Italian motor manufacturer Alfa Romeo has participated many times in Formula One. It currently participates as Alfa Romeo Racing while being operated by Sauber Motorsport AG. The brand has competed in motor racing as both a constructor and engine supplier sporadically between 1950 and 1987, and later as a commercial partner since 2015. The company's works drivers won the first two World Drivers' Championships in the pre-war Alfetta: Nino Farina in 1950; and Juan Manuel Fangio in 1951. Following these successes Alfa Romeo withdrew from Formula One.
During the 1960s, although the company had no official presence in the top tier of motorsport a number of Formula One teams used independently developed Alfa Romeo engines to power their cars. In the early 1970s, Alfa provided Formula One support for their works driver Andrea de Adamich, supplying adapted versions of their 3-litre V8 engine from the Alfa Romeo Tipo 33/3 sports car to power Adamich's McLaren (1970) and March (1971) entries. None of these engine combinations scored championship points.
In the mid-1970s, Alfa engineer Carlo Chiti designed a flat-12 engine to replace the T33 V8, which achieved some success in taking the 1975 World Sportscar Championship. Bernie Ecclestone, then owner of the Brabham Formula One team, persuaded Alfa Romeo to supply this engine free for the 1976 Formula One season. Although the Brabham-Alfa Romeo's first season was relatively modest, during the 1977 and 1978 World Championships their cars took 14 podium finishes, including two race victories for Niki Lauda.
The company's sporting department, Autodelta, returned as the works team in 1979. This second period as a constructor was less successful than the first. Between the company's return and its withdrawal as a constructor at the end of 1985, Alfa works drivers did not win a race and the team never finished higher than sixth in the World Constructors' Championship. The team's engines were also supplied to Osella from 1983 to 1987, but they scored only two World Championship points during this period.
The Alfa Romeo logo returned to Formula One in 2015, appearing on the Scuderia Ferrari cars. In late 2017, Alfa Romeo announced that they were to become title sponsors for Sauber from 2018, and had entered into a technical and commercial partnership with the team. Alfa Romeo returned to the sport as their own team when Sauber was renamed at the beginning of 2019.
|Alfa Romeo Racing-Ferrari|
|Full name||Alfa Romeo Racing|
|Base||Hinwil, Zürich, Switzerland|
|Team principal(s)||Frédéric Vasseur|
|Technical director||Simone Resta|
|Previous name||Sauber F1 Team|
|2019 Formula One World Championship|
|Race drivers||7. Kimi Räikkönen|
99. Antonio Giovinazzi
|Test drivers|| Tatiana Calderón|
Juan Manuel Correa
|Formula One World Championship career|
|First entry||1950 British Grand Prix|
|Latest entry||2019 British Grand Prix|
|2 (1950, 1951)|
Alfa Romeo had often been a force in Grand Prix racing before World War II. Cars like the P2 and the P3 were winners on a regular basis until the German Mercedes and Auto Union cars came around in 1934; Alfa by this time had withdrawn temporarily as a manufacturer from racing, but continued to give direct support to privateers like Enzo Ferrari and his Scuderia Ferrari team. From 1934 to the start of World War II in 1939, Alfa rarely won and their cars looked rather outdated and badly built compared to the high-tech Silver Arrows of Mercedes. Alfa was able to make the 158 for the 1938 season, although this car was not really competitive against the Silver Arrows; but was to become totally dominant later on; Alfa continued to use this car at Grands Prix in 1946 to 1949. When the new Formula One World Championship had come around, Alfa had absolutely dominated post-WWII racing from 1946 to 1949 – winning every Grand Prix they entered with the exception of 3.
In 1950 Nino Farina won the inaugural World Championship of Drivers in a 158 with supercharger, in 1951 Juan Manuel Fangio won while driving an Alfetta 159 (an evolution of the 158 with a two-stage compressor). The Alfetta's engines were extremely powerful for their capacity: in 1951 the 159 engine was producing around 420 bhp (310 kW) but this was at the price of a fuel consumption of 125 to 175 litres per 100 km (1.5 mpg–U.S. / 3 mpg–imp). In 1952, facing increased competition from their former employee, Ferrari; Alfa Romeo, a state-owned company, decided to withdraw after a refusal of the Italian government to fund the expensive design of a new car to replace their 13-year-old workhorse. Surprisingly, Alfa Romeo involvement in racing was made with a very thin budget, using mostly pre-war technology and material during the two seasons. For instance the team won two championships using only nine pre-war built engine blocks.
