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News   January 12, 2015   by Auto Service World

All-new 2015 Alfa Romeo 4C Spider Delivers Race-inspired Performance


Adding to the Alfa Romeo brand’s legendary racing history and the exciting experience of open-air motoring, the all-new 2015 Alfa Romeo 4C Spider debuts with panoramic views complemented with a signature Alfa exhaust note, plus the essential sportiness of the award-winning 4C Coupe: handcrafted in Modena, Italy; ground-breaking and seductive Italian style; state-of-the-art Formula 1 inspired carbon fiber monocoque chassis that enables an incredible power-to-weight ratio; advanced technologies, including the all-aluminum 1750 cc turbocharged engine with direct-injection, dual intercoolers, and variable-valve timing that enable supercar-level performance.

The Alfa Romeo 4C Spider name recalls the brand’s great sporting tradition: the acronyms 8C and 6C in the 1930s and 1940s distinguished racing and road cars fitted with powerful eight- and six-cylinder engines. Like the award-winning 4C Coupe, the all-new 2015 Alfa Romeo 4C Spider model’s designation is a return to “the great Alfa Romeos” and continues this tradition with the innovative all-aluminum 1750 cc turbocharged direct injection, dual intercooler four-cylinder engine, delivering an impressive 136 horsepower-per-liter.

Inspired by the 33 Stradale, the all-new Alfa Romeo 4C Spider transcends this legendary racecar’s mid-engine body forms and follows its purposeful and lightweight performance tradition with sheet-molded compound (SMC) composite panels forming its seductive Italian design, and “clothing” its state-of-the-art carbon fiber monocoque chassis and all-aluminum 1750 cc turbocharged, direct-injected engine.

Covering the “beating heart” of this Italian supercar is a deck-lid with three functional heat extractors and an aerodynamically tuned spoiler. And it’s from the 4C Spider’s “beating heart” where every other design element starts: two muscular forms straddle the rear hood and elevate the body above the cockpit’s beltline for visual strength and foundation for the black or available carbon fiber “halo.” The rear fascia and round rear LED illuminated taillamps blend into the muscular rear wings for a powerful stance, while stylistically incorporating large functional air intakes to cool the engine. Below, dual exhausts are mounted at the corners and highlight the 4C Spider’s supercar stance. Inspired by the 4C Spider Concept, an all-new, Akrapovic dual-mode center-mounted performance exhaust system will be available on the 4C Spider (late availability).

On each side of the all-new 4C Spider, the sculpted air intakes spring a muscular and dynamic form that lead elegantly into the headlamps. Highlighting its exotic monocoque is a carbon fiber windshield frame, which promotes strength and lightness, while providing the attachment points for the removable, stowable cloth roof, or available exposed carbon fiber hardtop (late availability).

Leading from the 4C Spider’s windshield and down the hood are two muscular hood forms, which naturally conclude at the signature Alfa Romeo shield-shaped grille and emblem. Together with the two side air intakes designed in the front fascia, the 4C Spider forms the famous “Trilobo,” a significant facet of Alfa Romeo’s distinctive design.

Thanks to its mid-engine layout, advanced technology and compact size, the all-new 2015 Alfa Romeo 4C Spider demonstrates its precision, agility and performance credentials with a top speed of 160 miles per hour (mph), 0-to-60 mph acceleration blasts in an estimated 4.1-seconds, 1.1 g of lateral acceleration and 1.25 g of maximum braking deceleration. 

Delivering the ultra-lightweight architecture needed for maximum performance and dynamic efficiency, Alfa Romeo engineers looked to Formula 1 and only the most advanced supercars for state-of-the-art materials. The result is a monocoque chassis made entirely of unilateral, “pre-preg” carbon fiber layers that are hand-laid for extraordinary stiffness and strength. At 236 pounds, the highly exotic carbon fiber monocoque chassis delivers a material performance that is three-times stronger and seven-times lighter than steel. Completing the competition-grade architecture are front- and rear-chassis structures and an engine-mounting frame made from lightweight aluminum.

Thanks to the monocoque’s inherent rigidity, Alfa Romeo engineers were able to minimize structural differences between the 4C Spider and 4C Coupe. For a technical look, header strength and to keep the center of gravity low, the 4C Spider features a unilateral carbon fiber windshield frame that is adhered and bolted to the monocoque chassis. In addition, a specially contoured aluminum rollbar (underneath the black or carbon fiber “halo”) provides mounting points for the new rear decklid, while unique upper body brackets and a high-strength steel engine compartment cross beam maximize torsional rigidity.

