Detroit Auto Show: 2015 Alfa Romeo 4C Spider is even sexier than the coupe

Article by Christian Andrei, on January 13, 2015

Detroit Auto Show also saw the introduction of the all-new 2015 Alfa Romeo 4C Spider, an open-top version of the well-known coupe which promises to attract even more people to the Italian brand. Just like the coupe version, the 2015 Alfa Romeo 4C Spider is powered by the all-aluminum 1750 cc turbocharged direct injection, dual intercooler four-cylinder engine that produces 237 hp and 258 lb-ft (350 Nm) of torque available from 1,700 rpm.

Bolted to the Alfa TCT (twin-clutch transmission), which delivers the power to the rear wheels, the 4C Spider is able to accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 4.1 seconds, while top speed is 160 mph or 257.5 km/h. The design is not surprising at all as we’ve seen the 4C Coupe.

Still, the 4C Spider received some additional features such as sculpted air intakes on the sides, a removable and stowable cloth roof or an optional carbon fiber hardtop, redesigned headlights and a new deck lid with three heat extractors. Four new alloy wheel designs will be available with sizes ranging from 17- to 19-inches, hiding silver, black, red or yellow brake calipers.

In addition, seven exterior exterior colours will be available, including the Rosso Alfa, Black, White, Basalt Grey Metallic, Rosso Competizione Tri-coat, Madreperla White Tri-coat and all-new Giallo (yellow).

The interior offers six colour combinations. Compared with the coupe version, the weight of the 4C Spider increased only by 22 lbs (10 kg).

Alfa Romeo will offer a standard exhaust system but if you want more, you can have the racing exhaust system, which features integrated dual concentric exhaust tips. If this isn’t enough, Alfa Romeo offers the all-new Akrapovic dual-mode exhaust system (late availability).

The titanium-made Akrapovic exhaust consists of two center-mounted tailpipes, computer-optimized asymmetrical mufflers with a dual-mode exhaust valve system and link pipe with resonator to eliminate in-cabin droning.

If you want to maximize the vehicle’s handling performance, the 2015 Alfa Romeo 4C Spider is available with the Track Package, which includes high-performance shock absorbers with larger front- and rear-sway bards, 18-inch forged-aluminum wheels wrapped in Pirelli P-Zero “AR Racing” tires, a flat-bottomed steering wheel with microfiber inserts, carbon fiber exterior mirrors, carbon fiber gauge cluster bezel, as well as Black leather performance seats with microfiber inserts and Red or Yellow accent stitching.

Press Release

All-new 2015 Alfa Romeo 4C Spider Delivers Race-inspired Performance, Advanced Technologies, Seductive Italian Style, and now an Even More Exhilarating Driving Experience With Open-air Freedom

  • All-new Alfa Romeo 4C Spider's open-air performance cockpit and mid-engine proportions draw from more than 100 years of groundbreaking and functional Italian design
  • Unique carbon fiber windshield frame and available carbon fiber "halo" highlight 4C Spider's ultralight carbon fiber monocoque and aluminum chassis structures, which enable an incredible power-to-weight ratio and supercar-level performance
  • Innovative and unique technological solutions: all-aluminum 1750 direct-injection, intercooled, advanced turbocharged engine with dual variable-valve timing paired to the blistering fast Alfa TCT (twin-clutch transmission) and Alfa DNA selector with four adjustable drive modes
  • All-new available Akrapovic dual-mode exhaust system features dual, center-mounted tips with carbon fiber surround and signature Alfa resonant sound  
  • Handcrafted in Modena, Italy, Alfa Romeo 4C Spider combines two excellences – the performance engineering of Alfa Romeo and the craftsmanship of Maserati manufacturing
  • All-new 2015 Alfa Romeo 4C Spider arrives at U.S. and Canadian dealerships this summer starting at $63,900 MSRP

Adding to the Alfa Romeo brand's legendary racing history and the exciting experience of open-air motoring, the all-new 2015 Alfa Romeo 4C Spider debuts with panoramic views complemented with a signature Alfa exhaust note, plus the essential sportiness of the award-winning 4C – handcrafted in Modena, Italy; groundbreaking and seductive Italian style; state-of-the-art Formula 1 inspired carbon fiber monocoque chassis that enables an incredible power-to-weight ratio; advanced technologies, including the all-aluminum 1750 turbocharged and intercooled engine with direct-injection and variable-valve timing that enable supercar-level performance.

