Fiat invested a sizable amount of money to renew the entire Alfa Romeo lineup in the early 1990s. The cars were all inspired by the same angular design language and they were all front-wheel drive, two attributes that ruffled the feathers of brand purists.
A new Spider was presented at the 1994 edition of the Paris Motor Show to take the torch from the venerable 105 / 115-Series Spider that had been continuously produced since debuting in 1966. Called 916-Series internally, the Spider was designed by Pininfarina and characterized by four round headlamps up front, a wedge-shaped silhouette and tail lamps that took the form of a bar, a cue introduced several years earlier on the 164. The car landed in showrooms across Europe in 1995 but it was never sold in the United States because Alfa’s North American division went under that same year.
Inside, the 916-Series Spider was more oriented towards comfort and luxury than its predecessor, a move that helped it take on upmarket rivals like the BMW Z3.
A series of four- and six-cylinder engines (including several Twin Spark units) were offered throughout the car’s production run. The fastest 916 Spider came in 2003, three years before production ended, with a 3.2-liter 239-horsepower V6 engine that propelled it from zero to 62 mph (100 km/h) in 6.3 seconds.
The 916-Series Spider never managed to capture the public’s heart like the 105- and the 115-Series did over the course of the 1960s, the 1970s and the 1980s, but it has held on to its value surprisingly well and a clean example still commands several thousand euros.
is the 916-series Spider a future classic, or will Alfisti avoid it because of its front-wheel drive setup?