Alfa Romeo (S.A. Alfa Romeo, Milan, Italy)
Competitive years: 1938-1940
Horsepower Range: 195-225
The voiturette class was eventually dominated by the 158 Alfetta in 1939 and 1940. However, it is not clear why Alfa did not choose to participate in the voiturette races of the early 1930s. Many of their customers, such as Count Gianni Lurani however, did so using the 6C 1750 reduced to 1500cc and equipped with a lightweight open-wheeled body. They won class victories at the Nurburgring in 1932 and a third place in the 1500cc in the 1933 Czech Grand Prix.
It took the annoying might of the German teams and the 750kg Grand Prix formula to incite Alfa Romeo and Enzo Ferrari to create a voiturette. In doing so, he and designer Gioacchino Colombo created an almost perfect race machine that in its various guises, ruled both pre-war voiturette racing in its closing years and Grand Prix racing from 1946 to 1951. The 158 Alfetta used a straight-eight with a Roots blower and produced a reliable 225 hp before the war. After a period of teething troubles, the cars were unbeatable but for one infamous (for them) event, the Grand Prix of Tripoli in 1939.