During 1977, and after some persuasion by Chiti, Alfa Romeo gave Autodelta permission to start developing a Formula One car on their behalf. Thus named the Alfa Romeo 177, the car made its debut at the 1979 Belgian Grand Prix. The partnership with Brabham had finished before the end of the season, with Bernie Ecclestone's outfit returning to Ford/Cosworth DFV engines. This second Alfa works Formula One project was never truly successful during its existence from the middle of 1979 until the end of 1985. During this period Alfa Romeo achieved two pole positions, Bruno Giacomelli led much of the 1980 United States Grand Prix before retiring with electrical trouble, three 3rd places, two 2nd places and one fastest lap. They also endured tragedy when their driver Patrick Depailler was killed testing for the 1980 German Grand Prix at the Hockenheimring. In 1981 they had the services of Mario Andretti, but continued to be dogged by poor reliability. After a restructuring of Autodelta, the team operations and design of the car were outsourced to Euroracing in 1982, with the works engines still being supplied by Autodelta. The team's best season was 1983 when the team switched to the turbocharged 890T V8 engine and achieved 6th place in the Constructors' Championship, largely thanks to two second-place finishes for Andrea de Cesaris.
While the turbocharged 890T proved competitive in 1983, more powerful and fuel efficient engines from BMW, Ferrari, Renault, TAG-Porsche and Honda, plus the FIA imposed 220-litre fuel limit with no re-fuelling allowed during pit stops during 1984, saw the decline of the Euroracing Alfa Romeo team as a competitive force in Grand Prix racing. The 890T (the only turbo V8 engine used in GP racing at this time) was very thirsty and suffered badly at fast circuits- particularly both of Alfa's home circuits of Imola and Monza. To temporarily rectify this problem, the team had to run with less boost in order to save fuel- which made the engine underpowered, and this proved to be a severe hindrance at fast circuits- the kind of circuits where they almost always had to do that. The engine was developed but the fuel consumption problems were never really rectified. Riccardo Patrese's third-place finish at the 1984 Italian Grand Prix being the last podium finish for the team, with both Patrese and Eddie Cheever often failing to finish races throughout 1984 and 1985 due to running out of fuel- Cheever ran out of fuel 5 laps before the end at Alfa's home Grand Prix at Monza- close to Alfa's headquarters in Milan.
The team's 1985 car, the Alfa Romeo 185T proved to be so uncompetitive that the 1984 car, the 184T was re-called into service mid-season. After being updated to 1985 specifications the car, now dubbed the 184 TB, was actually an improvement over the 1985 car, but results were still not forthcoming. In an interview he gave in 2000, Riccardo Patrese described the 185T as "the worst car I ever drove".
Alfa Romeo pulled out of Formula One as a constructor following the final race of the 1985 season in Australia.
In 1962, Peter de Klerk created a custom-made, single seater racing special built for the South African Formula One Championship. De Klerk's car was powered by an Alfa Romeo Giulietta 1.5-litre straight-4 engines that was also used by LDS, but unlike the LDS cars, de Klerk's own car was christened as the Alfa Romeo "Special". The Special participated in two Grands Prix, retiring at the 1963 South African Grand Prix and finishing 10th at the 1965 South African Grand Prix. It also entered five non-championship Grands Prix, scoring a podium finish at the 1963 Rand Grand Prix.
In the end of 1960s Alfa Romeo was developing a new V8 engine for its racing cars, this engine was tested briefly in Cooper T86C F1-3-68 by Lucien Bianchi. Alfa Romeo briefly returned to Formula One for the 1970 and 1971 seasons with a V8 engine based on their sportscar unit. In 1970 the unit was mainly entrusted to Andrea de Adamich, a long time Alfa driver, in a third works McLaren. The combination often failed to qualify and was uncompetitive when it did run in the races. In 1971 a similar arrangement saw de Adamich run most of the second half of the season in a works March car, with a similar lack of success.
