Italian Duce Benito Mussolini's Alfa Romeo Sold at French Auction


Italian Duce Benito Mussolini's official car, an Alfa Romeo convertible, has fetched €180,000 ($240,000) at auction in France, the auctioneer said.

An unnamed Russian museum bought the car, which needs complete restoration, at a sale in Caen-Carpiquet in northwestern France. Originally fitted with a silver dashboard and handles, the car was custom-built in 1937 for Italian King Victor Emmanuel III before becoming Mussolini's official car, according to expert Xavier Aiolfi.

The car, an Alfa Romeo 6C 2300B, carried Adolf Hitler during the 1938 official trip to Italy.

The car, an Alfa Romeo 6C 2300B, carried Adolf Hitler during the 1938 official trip to Italy. - See more at: car, an Alfa Romeo 6C 2300B, carried Adolf Hitler during the 1938 official trip to Italy. It was the car that Mussolini used when he made his official trips through Italy. It was also this car that carried him to the meeting of the 1943 Grand Fascist Council that resulted in his dismissal.

In 1937, the Italian government placed an order with the prestigious firm, Alfa Romeo, for seven parades cars. These were to be designed in a style appropriate for carrying Italy’s highest figures during official events.

All the frames of the frames were commissioned on behalf of the Ministry of Interior and received the license plate “PS” indicating the “Special Police.” Destined to be exceptional automobiles, Alfa sent the frames to the most prestigious coach builder of the time: Castagna of Milan.

One of the seven cars became the “Admiral” of the fleet.

The car was intended for the King of Italy. Ercole Castagna also wanted to emphasize the importance of the car by putting his full name on the tags affixed to the car.

The car, however, was used as the only official car of the highest figure of state and head of the government, Benito Mussolini.

The Alfa Romeo was officially sold by the Ministry of Interior October 10, 1945, to a local Rome mechanic. The new owner sold it to the Count Alessandro Dudan, an Italian senator.

Dudan immediately understood the historical significance of the vehicle. He took the precaution to hide it in a secret place because many American occupation troops were looking for significant war trophies. In fact, once they  learned that the former senator had acquired the “Mussolini car,”  they interrogated him and searched his home—but with no success.

It was at this time of intense scrutiny that Dudan took the extra precaution of walling up the car in one of his garages. Eventually, the searching ended. Fifteen years had passed.

After Dudan’s death, his son retrieved the vehicle from its hiding place. He did not mention the car to anyone, however.

Gradually, the car succumbed the ravages of times and fell into a state of disrepair. It took many years before a family friend convinced Dudan’s son to sell the vehicle in order for it to be saved for the ages.


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