It’s been a painful two years of waiting since the 2011 Geneva study but finally, Alfa Romeo has revealed the first images of the 4C sports coupe that will make its world debut in the upcoming Geneva Auto Show on March 5.
The transition from concept to production hasn’t robbed the 4C of its delicious styling, which is all but identical sans some details like the headlamps, tail lights and door mirrors, nor its specifications or dimensions that measure “less than 4 meters” long, 1.18 m high and 2.0 m wide and a wheelbase of “less than 2.4 meters”.
In an era when most auto manufacturers boast about carbon fiber parts in their new sports cars, Alfa Romeo has equipped the 4C with an all-carbon fiber monocoque, with just the front and rear frames being made of aluminum.
Alfa Romeo is still keeping its cards very close to its chest as far as weight or performance numbers are concerned, divulging only that the 4C has a weight-to-power ratio of less than 4 kg/HP.
The 4C uses an evolution of the 1,750cc (1.75-liters) turbocharged four-cylinder engine from the Giulietta Quadrifoglio Verde. It features a new aluminum block and specifically-designed intake and exhaust manifolds, as well as direct injection and dual continuous valve timing.
Like in the concept, the production 4C has a mid-engined configuration, with power transferred to the rear wheels via the TCT twin dry clutch transmission. It features an auto as well as a sequential mode, with paddle shifters behind the steering wheel.
Having debuted on the MiTo, the DNA selector that changes the throttle, steering and gearbox settings is not exactly a novelty. Its fourth mode that is added to the Dynamic, Natural and All Weather that are standard on other models, though, is: developed specifically for the 4C and aptly named Race it is, according to the company, designed to enhance the handling characteristics on track driving.
The 4C, which will go on sale later this year and mark Alfa Romeo’s return to the U.S. market, will be manufactured (in very limited numbers, if our insider report is correct) at Maserati’s plant.
By Andrew Tsaousis