Gi­u­lia leads Alfa’s charge

NT News - Motoring - - CARS GUIDE - By NEIL DOWL­ING

A PIV­OTAL year ap­proaches for Alfa Romeo as 2012 sig­nals star­tling changes to its line-up.

Bound­ing out of par­ent Fiat’s grasp of Chrysler and its re­sult­ing sales path­way di­rect to the huge US mar­ket, Alfa’s plans for next year in­clude the launch of a new SUV, a mid-size Gi­u­lia sedan to re­place the 159, and a re­turn to its sport­ing roots with a sen­sa­tional mi­dengine coupe.

The Alfa Romeo 4C coupe, an un­ex­pected in­clu­sion on the Geneva mo­tor show stand this year, has gone within six months from con­cept to a build date and even an es­ti­mated price tag.

The 4C is a street-ready en­hance­ment of Alfa’s 33 Stradale of 1967.

Like the Stradale, which was based on the (then) 33 model, the 4C model is based on Gi­uli­etta com­po­nents.

But in­stead of a fron­tengine, front-drive lay­out, the 4m-long, 850kg 4C coupe puts its 150kW 1.8-litre four­cylin­der tur­bocharged en­gine be­hind the two seats and driv­ing the rear wheels.

Alfa in­sid­ers say its good for a 0-100km/h sprint of less than five sec­onds and a po- ten­tial top of 250km/h. Pric­ing is ex­pected to be about Euro 45,000 which equates to a BMW 335i Coupe — about $130,000 in Aus­tralia.

Ini­tially, Alfa sug­gested global pro­duc­tion of only 1500 units but more re­cent news is that it will make 4000 a year.

In ad­di­tion, it will build up to 10,000 road­ster ver­sions— over an un­spec­i­fied time — for the Fiat Group’s spe­cial­ist per­for­mance arm Abarth.

The 4C will be the first affordable rear-drive two-door sports car since the Duetto Spi­der of 1994.

Alfa made 1000 8C mod­els — us­ing Maserati en­gines — in 2007 and 2008 but these were made only in left-hand drive and priced at about Euro 200,000.

The new mid-size Gi­u­lia sedan will be launched by Alfa Romeo next year to re­place the 159

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.