Alfa’s miniature supercar – the 4C – is already setting records. This time it managed a 8:04 lap of the dreaded Nurburgring, which is the fastest ever time for a car with less than 250 horsepower.
At just 240 fiery Italian horsepower from its turbocharged 1.75-liter four-cylinder engine, this Alfa is a very different Italian take on the sports car than most of its competition.
Where most manufacturers have opted to get bigger and more powerful, Alfa is taking a cue from classic sixties sports cars like the Triumph TR4, or, that matter, the Alfa Spyder. These cars were all about driving dynamics and handling – not just brute force.
When compared to the big, hulking Germans, the Alfa’s gorgeous lines and featherweight minimalism is a breath of fresh air.
And when you see this car’s performance figures you know that it floats like a butterfly and stings like a bee. The 4C will scream from 0-62 mph in 4.5 seconds, pull 1.1 lateral g, and brake hard enough to pop your eyeballs out.
These staggering performance numbers were on display during the lap. Horst von Saurma Alfa’s, test driver, monstered the feisty 4C around the track, making the most of the incredibly sticky Pirelli P Zero tires.
Giving Von Saurma and the Alfa a better shot to compete with bigger and more powerful cars was the incredibly flat torque curve put out by the engine. The torque curve is flat from 2100-4100 rpm, and up to 80 percent of torque is available at 1800 rpm.
The American version of the Alfa 4C will be a bit heavier weighing in at around 2,300 pounds – 220 more than its European counterpart. However, it will cost a comparatively reasonable $54,000.
This may not be cheap for a car this devoid of practicality, but for such a pure sports car it’s a bargain.