"Spiders have always been at the very core of the 'Great Alfa Romeos,' and our all-new 4C Spider builds on the brand's motorsport and technology heritage for an open-air experience that is pure driving exhilaration," said Reid Bigland, Head of Alfa Romeo North America. "From its track-proven 1750 turbocharged engine, to its hand-laid carbon fiber monocoque chassis, the 4C Spider takes the innovation and ingenuity of the 4C and delivers an open-air experience without sacrificing any of its supercar-level performance and capability."

The 2015 Alfa Romeo 4C Spider arrives at U.S. and Canadian dealerships this summer with a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of $63,900 (excluding $1,595 destination).

"4C" and the Legacy of Alfa Romeo
The Alfa Romeo 4C Spider name recalls the brand's great sporting tradition. The acronyms 8C and 6C in the 1930s and 1940s distinguished racing and road cars fitted with powerful eight- and six-cylinder engines. Like the award-winning 4C, the all-new Alfa Romeo 4C Spider model's designation is a return to "the great Alfa Romeos" and continues this tradition with the innovative all-aluminum 1750 turbocharged, intercooled, direct injection, four-cylinder engine, delivering an impressive 136 horsepower per liter.

With seating for two, panoramic views and the soundtrack of an Italian performance-tuned engine and exhaust, Spiders are among the most exhilarating experiences in motoring – and represent the very core of Alfa Romeo's DNA and heritage.

The 4C Spider draws from a bloodline that includes some of the most purpose-built performance models, which illustrate lightness and efficiency with undeniable Alfa Romeo style – the aluminum-bodied 8C 2900 B Touring (1938); the 1900 C52 "Flying Saucer" (1952), which could exceed 140 mph (230 kph); and most notably the legendary 33 Stradale (1967), with its mid-engine and magnesium alloy and steel tube chassis "clothed" by groundbreaking styling, which is functional and distinctly Italian. And now it's the 4C Spider's turn to deliver the driving thrill, performance and unforgettable emotion that only an Alfa Romeo Spider provokes.

Groundbreaking and seductive Italian style
Continuing the groundbreaking theme of technology, performance and Italian style, the all-new 2015 Alfa Romeo 4C Spider builds upon the brand's journey, which was embarked upon with the 8C Competizione (2008), 8C Spider (2009), 4C (2015), and most recently, the 4C Spider Concept, which debuted at the 84th International Geneva Motor Show.

Inspired by the 33 Stradale, the all-new Alfa Romeo 4C Spider transcends this legendary racecar's mid-engine body forms and follows its purposeful and lightweight performance tradition with sheet-molded compound (SMC) composite panels forming its seductive Italian design, and "clothing" its state-of-the-art carbon fiber monocoque chassis and all-aluminum 1750 turbocharged, direct-injected engine.

Covering the "beating heart" of this Italian supercar is a deck lid with three functional heat extractors and an aerodynamically tuned spoiler. And it's from the 4C Spider's "beating heart" where every other design element starts: two muscular forms straddle the rear hood and elevate the body above the cockpit's beltline for visual strength and foundation for the black or available carbon fiber "halo" (late availability). The rear fascia and round rear LED illuminated tail lamps blend into the muscular rear wings for a powerful stance, while stylistically incorporating large functional air intakes to cool the engine. Below, dual exhausts are mounted at the corners and highlight the 4C Spider's supercar stance. Inspired by the 4C Spider Concept, an all-new Akrapovic dual-mode center-mounted performance exhaust system will be available on the 4C Spider (late availability).

On each side of the all-new 4C Spider, the sculpted air intakes spring a muscular and dynamic form that lead elegantly into the headlamps. Highlighting its exotic monocoque is a carbon fiber windshield frame, which promotes strength and lightness, while providing the attachment points for the removable, stowable cloth roof, or available exposed carbon fiber hardtop (late availability).

