There's no doubt that the later Alfa Spiders are seen to lag in the desirability stakes - but should they? The ultimate 105 series Spider has to be the RHD 1750 Duetto. With so few made it blends the sweetest 'Nord' engine with the prettiest 105 series Spider body. Prices for a correctly restored one can push 45k plus in the UK. In comparison, a privately owned last of the line S4 in similar condition will make roughly a quarter of that at online classic car auction and an S3 less. All Spiders have essentially the same Nord engines and 5 speed manual gearboxes, which as we've talked about in previous posts is the heart of the car. Yes, a few 105 series were fitted with now rare autoboxes, but unless you have a genuine medical reason for needing one, we'd go for a manual everytime. If the essence of all Alfa Romeo Spiders then is the same, why the enormous differences in price? Well rarety of some models perhaps but at the end of the day it comes down to body styling. S2 prices have certainly firmed up in recent years. Last spring this particlular Alfisti passed on a very nicely presented privately owned RHD S2 2000 at 14k as being too pricey - this spring, I wouldn't hesitate. However, there is one S2 in particular that the Alfa owners in the Eclectic Auctions office think is a very canny buy - the S2 Spider Junior. Never heard of it? Not so many have. When new, it was the poverty spec Spider. Nord 1300 or 1600 engine yet still fitted with trim from the then dated Duetto. And its the trim which now makes all the difference. How so? Well you get the lovely Duetto metal painted dash and gauge pod, steering wheel and alloy door pull amongst other things. The items that make the Duetto cabin such a wonderful place to be in. In fact, with the 1600 engine, you'd be hard pressed to tell you weren't driving a Duetto. At almost a third of the price and with the S2 kamm tail looking prettier by the year the Spider 1600 Junior is our recommendation - if you can find an original one. As for the S3? - if you want the Alfa Spider for the driving experience and aren't fussed by the details, then an S3 that someone else has brought up to spec is a good way into Alfa ownership. Bearing in mind that restoration, running costs and spareparts (except trim) are roughly the same for all models, the question of which one to go for surely comes down to why you want one - and for us anyway, an S2 Spider Junior ticks all the boxes. So would we pass on a Duetto - absolutely not if money were no consideration - but talking top budget, we'd take an S2 Spider Junior and a late GT junior with the change. As the old acronym says - Alfa - 'Always Looking For Another'. Eclectic Passion.