Kurbads transports legendary Alfa Romeo Alfetta Gtv6 2.5

Kurbads in cooperation with Normunds Avotiņš continues series of articles on exclusive sports cars collection.


The client chose the vehicle transported by Kurbads rather accidentally: “I dreamt of Alfa Romeo for a very long time”. Historically, Alfa has stood out for its design, and this model – GTV6, particularly, with its V6 engine. Thus, choice of the particular car was related to car history and its minimalistic design. The car was bought in Finland, and, with the help of Kurbads, transported to Riga.

Alfa Romeo Alfetta GTV6 2.5 – a Giugiaro masterpiece with a legendary engine.

Four European champion titles, a role in a James Bond movie and a lousy gearbox – can you think of a crazier CV?

Alfa Romeo cars have always made the hearts of enthusiasts beat faster. Reasons may be various – from exciting design to nervous shivering, when hearing noises pointing at damages in mechanisms, where the genius of Italian engineer meets divine ignorance of repairs.



The Alfa Romeo Alfetta GT and GTV became, to a certain extent, a transitional period between the plump “alfas” of the 60s still living in post-war trends, and the switch-over to the rational front wheel drive platforms of the 90s. The car’s chassis is, so to speak, a living legend – rear wheel driven, with gearbox installed in the back (transaxle principle) and rear brake discs inside or next to the gearbox to reduce the unsuspended weight. The exotic, complicated construction was focused on one goal – balance and controllability.


Alfetta GT design, created by ItalDesign, was a real revolution within the context of the 70s, for example, compared to the model it was based on. Alfetta was technically constructed on an ordinary 1972 Alfetta sedan, but those who did not know it would never suspect these “alfas” of having something in common. The Alfetta body type – fastback coupe – was not the classic shape of a sports car from the 70s, mainly because it had a comfortable backseat. Moreover, there were even opening side windows at the back, actually, the third closest to the middle roof stand. One could almost imagine that Alfetta was ahead of the time by becoming an early sports hatchback with foldable backseats and similar features. However, it takes just opening of the Alfetta’s boot lid to find that this is not the case. Between the unusually spacious boot and the interior, fuel tank rises like a wall, whereas the very originally arranged pneumatic lid lift, situated in the middle, prevents removal of the boot lid. Despite its minor oddities, the Alfetta was considered a quite comfortable car.

alfa romeo alfetta  kurbads



If the Alfetta GT had stuck to four-cylinder engines, this Alfa might have gone down in history as a cute and, quoting CAR magazine, “adequate” sports car. However, in 1980, along with a restyling, the Alfetta GT was equipped with a 2.5-litre V6 engine from the Alfa Romeo 6 and became the “Alfetta GTV6 2.5”, which is the car in the pictures. Despite the fact that the engine was not supposed to share the front part of the car with the gearbox, it hardly had enough space under the hood, because Alfetta was a relatively small car (4.26 x 1.65 x 1.33 metres). Since there was not enough space, the GTV6 got its own “trademark” – a hood with a hump and a plastic lid right above the injector housing, since the capricious carburettors were replaced with Bosch L-Jetronic injection system in GTV6. It did not make the car more economical or reliable, though. In one of the Gran Turismo series, Jeremy Clarkson explains that the plastic lid is necessary for the GTV6 as a cheaply-replaceable part, for when the intake housing hits the hood due to backfiring. This legend may have resulted from imagination, just like the method of keeping the clutch pressed by using a broomstick to avoid the clutch disc fusing to the flywheel. However, like the majority of Italian cars, the GTV6 definitely had its own sins, too. It is widely known for clumsy gear switching, as evidenced in a striking exchange from the same TV show:


– What was your experience with the second gear?


– None. I did not find it.


However, this did not prevent the GTV6 from becoming a cult classic. The car became a coupe of world-famous celebrities in 1983, when another movie about the adventures of secret agent 007 – “Octopussy” – came out. Although the GTV6 was not really the service car of Mr. Bond, the two-minute car chase scene with Roger Moore sitting at the wheel of a stolen Alfa did a better job than every commercial in the previous ten years combined. Suddenly, everybody wanted a GTV.



