Our Cars: Rob Sass’ 1979 Alfa Romeo Spider provides lots of bang for the buck

1979 Alfa Romeo Spider

Rob Sass, Vice President of Content at Hagerty, has been infatuated with cars since he was a kid, religiously poring over issue after issue of Road & Track and dreaming of the day he would actually own an automobile of his own. That was years – and dozens of cars – ago. His stable of classics has included several Triumphs TR6s, a 1972 Porsche 911S, a 1963 Buick Riviera and a 1967 Maserati Mistral. After years as a lawyer who also wrote about cars, Sass eventually gave up his “day job” to become a full-time auto journalist. He has written for the Chicago Tribune, Business Week, AutoWeek, the New York Times and Sports Car Market, and he is the author of a book on affordable car collecting, “Ran When Parked.”

Employee: Rob Sass

Title: Vice President of Content

Years at Hagerty: 4

Car(s): 1979 Alfa Romeo Spider

Why an Alfa Romeo Spider? Summers in Traverse City (Mich.) are beautiful but short. I needed an inexpensive classic sports car, and in my opinion Alfa Spiders are among the best of the lot. For generally less than seven grand, you get Pininfarina styling, a twin-cam fuel injected four that makes decent power and great noise, a five-speed gearbox and one of the best convertible top designs of all time.

Repairs and Modifications: Just bought a new convertible top.

Hobby activities (clubs, events, etc.): I’m a member of the Jensen Owners Club and the Porsche Club of America.

Favorite Drive: San Jose, Calif., to Pebble Beach via Santa Cruz.

Any interesting stories? I got pulled over in the Alfa driving from St. Louis to Traverse City. When I was asked how fast I thought I was going, I could truthfully answer that I had no idea – the speedometer stopped working 100 miles into the drive. Fortunately, the officer took that at face value and gave me a warning. Immediately after, I downloaded a GPS speedometer app on my smart phone.

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