Alfa Romeo’s 4C has a retail price of 53,000 euros in Italy, comparable to the prices of the potential rival cars built by Porsche and Lotus. Alfa is in the process of rolling out the 240-hp 4C throughout Europe. It will also be launched in the second quarter of 2014 as part of Alfa's comeback in the U.S. market. To those who don’t know, Alfa left the U.S. in 1995. Alfa intends to produce 3,500 units a year of the rear-drive, two-seat 4C.
The coupe will be a halo car for Alfa Romeo (Fiat's sporty brand). Alfa has not released a new product recently and offers just two products – the MiTo minicar and Giulietta compact hatchback. Industry association ACEA said that Alfa’s sales in the EU and EFTA markets dropped by 31% in the first eight months to 44,866 units.
In comparison, the 275-hp Porsche Cayman has a starting price of 55,090 euros in Italy. The Cayman is longer and heavier than the 4C. Meanwhile, the 220-hp Lotus Elise S is priced at 51,390 euros in Italy. When interviewed by Automotive News Europe, Mauro Pierallini (Fiat's European product development head) said that the 4C is more comfortable than the Elise S.
Its performance and handling are also superior to that of the Elise S. He added that the Porsche Cayman may be beautiful and have a “great sound” but it’s as if you’re in a VW Golf if it’s being driven slowly.
On the other hand, those who drive the 4C always feel like they’re in a racecar. Gian Primo Quagliano, president of Centro Studi Promotor research center, believes that the 4C will boost Alfa's sporty reputation. In his opinion, Alfa will have an easy time in selling the affordable mini-supercar.
The compact proportions make this car with 2 bucket seats truly one-of-a-kind among its rivals: it is just short of 4 meters in length, 200 cm in width, 118 cm in height and with a wheelbase of under 2.4 meters. These dimensions serve both to highlight the vehicle’s 'supercar proportions' and to emphasize its deftness.
Created by Alfa Romeo Centro Stile, the advancement of the 4C's exterior was described from the beginning by the demand to improve the style of the vehicle and the technical attributes both from a dynamic and aerodynamic point of view. Consequently, all the style solutions adopted have been enhanced in line with the definitive aim of the car: performance.
To satisfy this objective, the surfaces were dealt with as sculpture and engineers worked one next to the other with the designers to carve all the ingenious aerodynamic solutions out of it. The outcome of this partnership led to a vehicle that displays immaculate sports style through a harmony of innovation and magnificence, which is a basic requirement for any Alfa Romeo sports vehicle, where shape is first at all times and foremost function.
Besides, every basic component has been conceived for peak dynamic effectiveness, and to help make the downforce required to guarantee maximum grip under fast cornering.