For 1976 Bernie Ecclestone did a deal for the Brabham Formula One team to use Alfa Romeo engines based on their new flat-12 sports car unit, designed by Carlo Chiti. The engines were free and produced a claimed 510 bhp (380 kW) against the 465 bhp (347 kW) of the ubiquitous Cosworth DFV; although the 12-cylinder Alfa engine was heavier and used more oil and water than the 8-cylinder DFV, because of more mechanical processes going on in it. Packaging the engines was difficult – they had to be removed in order to change the spark plugs – and the high fuel consumption engine required no fewer than four separate fuel tanks to contain 47 imperial gallons (214 L; 56 US gal) of fuel. Gordon Murray's increasingly adventurous designs, like the BT46 which won two races in 1978, were partly a response to the challenge of producing a suitably light and aerodynamic chassis around the bulky unit. When aerodynamic ground effect became important in 1978, it was clear that the low, wide engines would interfere with the large venturi tunnels under the car which were needed to create the ground effect. At Murray's instigation Alfa produced a narrower V12 design in only three months for the 1979 season, but it continued to be unreliable and fuel inefficient.
For the 1987 season, Alfa Romeo made a deal to supply engines to Ligier. A Gianni Tonti designed, 850 bhp (634 kW; 862 PS) twin turbo 1500 cc straight-4 named the Alfa Romeo 415T was tested in a Ligier JS29 by René Arnoux. When Fiat (the same company that owned F1 giant Ferrari) took control of Alfa Romeo, the deal was cancelled (ostensibly due to negative remarks by Arnoux about the engine, comparing it to used food) and Ligier had to use Megatron (ex BMW) engines for the entire 1987 season.
Alfa also supplied engines to the small and unsuccessful Italian Osella team from 1983 to 1988. Normally aspirated (1983) and turbo (1984–1987) engines were used. In the beginning, Alfa also offered some technical input to the small Turin team; the 1984 Osella (the model FA 1/F) was based on the 1983 works Alfa Romeo 183T, the first chassis was a lightly reworked 183T. All the following Osella models up to the FA1L in 1988 had their origins in the 183T design.
By 1988, the last turbo season, Alfa was fed up with the negative publicity generated by Enzo Osella's cars, so the Milan-based manufacturer prohibited the further use of its name in connection with the engine. The 1988 engines were simply dubbed "Osella V8". At the end of that season, the relationship finished, ending Alfa Romeo's involvement in Formula One.
In 1985, Alfa Romeo started a V10 Formula One engine project, in anticipation of the upcoming rules forbidding turbo engines. The engine was targeted to be used with Ligier Formula One cars. This was the first modern V10 Formula One engine, followed soon by Honda and Renault engines. The Alfa Romeo V1035 F1 engine was designed by Pino D'Agostino 1986. In its first stage the 3.5 litre engine produced 583 hp (435 kW) and the last version from 1986 could produce 620 bhp (460 kW) at 13300 rpm. After the co-operation with Ligier was cancelled the engine was available to the 164 Pro Car project.
In 1988, Alfa Romeo (Fiat Group) bought Motor Racing Developments Ltd. (otherwise known as the Brabham F1 team) to build a chassis for a new ProCar series. The car developed was V10 powered Alfa Romeo 164 ProCar (Brabham BT57) and was planned to race in a special racing series (as a support event to Formula One Grands Prix).
On 29 November 2017, it was announced that Alfa Romeo would be the title sponsor of the Sauber Formula One team starting from the 2018 season in a "multi-year technical and commercial partnership agreement". On 2 December 2017, a press conference was held at the Alfa Romeo Museum in Arese (Milan), illustrating the terms of the agreement between the FCA Group and the Swiss Sauber team, followed by a presentation ceremony for the livery and the driver line-up consisting of Charles Leclerc and Marcus Ericsson. On 1 February 2019, it was announced that the Sauber team would enter the 2019 season as Alfa Romeo Racing, although the ownership and management structure will remain unchanged.