The unusual coupe boasts an impressive motor sports career. The GTV6 won the title of the European motor racing champion ETCC four times in a row (1982–1985), but Yves Loubet triumphed with this car four times in a row in Tour de Corse, Group A. Thanks to motor sports, to be more exact, to homologation requirements for the South African market, a small number of GTV6 models were even manufactured with a more voluminous 3 litre engine and a special hood with air intake.



The model transported by the vehicle transportation company Kurbads belongs to the post-facelift generation. A cluster consisting of three “clocks” and the “trinity” of liquids in the centre of the panel does not so much as suggest that the GTV6 has ever looked differently. In fact, the Alfetta GT and GTV have had at least three different front panel configurations. The most bizarre was probably the one with a separated tachometer behind the wheel and the remaining meters in a separate block in the middle. The light “leather” interior causes a misleading impression of luxury, while, suprisingly, the textile interior was considered to be more sophisticated. Eventually, GTV6 comes from the era when plastic furniture started to gradually replace chromium-plated decorations. A driver’s seat height adjustment using a telescopic pull-out lever is a touching ergonomic artefact of Italian cars.

Alfa Romeo Kurbads



The real reason why people desire the Alfa Romeo Alfetta GTV6 2.5 is the engine. One hundred-sixty horsepower gave the car charming dynamics (it stormed from 0 to 100 km/h in 8.8 s, and Vmax reached 212 km/h) and fantastic sound. Starting the car on cold mornings is something like a religious ritual to this day since, despite the German injector, the early models were equipped with a pull-out choke. The stiff gearbox in the rear made funny noises and filled the body with strange vibration. However, that all vanished as soon as one was lucky enough to tame the clutch, switch into first gear and cross the starting line. If there was a “Busso V6” (from the legendary engineer of Alfa and Ferrari, author of the 60-degree block V6 motor Giuseppe Busso), then nothing else mattered anymore.

Kurbads on Fiat 124 Sport Coupe

In cooperation with automotive journalist Normunds Avotiņš, car transport and logistics company “Kurbads”launches a new series of articles on exclusive, collection and sports cars. We are pleased to  present an article on the Fiat 124 Sport Coupe.

What would a “zhiguli” coupe have looked like? Car transport and logistics company “Kurbads” had the chance to transport this classic -the sports car of the head of the 70’s family – Fiat 124 Sport Coupe.

The car, dubbed“the affordable beauty” is known as one of the best Italian Gran Tourismo’s of the 1970s – Fiat 124 Sport Coupe.



The 1974 two-door car belongs to the third and last of this model generation, as Fiat stopped producing the  Sport Coupe only a year after the dark red vehicle had rolled off  the conveyor in Turin. It was only in 1973 that the car acquired its distinctive front design with the one-piece radiator grille frame, when it parted from its connected double lamps and rear optics of  Lamborghini Jarama. Equipped with a 1.6 or, as in this case, a 1.8 liter four-cylinder engine, the elegant car is capable of developing speeds up to 185 km / h. The engines were mostly borrowed from Fiat’s mid-size sedan 132, which had similar separate front double headlamps, and which was manufactured until the early 1980s. Noteworthy are this copy’s Abarth discs, both of which are more common on the original 124 Spider.



As the name of the model suggests, a sports car with a classic three-dimensional body, four seats and a relatively large boot was created on the basis of the Fiat 124 sedan. As is known, it was not only the winner of the 1967 European Car of the Year, but also a “donor” for the first model produced by the Tolyatti factory in the former USSR, VAZ-2101. Placing pictures of both cars next to each other makes it difficult to imagine them as relatives, however, if one pays attention to details such as the speedometer, the similarities become apparent.



Although car historians prefer the 60’s Sport Coupe, this copy deserves no less respect. Its interior changed very little during modernization. In 1972, it  was perhaps considered an old-fashioned flaw to have the air temperature controls next to the parking brake, but from today’s point of view, this is actually a bonus, as it depicts a longer period in the model’s history. So much worth can already be found in only a row of motorsport-style accessories in the middle of the panel and seat upholstery in “dot”, found in different shades. The Fiat 124 Sport Coupe was considered a safe car and had a height-adjustable steering wheel.



