The Alfa Romeo Tipo 33 Is One of the All-Time Great Sports Prototypes

The tube-framed Alfa Romeo Tipo 33 was raced for ten years, bookending its career with significant wins.

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YouTubePetrolicious

In 1967, Alfa Romeo introduced its first sports prototype race car, the Tipo 33. One year later, it won the 2.0-liter class at Daytona 24 Hours, and in 1977, it swept all eight rounds of the World Sportscar Championship. Yes, the tube-framed Alfa Tipo 33 was in service for 10 years, and in that time, became a legend.

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For its latest video, Petrolicious got three of the best Tipo 33s together for a rip around Alfa Romeo's Balocco proving grounds. There's an early 33/2, like the car that won Daytona, and two later 33TT12s which dominated in the World Sportscar Championship in 1975 and 1977. And Petrolicious didn't skimp out on drivers either—Alfa legends Arturo Merzario and Nanni Galli are here, as is Derek Bell.

The early 33/2 has to be one of the prettiest sports cars of all time. It's powered by a tiny 2.0-liter V8 which was later developed into the 2.6-liter unit used in the Alfa Montreal. The 1975 car has a brawny flat-12 and the 1977 car ups the ante with a turbocharger. All sound wonderful.

The Tipo 33 is a fascinating chapter in Alfa Romeo's motorsports history. How many other race cars have such a long life, changing so much in the process?

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