivio Storico; Alfa Romeo Automobilismo Storico, Centro Documentazione (Arese, Milano)