Leading from the 4C Spider's windshield and down the hood are two muscular hood forms, which naturally conclude at the signature Alfa Romeo shield-shaped grille and emblem. Together with the two side air intakes designed in the front fascia, the 4C Spider forms the famous "Trilobo" within which the iconic logo is placed – and a significant facet of Alfa Romeo's distinctive design.

Performance-focused cockpit
The all-new Alfa Romeo 4C Spider's cockpit is inspired from racing; purpose built with only the essential driving components stylistically integrated.

The Alfa Romeo 4C Spider features two composite-framed sport seats with standard leather and an exposed carbon fiber monocoque that exemplifies its race-inspired technologies. Furthermore, a driver-oriented cockpit with flat-bottom, leather performance steering wheel with paddle-shifters and aluminum pedals speak to the brand's racing spirit. For an upscale look, the fully wrapped premium-leather interior with accent stitching is standard on the Alfa Romeo 4C Spider. For an added touch of exclusivity and technology, unique carbon fiber vent surrounds and other carbon fiber trim pieces are available as part of a new Carbon Fiber Trim Package. Highlighting the use of advanced technology is a 7-inch full-color driver information display (DID) cluster, which displays vehicle information through high-impact graphics to keep the driver focused on the road, or track, ahead.

New to the Alfa Romeo 4C lineup is the addition of an Alpine premium audio system. Designed for audiophiles, this new head unit enables the 4C Spider to offer its passengers premium sound quality and multiple connectivity and media options, including handsfree Bluetooth phone, Bluetooth streaming, USB port, iPod interface and CD/MP3 capabilities. In addition, the Alpine radio provides access to HD radio and SiriusXM Radio for high-definition broadcast audio.

A vivid array of colors, materials and design details
Adding to the excitement of owning an Alfa Romeo are the personalization options that each client can select.

Seven exterior colors are available for the 4C Spider, and include: Rosso Alfa (Red), Black, White, Basalt Gray Metallic, Rosso Competizione Tri-coat (Red), Madreperla White Tri-coat and all-new Giallo Prototipo (Yellow).

Complementing the 4C Spider's exterior are six interior combinations, which include two seat material choices: Black leather with Red accent stitching, Red leather with Black accent stitching, new Black leather with Giallo accent stitching, and exclusive to the Track Package – Black racing leather seats with microfiber inserts and Red or Yellow accent stitching.

For a bespoke look, and all new to the 4C model lineup, a contrasting Tobacco leather seat accompanied with a Black leather Interior accented with Tobacco stitching will be offered (late availability).

With the arrival of the 4C Spider are six wheel choices, including four all-new wheel designs, which include staggered fitting 17 x 7.0-inch (front) and 18 x 8.0-inch (rear) alloy wheels in Silver or Dark Gray finish. For added style and performance, larger 18 x 7.0-inch (front) and wider 19 x 8.5-inch (rear) forged wheels in Silver or Dark Gray finish are also available. Like the 4C, the signature five-hole design wheels in 18 x 7.0-inch (front) and 19 x 8.5-inch (rear) in Silver or Dark Gray are also available.

Completing the look are four brake caliper color choices, including Silver (standard) or available Red, Yellow, or Black.

Mid-engine layout with a unique set of technological solutions
Thanks to its mid-engine layout, advanced technology and compact size, the all-new Alfa Romeo 4C Spider demonstrates its precision, agility and performance credentials with a top speed of 160 miles per hour (mph), 0-to-60 mph in 4.1 seconds, 1.1 g of lateral acceleration and 1.25 g of maximum braking deceleration.

Delivering the ultra-lightweight architecture needed for maximum performance and dynamic efficiency, Alfa Romeo engineers looked to Formula 1 and only the most advanced supercars for state-of-the-art materials. The result is a monocoque chassis made entirely of unidirectional, "pre-preg" carbon fiber layers that are hand-laid for extraordinary stiffness and strength. At 236 pounds, the highly exotic carbon fiber monocoque chassis delivers a material performance that is three-times stronger and seven-times lighter than steel. Completing the competition-grade architecture are front- and rear-chassis structures and an engine-mounting frame made from lightweight aluminum.

