Without a shadow of a doubt, Italian automotive giants are responsible for countless marvels on four wheels. Only fitting then that each and all of these models came together to celebrate the 77th Italian Republic Day.
Host to these Festa della Repubblica (Festival of the Republic) celebrations was the Italian Club in Groenkloof, Pretoria which had prepared its sizable facilities for the sights, sounds and tastes of the “Bel Paese.” Stalls offering flavourful cuisine, delicatessens and Italian-origin beverages whet the appetites of those attending, but it was an unrivalled display of vehicles that served as the true taste of the day. Among these sensations was the visceral presence of Ferraris, Lamborghinis, Alfa Romeos, Abarths, Fiats and plenty of other models that hail from the Italian nation.
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Several rarities existing in the country came to basque in the warmth of the African sun including a Lamborghini Diablo SV, of which 346 units were reportedly ever made that sat adjacent to Enzo’s final sign-off before his passing, the pride and joy of all Ferraristi; a Rosso Corsa F40. Alongside these two models from yore was also a Testarossa, a V12 powered 550 Spyder which flanked a selection of pre-1990s Prancing Horses.
In the corner of Lamborghini, two other models stole the crowd – a Novitec Aventador SVJ and a brand new Huracán STO, enticing spectators with all its adorned aero glory. Ferrari also had their most powerful production model ever created in the SF-90, equipped with carbon fibre wheels shimmering underneath the warmth of the sun.
With more affordable price tags, the location was also brimmed with dozens of quirky-styled but uniquely outfitted Fiat 500 Abarth derivatives from the Ciao Club. Dominated by both new and old, meticulously maintained and brightly coloured models shared their Italian character with lovers of La Dolce Vita.
Intertwined in the history books with Ferrari and subsequently Lamborghini, the Busso and twin-cam powered Alfa Romeos proved once again to be the sports car for the working man, with close to 50 models on display, spanning back over 60 years with the oldest, Alfisti had the opportunity to see some equal rarities with a Giulietta Spider of the 1950s, a DTM styled 155 DTM and a Fiat 5-cylinder turbocharged swapped 146.
A solitary Lancia Stratos, finished in Alitalia livery also made a cameo, which added more depth to the splendour alongside the Ducati’s, Aprilia’s and Vespa club that came out in their numbers and represented Italy, as two-wheeled creations.
Serving as a testament to creations that have stood the test of time, this was a fitting tribute for Italy’s 77th anniversary of the Republic Day – at least from the discernible pallet of a petrolhead!
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All images taken by Ivano Mattiello (@ivanomatt)
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