The Sport Coupe’s biography also includes guest performances in the United States, where imports from Fiat earned respect for its dual nature: it was neat, it was fun to ride and at the same time it was quite affordable. However, one should  not rush to overseas historic car dealerships hoping to find a cheaper copy than this. Due to safety and emission limits, the car was arguably distorted by a change in design. However, many nice Sport Coupe copies circulate in the American Italian clubs in their original version – and at truly attractive prices. Fiat 124 Sport Coupe is especially popular for its driving,  as it is light and equipped with disc brakes for all four wheels, which was by no means  common in the 1970s.



There is no denying that the design of the first two-generation Fiat 124 Sport Coupe makes the heart beat faster. However, let’s keep in mind that the car was originally intended as a sports car that is available to a relatively wide range of buyers. In the history of automobiles there are many cases where a few decades later a “people’s car” moves away from original concepts with the speed of light and sky-high prices. The Fiat 124 Sport Coupe is a pleasant exception because it is still relatively cheap and relatively easy to maintain  if you know someone who can be trusted with a Weber carburetor. This Fiat is a good start to the exciting world of historic cars.

Car market overview in Latvia, Europe and the world in 2020

The past year has been full of change and challenges. Not only Latvia, but the whole world was affected by the COVID-19 pandemic wave. As a result, every industry suffered, including the car market. From March, when most European car factories closed, with a sudden increase in new cars and a shortage of warehouses.

Fall in all Baltic countries

Undeniably, a drop in new car registrations was expected. According to the data of the Road Traffic Safety Directorate (CSDD), in 2020, 13720 cars were registered in Latvia. This is 26% less than last year – in 2019, 18,529 units were registered.

The annual leader Volkswagen is surpassed by Toyota and Škoda. Namely, the Toyota car brand ranks in the honorable first place with 2065 first registration cars. Škoda takes the respectable second place, with sales increasing by 8% or 1949 units. In turn, the sales volume of Volkswagen car brands decreased by 1301 units, this year 1758 units were registered.

Toms Hartmanis, the head of the logistics department of the car transport and logistics company Kurbads, comments on the past year: “Last year was full of challenges in the car market.

As a result of the first wave of the pandemic, car production was stopped in most parts of the world, and the plans for 2020 were far from being achieved. With the resumption of production, the industry faced the following challenges: a shortage of parts, as no one could have foreseen the shortage so large that they would be ready to resume operating 100% after the cataclysm. The industry recovered to reasonable levels only in the last quarter of the year. The car market, although insufficient, adapted quickly, and strong growth was observed in the used car segment, which partially offset the already unattainable volumes in the car market. This can also be seen in the market proportions – with the exception of the private sector alone, there is even growth, but the overall market is in deep decline. ”

The most popular car model leaders are the Toyota RAV4 (688 units), and right there next to it, Toyota Corolla with 684 new cars. Škoda Octavia is a little bit farther behind (608 units). Statistical data shows that the most popular mini class vehicle in Latvia is VW Golf, the middle class is dominated by this year’s most popular models – Toyota Corolla and Škoda Octavia.

The most dynamic purchase of new cars last year was observed in July, 1507 units. However, compared to July 2019, the activity is lower by 13%. The COVID-19 pandemic hit Latvia in full in March and April, when the number of registered new passenger cars also decreased by up to 58% compared to 2019. The electric car market is celebrating its victory, with a 278% increase in 2020. That is, 323 new units, which is a major breakthrough compared to 90 units in 2019.

Neither in Lithuania nor in Estonia is the overall picture of new car registrations brighter. However, in our neighbouring countries there isn’t such a big drop as in Latvia. In Lithuania, new car registrations have fallen by 13%, to 5,968 units. Unfortunately, the new car market in Estonia has been hit hardest by the COVID-19 pandemic crisis. Namely, the decrease is 29%, that is, 7839 units.

A massive drop in Europe; undeniably dominated by Volkswagen

Both the industry and the car market were severely affected by the constraints of the COVID-19 pandemic. Especially in March and April, when the factories closed and there was an absolute blocking of work. Dealers reacted quickly and suppressed new order quantities by deciding to sell the cars in stock. Undoubtedly, the car sales market also reached the next level, had to adapt to the conditions and start using e-commerce opportunities. As they could not go to the showrooms to see the car or enjoy the test drives, the dealers had to face a restructuring of their work.