(Bold indicates championships won)
|1950||Alfa Romeo S.p.A||158||158 1.5 L8 s||P||N/A|| Juan Manuel Fangio
|1951||Alfa Romeo S.p.A||159||158 1.5 L8 s||P||N/A|| Juan Manuel Fangio
Toulo de Graffenried
|1952–1978: Alfa Romeo did not compete as a constructor|
|115-12 3.0 F12
1260 3.0 V12
| Bruno Giacomelli
|1980||Marlboro Team Alfa Romeo||179||1260 3.0 V12||G||22.
| Patrick Depailler
Andrea de Cesaris
|1981||Marlboro Team Alfa Romeo||179B
|1260 3.0 V12||M||22.
| Mario Andretti
|1982||Marlboro Team Alfa Romeo||179D
|1260 3.0 V12||M||22.
| Andrea de Cesaris
|1983||Marlboro Team Alfa Romeo||183T||890T 1.5 V8 t||M||22.
| Andrea de Cesaris
|1984||Benetton Team Alfa Romeo||184T||890T 1.5 V8 t||G||22.
| Riccardo Patrese
|1985||Benetton Team Alfa Romeo||185T
|890T 1.5 V8 t||G||22.
| Riccardo Patrese
|1986–2018: Alfa Romeo did not compete as a constructor|
|2019||Alfa Romeo Racing||C38||Ferrari 064 1.6 V6 t||P||7.
| Kimi Räikkönen
* – Season still in progress.
|Constructor||Season(s)||Total wins||First win||Last win|
|Brabham||1976–1979||2||1978 Swedish Grand Prix||1978 Italian Grand Prix|
|Total||1961–1987||2||1978 Swedish Grand Prix||1978 Italian Grand Prix|
Media related to Alfa Romeo in Formula One at Wikimedia CommonsAlfa Romeo 110A
Alfa Romeo 110A is model of autobus produced from Alfa Romeo between 1934 and 1950.
The bus is produced for the needs of the public transport in Milan, Italy.Alfa Romeo 140A
Alfa Romeo 140A is an Italian bus model produced by Alfa Romeo from 1950 to 1958.
The bus was produced for Azienda Trasporti Milanesi (ATM) in Milan, Italy.Alfa Romeo 140AF
Alfa Romeo 140AF is an Italian trolleybus produced from 1949 to 1960.Alfa Romeo 185T
The Alfa Romeo 185T is a Formula One car that Benetton Team Alfa Romeo used during the 1985 season. The car was entered in 8 races, but without any success and suffering from poor reliability, the team returned to the previous year's car, the 184T, uprated to "184TB" specification. The 1985 season was the last one for Alfa Romeo in Formula One, before their return in 2019. The car was powered by Alfa's own 890T, a 1.5 L turbocharged V8 engine which produced around 780 hp (582 kW) at 10,200 rpm. The team drivers were Riccardo Patrese and Eddie Cheever.
Driven by Patrese, the 185T was involved in arguably the most spectacular accident of the season. On lap 16 of the Monaco Grand Prix, Nelson Piquet in his Brabham-BMW was attempting to pass Patrese along the pit straight. Notoriously hard to pass, Patrese moved across on his former Brabham teammate and put the Brazilian into the guardrail. In a shower of sparks, flames and debris famously captured by the television cameras, both the Brabham and the Alfa were destroyed, though both drivers were able to walk away injury free.
It was at Monaco where Cheever achieved the best qualifying position for the 185T when he started from 4th on the grid with a time only 0.279 seconds slower than pole winner Ayrton Senna in his Lotus-Renault. Cheever had failed to qualify the 184T at Monaco in 1984. After qualifying 4th, Cheever told reporters "We have a new wing here, which is much better than the old one, and the grip is good. Most of all though, we're understanding more and more about the Bosch Motronic, and throttle response is excellent. I think we can run with just about anyone on power as well. I mean, the car is good all round right now - if it can finish". Though it would not take too long for the American to change his tune about the 185T.
In an interview he gave in 2000, Riccardo Patrese described the 185T as "The Worst Car I ever drove".Alfa Romeo 350
Alfa Romeo 350 is a medium Italian truck produced by Alfa Romeo in its Portello Plant. It was made after the 85 and 110 proved to be too heavy and expensive.Alfa Romeo 40A
Alfa Romeo 40A is one of the first buses produced by the Italian company Alfa Romeo.Alfa Romeo 500A
The Alfa Romeo 500A was a bus produced by Alfa Romeo from 1945 to 1948.Alfa Romeo 800AF
Alfa Romeo 800AF is an Italian trolleybus which was produced from 1940 to 1954.Alfa Romeo 80A
Alfa Romeo 80A was a bus produced by Italian manufacturer Alfa Romeo in the late 1920s. Succeeding the Alfa Romeo 40A, it was primarily used in Italy and was less successful in the rest of Europe.Alfa Romeo 85
Alfa Romeo 85 is a truck produced by Alfa Romeo between 1934 and 1939, it was an updated version of licensed Büssing model.Alfa Romeo 900AF
The Alfa Romeo 900AF is Italian trolleybus produced from 1955 to 1957.Alfa Romeo 902A
Alfa Romeo 902A is a bus produced by Alfa Romeo between 1957 and 1959.Alfa Romeo Caimano
The Alfa Romeo Caimano is a concept car designed by Giorgetto Giugiaro of Italdesign and presented at the Turin Motor Show in 1971. The car is exhibited at the Museo Storico Alfa Romeo.Alfa Romeo Delfino
The Delfino is a concept car built by Alfa Romeo in 1983.