Thanks to the monocoque's inherent rigidity, Alfa Romeo engineers were able to minimize structural differences between the 4C Spider and 4C, resulting in a weight of only 2,487 pounds – an increase of only 22 pounds over the 4C. For a technical look, header strength and low center of gravity, the 4C Spider features a unidirectional carbon fiber windshield frame that is adhered and bolted to the monocoque chassis. In addition, a specially contoured aluminum roll bar (underneath the Black or carbon fiber "halo") provides mounting points for the new rear deck lid, while unique upper body brackets and a high-strength steel engine compartment cross beam maximize torsional rigidity.

Alfa Romeo engineers continued the use of state-of-the-art materials by creating the bodywork entirely of sheet-molded compound (SMC), a low-density, high-strength composite material that is 20 percent lighter and dimensionally more rigid than steel. Engineers even optimized the Alfa Romeo 4C Spider's windshield and side windows by using 10 percent thinner glass to reduce weight by up to 15 percent.

Finally, two sport seats feature a carbon fiber and fiberglass reinforced-composite structure to deliver the strength and seating position needed for performance driving.

The heart and soul — the all-aluminum 1750 turbocharged engine with direct injection
The engine is the "beating heart" of any Alfa Romeo, and for the all-new 4C Spider, it beats to an innovative, all-aluminum 1750 turbocharged and intercooled engine with dual (intake and exhaust) continuous variable-valve timing that delivers 237 horsepower – or an impressive 136 horsepower per liter.

To ensure exceptional performance and drivability on the racetrack or city streets, the 1750 turbocharged engine features cutting-edge technologies. High-pressure direct-injection (2,900 psi / 200 bar) with multi-hole fuel injectors provide a more even spray. To increase performance, while reducing oil consumption and emissions, the cylinder head inlet ducts have an optimized design, while cylinder liners are made from thin cast-iron. The addition of an electric thermostat helps the 1750 turbo engine reduce warm-up times and tailpipe emissions. Minimizing vibration at higher engine speeds, the engine's crankshaft features eight counterweights. Last, intake and exhaust systems are optimized for Alfa Romeo 4C Spider's mid-engine layout.

A new generation turbocharger features a pulse-converter exhaust manifold to exploit pressure waves and boost torque at low-engine speeds. A wastegate valve adjusts turbo pressure and improves the engine's efficiency. Advanced turbo technology enables the Alfa Romeo 4C Spider to maximize torque at low engine speeds and deliver more response to driver input by increasing combustion efficiency and turbine speed, all while eliminating turbo lag. As a result, torque delivery is instantaneous, with a peak of 258 lb.-ft. (350 Nm); 80 percent of which is available at only 1,700 rpm.

Three available exhaust systems, including an all-new Akrapovic dual-mode system 
From the 4C Spider Concept to production, the all-new Alfa Romeo 4C Spider will offer its most hardcore motorsport enthusiasts an all-new Akrapovic dual-mode exhaust system with Alfa Romeo's signature resonant sound (late availability).

Developed in cooperation with the racing exhaust experts at Akrapovic, this beautifully crafted titanium system consists of two center-mounted tailpipes, computer-optimized asymmetrical mufflers with a dual-mode exhaust valve system and link pipe with resonator to eliminate in-cabin droning. For a technical look that emphasizes 4C Spider's lightweight design, a carbon fiber bezel surrounds the Akrapovic center-mounted exhaust tips.

Like the 4C, the Alfa Romeo 4C Spider will also offer the standard exhaust system and a racing exhaust system. Similar in design, the optional racing exhaust removes the muffler, and instead integrates a uniquely designed asymmetric Y-shape system after the catalyst. For added style, the racing exhaust system features integrated dual concentric exhaust tips.

Advanced technological solutions: Alfa TCT twin-clutch and Alfa DNA selector technologies further make the 4C Spider an extension of the driver 
Teamed to the all-aluminum 1750 turbocharged engine is a paddle-shifting Alfa TCT (twin-clutch transmission) tuned specifically for the all-new Alfa Romeo 4C Spider. With its uniquely calibrated software that adjusts with the Alfa DNA selector system, the Alfa TCT's gearshifts are designed to become most aggressive in the Dynamic and Race modes. Further making this Alfa Romeo an extension of the driver are rev-matching paddle shifts and precise gear changes as quick as 130 milliseconds at full throttle.

