Alfa Romeo has disclosed details of the all-new Alfa Romeo 4C, which signals the return of the brand to the world of lightweight sports coupés. Alfa Romeo opted for carbon fiber as the material for its one-piece monocoque, thanks to its high levels of structural rigidity and low weight at just 65kg. The monocoque is built using Formula 1-derived technologies, developed for Alfa Romeo for series production of up to 1,000 units per year.
To further lighten the 4C, the carmaker used SMC (Sheet Moulding Compound) -- which is lighter than both steel and aluminium -- for the bodywork and made its glass thinner by 15 percent. The Alfa Romeo 4C’s compact shape is well conveyed by its length of less than 4 meters and a wheelbase of 2.38 meters. Thanks to its dry weight of 895kg and a 40:60 front-to-rear weight distribution, the Alfa Romeo 4C could generate 1.1g of lateral acceleration and in excess of 1.2g of deceleration force. To optimize the car’s handling, Alfa Romeo secured the car’s double-wishbone front suspension directly to the monocoque, with the rear using a performance-tuned McPherson arrangement.
The car’s brakes use a patented aluminum/cast iron hybrid construction with ventilated, cross-drilled 305mm/292mm discs (F/R) clamped by Brembo callipers. Coming as standard are 17-inch front and 18-inch rear wheels, while 18/19-inch wheels with Alfa Romeo’s signature, five-hole “telephone dial” design come as optional.
Alfa Romeo 4C will be available to order in the United Kingdom in October, with a starting price of £45,000 on the road. First deliveries are expected to commence in early 2014. Just 3,500 Alfa Romeo 4Cs will be available for sale around the world.
The condensed proportions make this vehicle with two bucket seats genuinely singular among its peers: it has a length of a little less than four metres, a width of 200 cm, a height of 118 cm, and a wheelbase that’s under 2.4 m. These proportions function to accent the auto's 'supercar proportions' and to emphasise its dexterity.
Conceived by Alfa Romeo Centro Stile, developing the 4C's exterior was typified from the beginning by the requirement to improve the car’s style and the technical traits from both energy and streamlining aspects. Because of this, all the design solutions implemented have been maximised in line with the fundamental goal of the vehicle: performance.
To fulfil this objective, the designers considered the outsides as sculptures, and the engineering team worked alongside the design team to fashion every innovative streamlined solution from it. The outcome of this collaboration resulted in an automobile that communicates genuine sports styling owing to a blend of technology and attractiveness, all of which is a vital need for every Alfa Romeo sports car, where shape is always the main function.
Also, each structural component was designed for maximal energy efficacy and to help assist the downward force required to safeguard the greatest grip during higher speed cornering.
The rear mass, muscular and all-encompassing, enfolds and hugs the vehicle’s heart. In fact, the parts and the engine can be seen through the rear window. All this, due to the conception of a significant musculature over the wheels, adds might and potency to the rear.