New car registrations in the EU fell by 24.3%, followed by the hardest decrease in Spain (down -32.3%), followed closely by Italy (down -27.9%) and France (down 25.5%). In total, new car registrations decreased by 3.5 million compared to 2019.

The automotive sector is still dominated by the Volkswagen Group, which, despite the circumstances, managed to increase its market share to 25.4% (24.3% in 2019). Although Volkswagen’s new car registrations in particular fell by 24.5% (1.34 million units). Other manufacturers in the VW Group are also experiencing a significant reduction – Škoda – a decrease of – 15.7%, Audi – 19.2%, Porsche – 7.6%.

The most popular car brands in Europe in 2020 are undoubtedly Volkswagen, Renault and Peugeot. Toyota, which is so popular in Latvia, ranks only in seventh place.

In general, the situation is tense, both globally and in Europe

Overall, car sales worldwide have fallen by 15%. The most critical changes are, of course, in Europe (-24.3%), as well as in Brazil (-26.7%), India (-17.7%) and the United States (14.8%). On the other hand, China (-6.1%) and Russia (-9.1%) have been more successful during this time.

Although China was the first country to be affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, it recovered very successfully. Not only in the automotive industry, but in all industries in general. Car sales decreased by 1.25 million, 19,790,000 units were sold (201,045,000 units in 2019).

Source of information: ACEA (European Automobile Manufacturers Association), Road Safety Directorate and VDA data.


Blind areas are a major cause of road accidents involving lorries

Blind spots are places where the truck driver cannot see other vehicles. Although truck drivers are higher than the ground compared to car drivers, the field of vision is blocked in several areas.

Trucks have three main blind zones:

  • Side blind zones – due to the huge size and height of the car transporter trailers, a completely opaque blind zone is formed when turning. The blind zone on the right side is considered to be much more dangerous compared to the blind zone on the left side.
  • Front blind spot – Most accidents in this area occur when a car makes a sharp maneuver or starts moving late in front of the truck. The car literally disappears from the truck driver’s sight by hiding behind the dashboard.
  • Rear blind spot – car drivers should primarily take into account the fact that truck drivers do not have rear view mirrors. Namely, drivers must rely on the side mirrors to check the surrounding traffic.

Tips for truck drivers to avoid blind spot accidents:

  • Optimal adjustment of mirrors and seat. Especially if cars are changed or several drivers drive the same car. Most cars today are equipped with a seat position function.
  • “Gymnastics” at the wheel. Modification of the neck and body by intensifying observation of the surroundings, thus reducing the blind zone.
  • Addition of additional special mirror elements without obscuring the basic view.
  • Position navigation, toll boxes and telephone so that the view is not obscured.
  • Do not start moving in winter until the windows have completely thawed or cleaned. Including windscreen, the uncleaned right side. Don’t start moving until the extra camera lenses are clear.

France, on the other hand, wants to pay more attention to the accidents caused by truck blind spots. Therefore, from January 1st 2021, all heavy weight car transport (both lorries and passenger vehicles) weighing more than 3.5 tonnes must be equipped with yellow signs informing other road users of the blind spots for their vehicle. This way the French government will seek to reduce the number of road accidents.


Kurbads has the safest autopark – fifth year in a row!

For the fifth year in a row, we are happy to receive the gold category award “The safest company fleet”. The competition is organized by the insurance company “Balta” and the Ministry of Transport.

The aim of the competition is consistent – to stimulate the understanding of Latvian companies, state institutions and local governments and the need for a safe company fleet, as well as to promote good practice in their management.

This year, unlike before, special attention was paid to solutions of the crisis and examples of good practice for companies that did not put fleet safety issues in the background even in a pandemic. Car transport and logistics company Kurbads reached the top of the pedestal in the category – international freight.

“This year was a challenge for all the department directors. The most important thing was to keep and secure as many employees as possible. With the workload returning to pre-covid levels, new drivers had to be trained as quickly as possible. To prepare them qualitatively so that the quality of the company’s service and safety on the roads do not suffer, ”comments the service manager Ivars Čiblis this year.

