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

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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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