A review of the Alfa Romeo GTA Italian touring car,
Title: The Devastator
|After the disappearance of the European
Championships and World Touring Car, the main countries of the old
continent developed different possibilities to keep alive this interesting
specialty at national level. Over time, the ones that have evolved
have been the events in Italy and Germany, initially based on the
regulation of Group A, but equating the forces of the contestants
through a variety of forms.
Divided into several categories, the CIVT (Campionato Italiano di veicolo de Turismo) has its maximum exponent in the Super Touring. In this discipline are officially involved major European companies on the market trans, giving lots of color to each and every one of the races.
During the last seasons, Alfa Romeo has been central actors in the pageant, with very good results with the late 75 Evoluzione front of a large legion of BMW M3 and Ford Sierra Cosworth, among others. But with the arrival of the new 155, the brand decided to change the model, to promote his latest creation. Developed in this way, and in a very short space of time, the impressive GTA that we have had occasion to try. And precisely this is partly the reason for the newly introduced street Q4 155, and the cause, as we shall see, that this car is mechanically based on the Lancia Delta HF Integrale.
|Based on the 155 Q4, Alfa Romeo has developed one of the most hellish world racing machines, returning to to show their traditional know-how in these struggles. With 400hp, AWD and a multitude of cutting-edge solutions and sophisticated, the GTA is so highly effective that is sweeping dictatorial in the highly competitive Italian Touring Car Championship.
To continue staying in CIVT privilege positions
using the 155, Arese brand needed to have a fully competitive car
in no time. Being the new model a front wheel drive, this was very
complicated. To face with the powerful and efficient rear propulsion
of the other pageant's contenders with certain guarantees, the 155
had become all-wheel drive. Alpha, already fully integrated in the
FIAT group, had at its disposal all the mechanical components of
the Delta unbeatable rally, which could be dressed with the 155’s
“skin” and adapted to the circuits by Alfa Corse’s experienced technicians.
So said and done: he conceived a production car that offers the
new range of benefits and to allow approved version both in Group
A, and was born 155 GTA (Gran Turismo Aleggeritta), named with an
acronym that recalled unforgettable successes in competition for
Small paragraph at the right of the third page: Eighty million ("pesetas" old Spanish currency) has cost to build each of the seven units of the effective Alfa GTA. The end result gets the car on the track and applied the technology fully justified. Among the technical display showed is the made Alfa Corse's box with six gears, the body, almost entirely made of carbon fiber and Kevlar, the awesome brakes, Magneti Marelli sophisticated electronics and aerodynamic study has been submitted to the car in the tunnel wind.
|The realization of this monster of the competition had to go through a meticulous work of tuning and conversion, to ensure that the mechanism is adapted to the platform 155 and both formed a totally balanced and competitive. We are thus confronted with a car that technically is a marvel and has been optimized in all aspects, clearly surpassing the competitiveness of the baseline. To start, aerodynamics has been thoroughly evolved in the wind tunnel, both to get the engine cooling as needed to achieve maximum efficiency in track, helping also to be refined to keep the car frame firmly....
....adhered to the asphalt. The 155 GTA has a numerous
air inlets to cool the front brakes and mechanisms in the latter
case without need for electric fans, which can also contain the
total weight. Even the exterior mirrors are designed to vent the
cabin and make the pilot's life more bearable in such a furnace.
Front spoiler, lower fairings, side skirts and two air outlet tunnels
in the back allow the car to get some downforce, which helps improve
The engine was where there was hardly anything to
do. Lancia maximum evolved, simply has adapted its use for performance
circuit, being a little more powerful and with a high rev character
than the Delta.
And it is not exactly easy. The gear ratio of gears
forced us to use the lever more frequently than desired. The group
was long for the winding route of Varano, as the GTA of our test,
the second unit of Larini, came from the very fast track at Imola.
But despite all, the GTA denoted be easier to tame than a priori
expected, and noble enough to avoid any unpleasant surprises. In
the faster sections showed a little understeer, almost neutral,
resulting in ease of driving.
In summary, we can say that the Italian brand has achieved a fully balanced set, which is not a foolishness when it comes to a car that develop 400 hp at race conditions. In our test, with less blown turbo, we should be about 340/350 hp, enough to experience an amazing adrenaline rush through his lightning acceleration, sufficient also to perceive the unforgettable sensations that only a win machine like this is capable of transmitting.
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