Alfa Romeo T33/3 #38 – TSM

1970 Alfa Romeo T33/3
Pilots: C. Facetti, T. Zeccoli
Team: Autodelta SpA
Race: DNF (class P 3000) at Le Mans in 1970
TSM - 124311 (resin)

Published 05/17/17

Alfa Romeo had returned to sports car racing in 1967 with the purpose-built Tipo 33 coupe. Powered by a two liter V8, Autodelta (the competition arm of Alfa Romeo) developed the car originally as a class winner. But a rule change that came into effect at the start of 1968 made overall victories definitively possible. With the new rules for 1969, the engine was expanded to 2998 cm³ with 4 valves per cylinder and a Lucas fuel injection system, producing 420 hp. But with the bigger and more powerful engine the current space frame chassis became an issue, so a brand new, full length aluminum monocoque was developed. And with the new engine and new chassis, the T33/3 was born.

T33/3 #38
Livery issues aside, a VERY nice model.

Autodelta had in total four T33/3 works cars enrolled in Le Mans in 1970, but all retired. The T33/3 #38 (chassis #75080-009) was out of the race in the 5th hour because of an accident. This is my third soft shell 1:43 and first TSM, and though the detail level is VERY good, brilliant in fact, I’m a bit disappointed. I was expecting something like my last Spark

T33/3 #38
On #38 that roll bar should have been GREEN.

On all the pictures that I’ve found of the car in the race, those thin stripes on the front around the number plate were green and not red/orange. Same thing for the roll bar behind the cockpit. I did find ONE photo of the car where the stripes were orange (though the roll bar was green). However, this particular photo of T33/3 #38 was not during the race. Also, the rear wheels should be more of a golden color and not silver. This is my first TSM, and until now I had it in high regards. But this SNAFU let me feeling a tad let down. A shame, because detail level is outstanding.

T33/3 #38
Flat tires – leave the car long enough on the plinth and that’s what you get.

And one thing I have to show. The display case and plinth are top-notch, just as good as the ones that came with my Sparks. BUT, look at the tires: they’re flat on the bottom. Even after I removed the car, they were still flat. Even worse, there was a kind of oily liquid beneath the rubber, so the rubber was interacting with the plinth’s material. I always feared leaving cars too long on the plinth exactly because of this. So if you have models in this situation I can’t recommend strongly enough for you to check your tires.

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