The immediately pre-WW2 era brought out some beautiful cars, with production numbers so low, they could not be built today. Take the Alfa Romeo 8C 2900B Lungo for example. The factory produced only around 10 of them between 1937 and 1939, and they were extremely high priced.
The 8C series began in 1931 and were designed by Vittoria Jano (who went on to design the post-war F1 Lancias of 1955). The first of the series had a 2.3 liter engine and they were straight eight, twin-supercharged engines. These cars were highly competitive in their day, and the capacity was progressively increased until by 1936 it was up to 2.9 liters.
Alfa Romeo 8C 2900B Lungo
Six of these road racers, known as 8C 2900A, were constructed with three entered in the 1936 Mille Miglia. The new cars were immediately successful and held the first three places at the finish. In 1937, the 8C won again.
With the winning cars as a base, 10 road going customer versions were built. Called the 8C 2900B, the road car featured a de-tuned engine, but other than that was very similar to the racer.
Two versions were available, the 2800 mm short wheelbase (Corto) and 3000 mm long wheelbase (Lungo). Most of these were sent to the body builders ‘Touring’ to be fitted with Berlinetta, Spyder and Roadster bodies. Being very similar to the competition 8C 2900A, it was no surprise the 8C 2900B’s were also raced. After the two 8C 2900A victories in 1936 and 1937, another two victories were scored by the 8C 2900B in 1938 and 1947.