An Italian sportscar is a thing of beauty. But if you don't have the cash on hand for a Ferrari or a Lamborghini, you've been left out on the side of the road, watching the parade go by. That is, until now. Alfa Romeo unveiled a concept called the 4C at the 2011 Geneva Motor Show and now it has announced it for production, set to debut in just a couple of weeks at the same auto expo where the concept was showcased two years ago.
If you're thinking, "that's all well and fine, but Alfa Romeo doesn't sell in the United States," let us stop you right there because the 4C is set to relaunch the stoic Italian auto marque in North America.
The 4C is a compact and nimble sportscar, packing an advanced 1.75-liter turbocharged and direct-injected four-cylinder engine right behind its two-seat cockpit. Pricing and specifications have yet to be announced, but the industry is expecting around 240 horsepower to be channeled through its six-speed, dual-clutch, paddle-shift transmission to the rear wheels. The layout is similar to what you might find in, say, the Ferrari 458 Italia, only in a more accessible form.
The finished design — penned by the Alfa Romeo Style Center — appears remarkably faithful to the concept and draws its inspiration from the iconic 1967 Alfa Romeo 33 Stradale. That in itself is a wonderful thing, but pulling up in this Italian beauty next to a Porsche and making it look antiquated and sedate by comparison will be that much more so.
Look for the Alfa Romeo 4C to form part of an exciting Geneva show this year, packed with tantalizing machinery, before it arrives in select Fiat dealerships next year. After that, expect a broader range of Alfa Romeo automobiles to be offered to North American buyers for the first time in decades.