Geneva Bound? Alfa Romeo 4C Coupe Concept is What the Enthusiasts Want

Alfa Romeo is a storied brand and has provided plenty of automotive gems, but the business situation isn’t as bright as it used to be. Assuming it’s built on time, however, Alfa may show a brand-new small coupe concept during next month’s Geneva show, in hopes of lifting spirits.

Expected to wear the 4C GTA name, the two-seater will be rear-drive, mid-engined, and lightweight, all qualities that will leave enthusiasts weak-kneed and brimming with anticipation. GTA stands for Gran Turismo Alleggerita, also the name of a popular classic Alfa coupe. The concept was designed by the brand’s styling center in Turin, Italy, but details remain close to Alfa’s chest. At this point, the coupe’s Geneva debut is in limbo due to “delays in the concept model construction,” as relayed by a Fiat spokesman to Automotive News Europe.

What we will eventually see is anybody’s guess. Based on name alone, a miniaturized 8C Competizione sounds appealing, though the 8C’s lengthy front end would need to be chopped down immediately. According to British publication Autocar, Alfa insiders have already dubbed the 4C a “baby 8C.” The small coupe is pegged to go into production at the end of 2012, at an Italian production site of course.

Autocar also reveals the frame will be carbon fiber, and aluminum will be used extensively in the front and rear subframes. A transverse MultiAir mill will likely reside over and ahead of the rear axle, and we’d certainly bet on the inclusion of a manual transmission. The popular engine pick at the moment is the Giulietta’s turbocharged and direct-injected 1750 TBi inline-four with 235 horsepower. Apparently, there’s a curb weight target of 850 kilograms (1784 pounds) in place.

There has already been a price established for the 4C as well: 40,000 euros ($54,600). Then again, Alfa Romeos aren’t even sold in the United States anymore, and the long-floated plan of a return has yet to fully materialize. Fiat sources would only go as far as telling ANE that there hasn’t been a decision made for exporting the 4C to the U.S. Once built, Alfa expects to sell around 5000 4Cs per year.

Sure, $54,600 is pricey but there’s hope. Supposedly, Alfa is working a replacement to the Spider, and it’ll be heavier but less expensive than the 4C GTA. A modern-day Spider is held in high respect and seen as a crucial part of a U.S. offensive. We’ll just have keep on waiting.

john p
what are the chances it'll make it to production untouched and then on to u.s. shores?

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