For driving convenience in Dynamic, Natural or All-weather modes, the Alfa Romeo TCT gearbox can utilize an "auto" mode. Instantaneously optimizing the Alfa Romeo 4C Spider's level of performance is the brand's innovative Alfa DNA selector. With four modes, including "Race" mode, the Alfa DNA selector can optimize the engine, transmission, Alfa Electronic Q2 differential and electronic stability control (ESC) calibrations to the levels needed by the driver. With a touch of the Alfa DNA selector, the driving dynamics of the Alfa Romeo 4C Spider can be changed to (in order of increasing capability):

  • All-weather – designed to ensure maximum control in adverse weather conditions and enables gentler accelerator input and special engine and brake control logic to match road speed and prevent skidding
  • Natural – enables grand touring comfort and smooth drivability for the Alfa TCT gearbox
  • Dynamic – enables improved driving performance via a more aggressive powertrain calibration and less intrusive ESC setting
  • Race – available while in Dynamic mode, Race mode is the most extreme performance mode, putting the driver in total control of the car under race conditions. ESC and anti-slip regulation (ASR) are deactivated to allow the driver to control traction through the accelerator pedal. The Alfa Electronic Q2 differential control system remains active for fast exits out of corners or bends
    • In Race mode, launch control can be activated, allowing the Alfa Romeo 4C Spider to deliver 0-to-60 mph acceleration blasts as low as 4.1-seconds as soon as the driver releases the brake

Maximum road-holding suspension

The all-new Alfa Romeo 4C Spider adopts race-derived solutions to ensure maximum agility and road holding performance. The front suspension is comprised of a "superimposed" double wishbone configuration for direct and unfiltered feedback. At the rear, an advanced MacPherson suspension ensures superb road-holding attributes – even in the most extreme of maneuvers. Both front and rear suspensions are made from aluminum and high-strength steel. For the North American market, the Alfa Romeo 4C Spider is designed with stiffer springs, larger front- and rear-sway bars, and re-tuned shock absorbers.

Track Package

For maximum handling performance, the all-new Alfa Romeo 4C Spider is available with the Track Package. This package includes high-performance shock absorbers with larger front- and rear-sway bars, with available Pirelli P-Zero "AR Racing" tires; performance flat-bottom steering wheel with microfiber inserts; carbon fiber exterior mirrors and carbon fiber gauge cluster bezel, plus the availability of Black leather performance seats with microfiber inserts and Red or Yellow accent stitching.

Enthusiast-desired "manual" steering

In line with the Alfa Romeo 4C Spider's ultra-lightweight design and desire for maximum agility and road feel, the conventional power steering system is removed altogether. Through a manual steering system and 15.7:1 quick-ratio steering, the Alfa Romeo 4C Spider provides the driver with maximum feel-of-the-road. Furthermore, an appropriate steering-wheel load is maintained thanks to the low overall weight of the car.

Powerful stopping power – up to 1.25 g of braking deceleration

The Alfa Romeo 4C Spider's brake system is designed for track use, where decisive braking, even under the most intensive conditions, is required. To deliver maximum stopping power and 1.25 g of braking deceleration for 60-0 in under 100 feet, the Alfa Romeo 4C Spider is equipped with four self-ventilating perforated discs and Brembo four-piston aluminum calipers at the front axle.

Excellence handcrafted in Modena, Italy

The Alfa Romeo 4C Spider combines two excellences – the racing and performance know how of Alfa Romeo engineering, plus the craftsmanship and manufacturing expertise of Maserati.

The very best technical and industrial expertise of the Alfa Romeo and Maserati brands were used to develop the 4C and all-new 4C Spider. Teamwork between the two brands included the integration of the Alfa Romeo Centro Stile with the well-known craftsmanship of the Maserati brand's Modena workshop. In addition, the Alfa Romeo 4C and 4C Spider are boosted by the technological contributions of Italian suppliers, who are international leaders in manufacturing high-performance components.

This is a distinguishing trait of Alfa Romeo, a brand with a century of history that continues to be one of the most famous and popular ambassadors of Italian products around the world.

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