1972 Alfa Romeo A12 Car Transporter Coachwork by Scattolini Registration no. XJB 609L Chassis no. AR 996274
Alfa Romeo's factory in Milan had produced large commercial vehicles since 1914, albeit in limited numbers when compared with its direct competitors such as FIAT, Lancia and OM. When the need for a small van arose, Alfa Romeo began producing the 'Romeo' at the Pomigliano d'Arco factory near Naples. The confusingly named 'Alfa Romeo Romeo' was launched in 1954 and in 1956 was superseded by the almost identical Romeo 2. In 1967 the Romeo 2's front panel was revised with a wider chromed grille and the model became known as the 'A12' (truck cab version with open chassis) and 'F12' (closed van version). The A12 and F12 were fitted with the same 1,290cc twin-cam engine that had been in the Romeo 2 and which still drove the front wheels through a ZF four-speed gearbox, although power was now 52bhp (up from 37). Braking was via discs at the front and drums at the rear. Production ceased in 1983. This Alfa Romeo A12 was manufactured as a cab and chassis combination in June 1972 and sold new in Palazzolo sull'Oglio in northern Italy. It was immediately dispatched to Scattolini to be fitted with a car transporter body, which gave it a carrying capacity of 1,000kgs. In 2008 the vehicle was imported to the UK by Black and White Garage from Turin, Italy, where it had been used by a gentleman to transport his large collection of cars to and from film sets. There are only two A12 car transporters known to be in England, both with Scattolini bodies, and very few survive in Italy out of a production run estimated to be fewer than 50. This A12 has never been fully restored. It was repainted a darker shade of its apparently original blue between five and ten years ago and remains in very good condition. It is not perfect, but very presentable. It is believed that the 1.3-litre twin-cam engine and other mechanicals are original to the vehicle; they are at least of the correct type. Black and White Garage carried out a mechanical re-fresh upon acquisition, replacing many steering and drive train components, and it now drives well. Ideal for transporting a lightweight competition car, especially an Italian one, this rare Alfa Romeo A12 is offered with current road fund licence, MoT to July 2013 and Swansea V5C document.