Wheels and Tires
Stock Berlina wheels are silver or grey painted steel, 14" x 5 1/2". (I've seen enough Berlinas with black-center, silver-rim wheels to make me think that pattern was standard at some point too.) There is a ring of holes arranged around the wheel. 1750 models have a snap-on stainless steel hubcap, with a black and silver decorative plastic ring containing the words ALFA ROMEO, which fits over three raised tangs on the wheel center. 1750 models have left-hand thread lug nuts on the left side, right-hand thread lug nuts on the right side, though this doesn't directly affect the wheel. At right is a 1750 Berlina wheel, incorrectly fitted to my Giulia Super, which ought to have 15" wheels and Giulia hubcaps, which differ slightly.
The stock steel wheel on the 2000 models looks very much like the 1750 wheel, but doesn't have the three raised tangs, and used a dished captive stainless steel wheel center that is trapped by special long, shouldered acorn lug nuts. There are two type of wheel centers used on 2000s. I believe early 2000s used the type with a black and silver plastic Alfa emblem, and the later type used a stamped-in Alfa emblem, but am uncertain of the order. 2000 models have right-hand thread lug nuts on both sides and longer wheel studs than 1750s. At right is a stock 2000 wheel showing both types of stainless wheel centers, along with the shouldered lug nuts. Most likely this particular wheel has been repainted, in a slightly more metallic silver than the stock color.
Aluminum alloy wheels in a "turbina" design based on the Montreal wheel of 1967 (allegedly they also came in magnesium, which I've never seen) were an available option beginning with the 2000 model in 1972. These wheels are also 14" x 5 1/2", and there are detail variations on the (at least four) different versions of the turbina design. Several different companies produced the wheels, most commonly Campagnolo and Cromodora. Campy turbinas have sharper edges to them, looking die cast, while Cromodora wheel has softer lines, appearing sand cast. These wheels were commonly fitted as mandatory options on US Berlina, Spiders, and GTVs. I believe they were less common outside the US. Above is a Campy turbina fitted to my 1973 2000 Berlina.
The original tires on these cars were 165 HR 14 radials, as specified in the 1973 owner's manual. I have heard that cars were fitted with 175 HR 14 tires by the end of the 2000 run, but don't have proof of this. Motor Trend magazine, in a comparison test in October 1974, drove a Berlina fitted with turbinas and 175-14 tires. Perhaps this size came standard with turbinas.
Early cars came with either Pirelli, Michelin, or Kleber tires. On later cars, those makes of tires were interchangeably provided, as well as Firestone, Continental, and Ceat. Common modern replacement tires of nearly the same diameter (to keep the speedometer "accurate") are 185/70-14. Higher performance sizes include 195/70-14, 195/60-14, and various wider lower aspect tires on 15 inch or 16 inch wheels.
Copyright © 1997 by Andrew D. Watry
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