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1932 Alfa Romeo Tipo B P3

1932 Alfa Romeo Tipo B P3

1932 Alfa Romeo Tipo B P3

With an absence of riding mechanics from grand prix regulations, Alfa Romeo commissioned Vittorio Jano to design the Tipo A, their first single seat race car (Monoposto). Jano’s first design, the Tipo A, had dual inline-6 engines having two gearboxes & two propeller shafts. Jano abandoned this philosophy with the Tipo B which used a more conservative single-engine drive line.

As raced from 1932 till 1933, the P3 had a huge advantage thanks to its exceptional power to weight ratio. It also had a unique driveshaft system that sent power to each rear wheel individually. This split the torque evenly between two lightweight bevel boxes. Having both shafts running alongside the seat allowed the driver’s seating position to sit lower.

In 1934 the P3 was transformed to accommodate new Grand Prix rules. The regulations stated that the body must be at least 33.5 inches wide. The revised 1934 P3 had a larger chassis with larger bodywork that covered the blowers and front framerails. At this time, many of the original P3’s had been sold to private teams after Alfa Romeo retired from racing in 1933. Alfa sold some of the cars with a 2.9 litre engine that yielded around 220-260HP which was more competitive against the W25 and Auto Union Type C. Scuderia Ferrari took many of these cars and managed a private team with Tazio Nuvolari as their number one driver.

From 1923 to 35 the P3 racked up a number of Grand Prix victories. The most notable victory was the German GP race of 1935 in which Tazio Nuvolari, racing for team Ferrari, beat the combined efforts of Mercedes & Auto Union. This race is considered one of Nuvolari’s greatest victories as the P3 was much older and underpowered compared to the competition.

Major Private & Works P3 Victories:
Jun05/32 Italian GP-Monza, Tazio Nuvolari
Jul03/32 French GP-Reims, Tazio Nuvolari
Jul17/32 German GP-Nurburgring, Rudolf Caracciola
Jul31/32 Coppa Ciano-Montenero, Tazio Nuvolari
Aug14 Coppa Acerbo-Perscara, Tazio Nuvolari
Sep11/32 Monza GP-Monza, Rudolf Caracciola
Aug13/33 Coppa Acerbo-Perscara, Luigi Fagioli
Aug20/33 Comminges GP-St. Gaudens, Luigi Fagioli
Aug27/33 Marseille GP-Miramas, Louis Chiron
Sep10/33 Italian GP-Monza, Luigi Fagioli
Sep24/33 Spanish GP-Lasarte, Louis Chiron
Apr02/34 Monaco GP-Monte Carlo, Guy Moll
May06/34 Tripoli GP-Mellaha, Achille Varzi
May20/34 Targa Florio-Madonie, Achille Varzi
May27/34 Avusrennen-Avus, Guy Moll
Jun03 Montreux GP-Montreux, Carlo Felice Trossi
Jul01 French GP-Montlhery, Louis Chiron
Jul08/34 Marne GP-Reims, Louis Chiron
Jul15/34 Vichy GP-Vichy, Carlo Felice Trossi
Jul22/34 Coppa Ciano-Montenero, Achille Varzi
Apr28/35 Targa Florio Madonie, Antonio Brivio
Jun30/35 Lorraine GP-Nancy, Louis Chiron
Jul14/35 Belgian GP-Spa, Rudolf Caracciola
Jul28/35 German GP-Nurburgring, Tazio Nuvolari
Oct05/35 Donington GP-Donington Park, Richard Shuttleworth

In Detail

submitted by Richard Owen
engine Water Cooled, Inline-8
position Front Longitudinal
aspiration Twin Supercharged
valvetrain DOHC 2 Valves / Cyl
displacement 2650 cc / 161.7 in³
bore 65 mm / 2.56 in
stroke 100 mm / 3.94 in
power 141.7 kw / 190.0 bhp @ 5400 rpm
specific output 71.7 bhp per litre
bhp/weight 246.11 bhp per tonne
body / frame Aluminum
driven wheels RWD
front tires 28×5.50
rear tires 28×5.50
front brakes Mechanical Drums
rear brakes Mechanical Drums
f suspension Non Independant, w/Semi-Elliptic Springs & Friction Dampers
r suspension Non Independant, w/Semi-Elliptic Springs & Friction Dampers
curb weight 772 kg / 1702 lbs
wheelbase 2642 mm / 104.0 in
front track 1346 mm / 53.0 in
rear track 1346 mm / 53.0 in
transmission 3-Speed Manual
top speed ~225.3 kph / 140.0 mph