There were four touchstones for determining the winners of the competition in the category of international freight carriers: fleet and its characteristic parameters, technical support; the company’s policy and action regarding accidents, their supervision and management; the company and the involvement of its management in risk management; human resources (drivers, their selection, training, responsibility and control).

In the group of international cargo carriers, both Kurbads and Samskip Riga won the Gold category. “Sadales tīkls”, “Delta LV” won in the group of local hauliers and special purpose car fleets. In the competition of the lowest risk, state and municipal car fleets, “Rīgas siltums”, “Latvijas autoceļu rūpētājs”, “Latvenergo” concern and “Latvijas valsts meži” won.



Kurbads supports the participation of Lithuanian rally-raid driver Vaidotas Žala in the Dakar rally

Rally and Kurbads go hand in hand. The most powerful and difficult rally raid challenge in the world is the Dakar Rally. After four decades in Africa’s and South-America’s deserts, Dacar’s hometown is now Saudi Arabia. With a successful debut in 2020, rocks, riverbeds, many dunes and a drought await the participants of the Dakar Rally this year, too.

Our neighbor from Lithuania – Vaidotas Žala has chosen the car transport and logistics company Kurbads as the carrier for his car AGRORODEO (Baby). “For the second year in a row, we are entrusting the transportation of “Baby” to “Kurbads”, the largest car carrier in Latvia. We are glad that we were able to find common language and establish cooperation. It is no secret that my steersman in the classic Rally, Andris Mālnieks, is Latvian, so that’s how we found interesting and useful contacts in Latvia. ”

This will be the sixth Dakar Rally for Vaidotas Žala. Last year, Vaidotas and his steersman Saulius Jurgelen won the first stage of the Dakar Rally in the light vehicles class. Impressive results and pinnacles await us, as Vaidotas is only 33 years old.

We are happy to cooperate and help out, wishing the best of luck!

Fiat Abarth 595 SS – the iconic Italian charm

Sophisticated design and the ability to be relevant through time is the secret of Fiat’s success and eternal youth. Every day, the Kurbads logistics center is delighted by new, exclusive and admirable vehicles. When we received photos from the driver-forwarder Viesturs, who had accumulated a Fiat Abarth 595 SS, we were convinced right away – we had to take a shot. The red color of the car complements its hot-blooded charm and gives an admiration worthy look. The Fiat Abarth 595 SS was created based on its predecessor, the Fiat 500. The special model is a masterpiece by Carlo Abarth, a car designer.

Behind the speed, performance and accuracy of a scorpion is Carlo Abarth, a personality who forever changed and influenced the work of Fiat. Carlo’s trademark and symbol was a scorpion – determined, strong and passionate. Scorpio was not chosen at random, it is the astrological sign of the designer himself. Carlo’s masterpieces attracted car manufacturers such as Alfa Romeo, Maserati and Ferrari. Carl’s first triumph was the Fiat Abarth 750 GT, using the Fiat 600 as a base. The Fiat Abarth 750 GT set several speed and endurance records. In turn, the second success was the Fiat Abarth 595. The car broke six international speed records and scored around 900 wins.

The secret of the Fiat Abarth 595 SS is the improvements made by Carlo. A special cylinder casting technique was used, more powerful valve springs were installed together with the camshaft, which allowed to increase the engine speed and, consequently, power. Even the lubrication system has been modified. These mechanical improvements transformed the small Fiat 500 and allowed an increase in power from 22 to 34 horsepower. The conversion halved the acceleration time of the standard car and endowed the Fiat Abarth 595 SS with a top speed of 130 km/h.

Undoubtedly, a version of the Fiat Abarth 595 has also been released, which is not supplemented with so many extras, therefore its price is on average 55,000 EUR. The price of the modified model Fiat Abarth 595 SS starts from 70,000 EUR.

Kurbads chooses Volkswagen ID.3 1ST

We’re keeping up with the times and choosing the electric car Volkswagen ID.3. We also try to introduce more environmentally friendly habits into our daily lives – we sort waste, choose recycled materials and now we also have an electric car. The decision to get an electric car was certain.

