Alfa Romeo 4C Spider

    Will the Alfa Romeo 4C Spider be Robb Report's 2016 Car of the Year?

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    The Alfa Romeo 4C Spider displays a design reminiscent of the marque’s 33 Stradale from the late 1960s—a V-8-powered car that could cover a kilometer faster than any other production car; not even the V-12-powered Lamborghini Miura or Ferrari Daytona could catch it. Like the 33 Stradale, the 4C Spider is quick and agile because its design is based on the principle that speed is a function of weight and engine power. It weighs less than 2,500 pounds thanks to a monocoque tub and body panels made of carbon fiber. And though the 4C Spider has about half the power of Alfa Romeo’s 8C Competizione, it is just as fast.

    Alfa Romeo has compared the 4C Spider to the Porsche Boxster, but drivers may find the car more resembles the Lotus Elise, a small 4-cylinder sports car that is a pleasure to drive because of its perfectly balanced chassis and dialed-in handling.

    In addition to its speed, the 33 Stradale was distinguished by its high price; it was the most expensive car on the market in its time. The 4C Spider, however, with a starting price of just under $64,000, costs far less than any other carbon-fiber-bodied sports car.

    Configuration: Mid-engine, rear-wheel-drive convertible

    Engine: 1.75-liter turbocharged inline 4

    Transmission: 6-speed twin-clutch with paddle shifters

    Power: 237 hp at 6,000 rpm

    Torque: 258 ft lbs at 4,250 rpm

    Curb Weight: 2,487 lbs

    Zero to 60 mph: 4.1 seconds

    Top Speed: 160 mph

    Base Price: $63,900

    (alfaromeousa.com)

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