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Delta Alfa Romeo Trofeo Giulietta commemorative

This pen is red. Really red. That's what attracted me to it, despite my general lack of interest in modern cartridge-fill pens (particularly those at this pen's list price). I was prepared for a less-than-stellar writing experience, but I instead found myself pleasantly surprised at how reliably this pen feeds ink and how smoothly it glides across the paper. All in all, not a bad purchase, particularly at the show price I was able to get on it.

Delta is an Italian firm, and relatively new in the pen business (they set up shop in 1982), but they have in recent years been very active in promoting high-end writing instruments. In particular, Delta have lent enthusiastic support to the pen show circuit, with sponsorships and free giveaways. They've offered more than their share of the ubiquitous Limited Editions, most of which seem to look distressingly alike to me; the Alfa pen is a fortunate exception. It is a girthy pen, and looks big, but at 5-1/2"/135mm capped, it's only a bit longer than the current norm.

The pen commemorates the Alfa Romeo Giulietta, a line of small sports cars made by the famous Italian firm during the 1950s. These cars were eligible to participate in a series of races known as the Trofeo Giulietta; hence, the "checkered flag" motif on the handsome and large sterling silver barrel band, the clip shaped like a Giulietta's door handle, and the Alfa-Romeo badge mounted on top of the pen. The Alfa motif is continued on the antiqued sterling cap band that features the car's distinctive grillework.

To harmonize with the silver trim, and to fit in with the current "hide the gold" fashion trend, the 18k medium point has been plated with rhodium.

As I mentioned, this pen is a cartridge/converter filler, but the converter actually screws tightly into the section (rather than simply being press-fitted as are most of this type). Perhaps this makes a difference in performance, since I've never had any problems with ink feed on this pen. It is a comfortable size and weight for me, and the plastic is tough enough to allow it to survive outside its presentation box. This pen is still in production, and was recently released in black and bright yellow versions, with matching ballpoints and rollerballs.

The Verdict

Nice size and weight, writes smoothly and feeds reliably. A good workaday pen that, with its vivid color and flashy sterling trim, simultaneously appeals to the showoff in all of us. Definitely not a sissy-pants sort of LE.

Maker Delta
Origin Italy
Production Current (from 2001)
Type Cartridge/converter fill
Point 18k M rhodium plate
Construction Red plastic (cast?), sterling silver trim, screw-on cap