The author and implementer of the car design idea is our reliable artist Alfreds Paulauskas. Thanks to Alfred, we will drive through the streets of Riga environmentally friendly and with chic.
“People don’t suspect that the body of the car is not flat at all, it is a sphere rather than a cube, and you’d have to think hard about getting each design element exactly where it should be and to get the result to look the same in life, as in the layout. This time, worried about the deadlines, I asked for help from two experienced gluers, for whom it is as easy a thing to pull the car into the adhesive film, as to put on pants in the morning. So all I had to do was join in, lead the way and enjoy the process of gluing each part and my idea came to life step by step exactly as I had intended, ”says Alfreds about the car gluing process.

Toms Hartmanis, the head of Kurbads logistics department and a member of the board, had gone to the event to receive the car at Volkswagen Latvia. The emotions after removing the car cover were sincere. The car itself, Volkswagen ID.3, had been in Kurbads’ logistics center for a couple of weeks, but the custom Alfred’s design had only been seen by Volkswagen employees.

We’re excited about the new and captivating Kurbads car!
Let’s roll!

Volkswagen ID.3 1ST arrives in Latvia

We’re happy to announce that we, car transport company Kurbads, have the opportunity to deliver to Latvia the newest and very first Volkswagen ID.3 1ST cars – environmentally friendly, well thought out and convenient to use.
ID.3 1ST is equipped with a medium-sized battery, its mileage – up to 420 km.

As time goes on, standard models will have a choice of three battery performance versions – small, medium and large. With a small battery (45 kWh) it will be possible to drive up to 330 km, but with a large battery (77 kWh) the distance will be up to 550 km. So to speak, do not judge a car by its cover. Five-seated hatchback with an attractive design and the latest technology. The steering wheel and dashboard screen are taken over from the latest Golf 8.

Nonetheless, the space and the size of the car are suitable both, for driving in
the narrow streets of the city, and for long holiday trips in the nature.
The name of the car includes the letter combination ID and the number 3.

The translation of the abbreviation ID is an intelligent design that is supplemented with meaning – intelligent, with its own identity, and based on futuristic technologies. However, the number 3 has two meanings. On one hand, it indicates the compact segment, the division of the car’s class into both internal and industry classification systems. On the other hand, ID.3 is a continuation of the Beetle and Golf era, namely, this model is positioned as the third important stopping point of the Volkswagen brand.

Kurbads on the road for 25 years already

August is the birthday month for the transport and logistics company “Kurbads”. This year, August 31st, marks the 25th time already, when the company’s employees, former colleagues and contemporaries meet to remember and rejoice in what they have done, as well as to dream about what more could be done in the time to come.

“Compared to a person’s lifetime, is 25 years a lot or not that much? Similarities can certainly be found, but I think there are pretty big differences between a person’s lifetime and a company’s lifetime. A person can do a lot in both 25 and 80 years, the question is what is their pace and how long they have left to live on this planet,” the head of the company Andis Pikāns reflects on 25 years time.

Since August 31, 1995, the company has grown and developed without losing vitality and ground under its feet. The company has experienced and survived all the crises since the restoration of an independent Latvia, even after the most recent, the Covid-19 pandemic, the company continues its operations without losing the spirit. The most important values ​​of “Kurbads” are maintained and improved each year. Those are loyalty to their customers, high quality of the service provided and, of course, national identity.

The birthday party was celebrated on the company’s cozy premises. The musical atmosphere for the event was created by the Rihards Lībietis trio – Rihards Lībietis (guitars), Erna Daugaviete (the cello) and Matīss Repsis (percussion).

Accompanied by instrumentally dynamic music, photo exhibition was opened – Kurbads 25. The photos featured 25 employees who have made a huge contribution to the company’s development.

The biggest surprise of the evening was towing of Kurbads’ trucks. The strongmen, Mareks Leitis and Aivars Šmaukstelis, showed the guests their strength and dexterity while towing our heavy vehicles weighing as much as up to 19 tons.

“In the last 25 years, I have tried to build a sustainable and lasting company. By doing what I like, I want to maintain the collective energy and be responsible both, for the employees and to the state in the future as well,” sums up the head of the company Andis Pikāns.