Some think that I coined the saying "A-L-F-A means Always Looking For Another", but I can only take credit for living it! Having been an Alfa fanatic for longer than I can remember, I am always on the lookout for "deals". That's one of the reasons I am able to retain my wonderful Alfa collection.
Having lusted after the Montreal model for many years, I finally purchased one in the late 1990's. While restoring that car I acquired a great deal of knowledge and experience with this extraordinary Alfa. Thus my journey for another one began.
In March of 2000, my son-in-law, who was on his way to my home from Atlanta, called me to say that there was an orange '72 Montreal, AR1426545, for sale in Florida. He (Matt Dawson) and our daughter arrived in Clearwater on Friday night. After a phone call to make sure the Montreal was still available, he and I set out first thing Saturday morning to the Northeast Coast of Florida to check it out.
We found the car on jack stands, the hood standing in the corner, and it obviously had not been driven in quite a while. First impressions were not very good, but fortunately things soon got better. The owner turned out to be Moe Nunn (manager of the Alfa Romeo Formula One team in the late 80's), who had purchased it through Louis Rodriguez of Miami, who arranged the import of several Montreals to the USA during the "grey market" era. While the Formula One mechanics were available to him, Moe had them do a complete engine re-build with all new parts from AFRA in Italy. The mechanics had utilized all lock-nut type fasteners on re-assembly, and had painted the valve covers red. Unfortunately, about the time the Italian mechanics got the assembled engine back into the car, Alfa pulled out of the Formula One business, the mechanics left, and Moe ended up with a "not yet complete" repair job. After several years of unsuccessful attempts to get someone to do the final hook-ups and re-start the engine, Moe decided it might be best to pass his project on to someone else. After some negotiations, it turned out to be me!
I decided to take a chance that the Italian mechanics had done everything correctly and I could eventually sort out the rest of it, so I bought it on the spot. It was about this time that I discovered the Montreal Website and Forum, indispensable sites created and managed by Bruce Taylor in Switzerland. His help was invaluable, and he has since published two books entitled Alfa Romeo Montreal - The Essential Companion and Montreal - The Dream Car That Came True, which are a "must have" for anyone interested in the Montreal. After considerable fretting over ignition and coil wiring, and closely following the manual instructions, I finally had everything attached correctly and it fired right up. The engine re-build by the Italian mechanics turned out to be an extraordinarily fine job.
After re-building the brake hydraulics, putting on new tires, and sorting out a few details, this orange Montreal turned out to be a fantastic head turner where ever I go, and a very enjoyable Alfa to drive.
return to the Alfa Romeo Montreal owners section