The car was a 2-door coupé designed by Bertone, and was based on the Alfa Romeo Alfa 6 platform. It was presented at the Geneva Motor Show in 1983.
The Delfino had a Busso V6 engine that displaced 2,492 cc (152.1 cu in), and developed 158 hp (117.8 kW) of power at 5600 rpm.Alfa Romeo Gloria
The Alfa Romeo Gloria is a concept compact executive car made by the Italian car manufacturer Alfa Romeo. It was first shown to the public at the Geneva Motor Show in March 2013. Unusually, the concept was designed by 20 students of transportation design at the European Design Institute of Turin.Alfa Romeo Grand Prix results
The table below details the European Championship results of Alfa Romeo. The other tables show the results of Alfa Romeo in Formula One.Alfa Romeo Issima
The Alfa Romeo Issima is a concept design car by the Swiss engineering company Sbarro. The Issima was introduced at the 1996 Geneva Motor Show, it is equipped with two 3 litre V6, creating a V12 with 500 bhp (373 kW; 507 PS).Its name derives from the Italian suffix "-issima" ("very very" for feminine names), used on adjectives.Alfa Romeo Mille (bus)
Alfa Romeo Mille is bus produced by Alfa Romeo from 1960 to 1964.Autodelta
Autodelta SpA was the name of Alfa Romeo's competition department. Established in 1961 as Auto-Delta, the company was started by Carlo Chiti and Lodovico Chizzola, former Alfa Romeo and Ferrari engineers. The team was officially made a department of Alfa Romeo on March 5, 1963. The team was originally based in Feletto Umberto, Udine, before moving closer to Alfa Romeo's facilities in Settimo Milanese in 1964 and officially becoming Autodelta SpA. This allowed Autodelta to use the Balocco test track for new racing cars and prototypes.
The purpose of the company was bringing Alfa Romeo back to the top level of motor racing after Alfa Romeo's success in the 1950s. The first car developed together with Alfa Romeo and Autodelta was the Giulia TZ introduced in June 1962. The TZ was updated to TZ2 in 1965, with both cars taking many wins in various championships. Alfa Romeo and Autodelta would later introduce the GTA to even more success.
After success in grand tourer racing, Chiti persuaded Alfa Romeo develop sportscars for the World Sportscar Championship. Alfa Romeo built 2.0, 2.5 and 3.0 litre V8 engines, and later a flat-12 for what would become the Tipo 33 racing car. This racing program led to Alfa Romeo winning the constructors championships in 1975 and 1977.
After winning the sportscar championships, Alfa Romeo turned to supplying engines to the Brabham Formula One team and eventually returned to the sport with a factory team in 1979, run by Autodelta. The team also prepared Alfa Romeo rally cars such as the Alfetta GTVs.
Although the division was eventually phased out, Alfa Romeo used the Autodelta name again for their AutoDelta Squadra Corse team in the European Touring Car Championship run by N.Technology.
|Divisions, joint-ventures and|
|Predecessors and old names|
|Historic and |
|Places and facilities|
Teams and drivers competing in the 2019 Formula One World Championship
|Alfa Romeo S.p.A (1950–1951)|
|Autodelta/Team Alfa Romeo (1979–1985)|
|Alfa Romeo Racing (2019)|
Although World Championship races held in 1952 and 1953 were run to Formula Two regulations, constructors who only participated during this period are included herein to maintain Championship continuity.
Constructors whose only participation in the World Championship was in the Indianapolis 500 races between 1950 and 1960 are not listed.