Alfa Male: Minichamps 1:18 Alfa Romeo GTA 1300 Junior

Alfa Male: Minichamps 1:18 Alfa Romeo GTA 1300 Junior

Minichamps’ model of the 1972 Alfa Romeo GTA 1300 Junior is an outrageous looking thing, much like the real car it’s patterned after. All bulging fenders, riveted-on bodywork, and molto bad attitude, it come out of its box looking… angry. And that would be just about right; these were ripping little cars. 1290cc DOHC inline fours, prepped by Autodelta (Alfa’s in-house racing branch) used SPICA fuel injection, twin spark plugs in each cylinder, an 11:1 compression ratio and a hysterical, 9,000-plus RPM redline to generate close to 170 horsepower – not a bad sum for a car weighing just under a ton.

They were also some of the most beautiful sports coupes ever made, especially when set up for racing. And that’s what PMA/Minichamps has done here; the car’s slammed and flared, wearing a set of gold-toned comp wheels with wide rubber. The mold set, which features opening doors, hood, and trunk, as well as poseable steering and a working suspension, is finished off to a flawless standard, with red paint that’s been polished and accented by the Alfa snake on its hood and tamped-on Autodelta and Alfa insignias. The lensing, in particular, really grabbed us, with superb bezels and clear, perfectly placed elements.

The stripped out interior features twin racing seats up front; these are textured and equipped with harnesses in front of a great dash. No-nonsense door panels are joined by a roll cage and a neat steering wheel – cast in plastic, and decorated to look like metal and wood, it almost pulls off the illusion. More of the same out back; the fuel fill and bare-bones trunk look neat and correct, as does a painted, race-ready underside, cobbled up from just a few castings, all of which carry their weight – and the model’s – well.

Minichamps leans, maybe too heavily, on cast plastic to render the doubled up spark plug wiring atop the little four, but the rest of the detailing, including the header and the fuel injection unit (replete with its intake, visible just behind the metal-screened grille) is very nicely done.

It may have come out of the box looking angry, but it sure got us smiling. These are still on the market – and they’re highly recommended.

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