Unsupportive Upholstery: 1987 Alfa Romeo Spider Veloce 43K – Sold?

by | Jul 2023 | Classifinds, Sports Car Saturday

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August 19, 2023, Update – We confirmed the listing for this “ClassiFIND” expired, so with no replacement found, we’re assuming this ride is “Sold?” While this one got away, please reach out either by email or call us directly if you’d like to be informed when we come across something similar.

I advise anyone considering buying any classic car to immerse yourself in becoming knowledgeable about the make and model.  The Internet provides a wealth of free knowledge and pictures to make even non-car enthusiasts spot things wrong with a particular car they are considering buying.  Being able to call out subtle problem sports is especially critical when you’re buying a car sight unseen online.

One example is this Black 1987 Alfa Romeo Spider Veloce Series 3 for sale.  First spotted in July 2023 on Craigslist in Hingman, Massachusetts (Boston), this all-black Alfa Spider for sale looks like a nicely detailed, survivor-quality example, especially with only 43,000 miles on the odometer. While the exterior doesn’t raise any red flags, something about the interior did not look quite right.  Comparing the seat bottoms to other Series 3 Spiders reveals a poorly executed reupholstery:

1987 Alfa Romeo Spider Veloce For Sale

To the untrained eye, an unsuspecting and unknowledgeable buyer may not even realize how bad the reupholstery work is in this car. It begs two questions. First, with only 43K miles on the odometer, why did this 1987 Alfa Romeo require reupholstery in the first place? Second was the reupholstery of the seller’s amateur DIY attempt, or did they actually pay someone for subpar work?  Our worst fear is perhaps the seller themselves didn’t know it until a knowledgeable buyer informs them otherwise.  We would also ask the seller for pictures of the undercarriage, engine, and trunk before sending them a deposit.

Last offered for $6,300, Classic.com, the analytics and search engine for the collector car market, confirms the seller’s ask is well below this guide’s one-year average price of most comparable examples.  By clicking on the green dots in the graph below, you can get a sense of what comparable Series 3 Spiders sold for in the past rolling twelve months:

As a second data point, the  Collector Car Market Review Online Tool reveals the seller’s ask falls between this guide’s #4 “Fair” estimate of $3,400 and its #3 “Good” appraisal of $7,450.

The 1987 Alfa Romeo Spider Veloce is a classic sports car epitomizing Italian design and driving pleasure. As a convertible, it combines elegant aesthetics with an exhilarating open-top driving experience. Alfa Romeo produced the Spider Veloce from 1966 through 1994 in four distinct updates.  The Series 3 Update debuted in North America for the 1982 model year, introducing Bosch electronic fuel injection to replace the SPICA mechanical fuel injection.  The interior received a new center console, lower dash panels (to meet U.S. regulations), and a single monopod gauge cluster (with electronic gauges).  Minor changes occurred from 1986 to 1989, including new paint colors, a center high mount stop lamp (CHMSL) midway through 1986 for North American models, a move away from the brown carpet, and a new turn signal lever.

The Alfa Romeo Spider Veloce boasts timeless and graceful styling. It features sleek and curvaceous lines characteristic of the era’s Italian sports cars. The exterior design exudes a sense of elegance and sophistication, capturing attention wherever it goes. The car sits low to the ground, giving it a sporty stance, and its compact dimensions contribute to its agile handling.

The front fascia showcases a prominent Alfa Romeo grille with the iconic badge in the center. The hood is sculpted and flows seamlessly into the windshield, which is framed by chrome trim. The headlights are encased in stylish housings, and below them are integrated fog lights for improved visibility. The rear end is equally attractive, with taillights that wrap around the fenders and a subtle rear spoiler that adds a touch of sportiness.

One of the highlights of the Alfa Romeo Spider Veloce is its convertible top, which is manually operated. It can be easily raised or lowered, allowing occupants to enjoy the open-air experience at their convenience. The soft top is made of high-quality materials, providing excellent insulation when closed from noise and weather elements.

Inside the cabin, the Spider Veloce offers a driver-focused cockpit designed to enhance the overall driving experience. The seats are upholstered in premium leather, providing both comfort and support during spirited drives. The interior features a combination of classic and modern elements, with a focus on simplicity and ergonomics.

The dashboard is clean and uncluttered, featuring analog gauges providing essential information about the vehicle’s performance. The three-spoke steering wheel feels sporty and perfectly positioned for spirited driving. The center console houses various controls, including the audio system and climate control, within easy reach of the driver. Overall, the interior exudes a sense of understated luxury with attention to detail in the craftsmanship.

The Alfa Romeo Spider Veloce is renowned for its thrilling performance on the road. Powering the 1987 model is a 2.0-liter inline-four engine, delivering a respectable output of around 120 horsepower. The engine is mated to a five-speed manual transmission, which allows for precise gear changes and enhances the engaging driving experience.

Thanks to its lightweight construction, the Spider Veloce offers nimble handling and excellent agility. The rear-wheel-drive setup, coupled with a well-tuned suspension, provides superb balance and responsiveness, allowing the driver to enjoy twisty roads and corners with confidence. The precise steering and responsive brakes further enhance the car’s dynamic capabilities.

The 1987 Alfa Romeo Spider Veloce is a classic sports car combining elegant Italian styling and an engaging driving experience. Its timeless design, open-top versatility, and spirited performance make it a highly desirable vehicle for enthusiasts and collectors alike. Whether cruising along coastal roads or navigating through mountain passes, the Spider Veloce offers a thrilling and unforgettable journey for those who appreciate the art of driving.

The Classic Motorsports YouTube Channel provides a nice overview making the case of why you should buy an Alfa Romeo Spider:

The Alfa Romeo Spider Veloce remains an excellent classic car value if you can find one that’s mechanically well-sorted and has been put away dry and unsalted regularly.  We would like to know the story behind why the seat bottoms on this 1987 Alfa Romeo Spider Veloce for sale required upholstery with only 43K miles on the clock. Regardless of the story, we would address those cushions ASAP as not only do they detract from the car’s interior, but they very likely provide zero lateral support during spirited driving.

If you are serious about buying this Spider Veloce, you can start the conversation by using the contact information provided by the seller in their Craigslist ad.  When you connect, please mention that you saw their Alfa featured here on GuysWithRides.com. Good luck with the purchase!

Here’s the seller’s description:

“1987 Alfa Romeo Spider Veloce Pininfarina
43,000 miles
Runs excellent and looks quite good.
Power windows and mirrors
Factory AC – but needs recharge or repair
Recently tuned up by Alfa Romeo dealership
$6,300, or please make an offer

Keep or toss: What would you do with this Alfa’s seat cushions?  Please comment below and let us know!

1 Comment
  1. 1987 Alfa Romeo Spider Veloce For Sale

    The sear cushions are a curiosity because the rest of the interior and the seat backs look to be in quite good condition. Forty thousand miles would not have degraded the seat material requiring replacement and if the Alfa’s clock had turned, the rest of the interior would have shown comparable wear. Very curious!

    Reply

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