Alfa Romeo’s breathtaking 4C sportscar has been launched although it will be a short while before it hits these shores. Styled in the same vein as the larger 8C Competizione, it has to be one of the best looking cars to be introduced by any marque.
The mid-engined car is powered by a new, aluminium turbocharged petrol engine. Although it might seem small at just 1750cc, it develops 240 bhp and 350Nm of torque, both records for specific power for this size of engine. The engine is twinned with the latest TCT twin clutch semi-automatic gearbox and Alfa’s DNA driving mode selector, which in this application also comes with a race mode.
The chassis is made of carbon fibre, endowing the car with great strength and light weight. The weight of the chassis is a remarkably low 65 kgs, while the car as a whole has a dry weight of 895 kg and a 40:60 front:rear weight distribution.
0-100 km/h takes just 4.5 seconds and top speed is 258 km/h. The light weight also contributes to fuel economy, the 4C being fully Euro 6 compliant and falling in to Band D.
Double wishbone front suspension is mounted directly onto the monocoque to ensure direct handling and steering. The rear uses McPherson struts. Brakes are a special aluminium/cast iron hybrid and are drilled and ventilated for track use. 17″ front and 18″ rear wheels are standard, with larger wheels, up to 19″ available as options.
The steering is inassisted to ensure proper road feel and feedback is experienced by the driver and the steering ratio is designed to allow 90% of bends to be taken without moving your hands around the steering wheel.
The interior features exposed carbon fibre and a multi-function TFT digital display instead of conventional instruments. Composite bucket seats and aluminium pedals complete the package.
Although the car officially goes on sale in Ireland at the end of this year, due to high demand across Europe and the limited production run of just 3,500 cars per year, any prospective buyer will not get their car until late 2014. It’s a car I can’t wait to drive.