Alfa Romeo engineers continued the use of state-of-the-art materials by creating the bodywork entirely of SMC (sheet molded compound), a low-density, high-strength composite material that is 20 percent lighter and dimensionally more rigid than steel. Engineers even optimized the Alfa Romeo 4C Spider’s windshield and side windows by using 10 percent thinner glass to reduce weight by up to 15 percent.

Finally, two sport seats feature a carbon fiber and fiberglass reinforced-composite structure to deliver the strength and seating position needed for performance driving.

The engine is the “beating heart” of any Alfa Romeo, and for the all-new 2015 4C Spider, it beats to an innovative, all-aluminum 1750 cc turbocharged and intercooled engine with dual (intake and exhaust) continuous variable-valve timing (VVT) that delivers 237 horsepower – or an impressive 136 horsepower-per-liter.

To ensure exceptional performance and drivability on the racetrack or city streets, the 1750 cc turbocharged engine features cutting-edge technologies. High pressure direct-injection (2,900 psi / 200 bar) with multi-hole fuel injectors provide a more even spray. To increase performance, while reducing oil consumption and emissions, the cylinder head inlet ducts have an optimized design, while cylinder liners are made from thin cast-iron. The addition of an electric thermostat helps the 1750 cc turbo engine reduce warm-up times and tailpipe emissions. Minimizing vibration at higher engine speeds, the engine’s crankshaft features eight counter weights. Last, intake and exhaust systems are optimized for Alfa Romeo 4C Spider’s mid-engine layout. 

A new generation turbocharger features a pulse-converter exhaust manifold to exploit pressure waves and boost torque at low-engine speeds. A waste gate valve adjusts turbo pressure and improves the engine’s efficiency. Advanced turbo technology enables the Alfa Romeo 4C Spider to maximize torque at low engine speeds and deliver more response to driver input by increasing combustion efficiency and turbine speed, all while eliminating turbo lag. As a result, torque delivery is instantaneous, with a peak of 258 ft.-lb. (350 N•m); 80 percent of which is available at only 1,700 rpm.

From the 4C Spider Concept to production, the all-new Alfa Romeo 4C Spider will offer its most hardcore motorsport enthusiasts an all-new Akrapovic dual-mode exhaust system with Alfa Romeo’s signature resonant sound (late availability).

Developed in cooperation with the racing exhaust experts at Akrapovic, this beautifully crafted titanium system consists of two center-mounted tailpipes, computer-optimized asymmetrical mufflers with a dual-mode exhaust valve system and link pipe with resonator to eliminate in-cabin droning. For a technical look that emphasizes 4C Spider’s lightweight design, a carbon fiber bezel surrounds the Akrapovic center mounted exhaust tips.

Like the 4C Coupe, the Alfa Romeo 4C Spider wil
l also offer the standard exhaust system and a racing exhaust system. Similar in design, the optional racing exhaust removes the muffler, and instead integrates a uniquely designed asymmetric Y-shape system after the catalyst. For added style, the racing exhaust system features integrated dual concentric exhaust tips.

Teamed to the all-aluminum 1750 cc turbocharged engine is a paddle-shifting Alfa TCT (twin-clutch transmission) tuned specifically for the all-new Alfa Romeo 4C Spider. With its uniquely calibrated software that adjusts with the Alfa DNA selector system, the Alfa TCT’s gearshifts are designed to become most aggressive in the Dynamic and Race modes. Further making this Alfa Romeo an extension of the driver are rev-matching paddle shifts and precise gear changes as quick as 130 milliseconds at full throttle.

For driving convenience in Dynamic, Natural or All-weather modes, the Alfa Romeo TCT gearbox can utilize an “auto” mode.

Instantaneously optimizing the Alfa Romeo 4C Spider’s level of performance is the brand’s innovative Alfa DNA selector. With four modes, including “Race” mode, the Alfa DNA selector can optimize the engine, transmission, Alfa Electronic Q2 differential and electronic stability control (ESC) calibrations to the levels needed by the driver. With a touch of the Alfa DNA selector, the driving dynamics of the Alfa Romeo 4C Spider can be changed to (in order of increasing capability):

  • All-weather – designed to ensure maximum control in adverse weather conditions and enables gentler accelerator input and special engine and brake control logic to match road speed and prevent skidding
  • Natural – enables grand touring comfort and smooth drivability for the Alfa TCT gearbox 
  • Dynamic – enables improved driving performance via a more aggressive powertrain calibration and less intrusive ESC setting
  • Race – Available while in Dynamic mode, Race mode is the most extreme performance mode, putting the driver in total control of the car under race conditions. ESC and anti-slip regulation (ASR) are deactivated to allow the driver to control traction through the accelerator pedal. The Alfa Electronic Q2 differential control system remains active for fast exits out of corners or bends

In Race mode, launch control can be activated, allowing the Alfa Romeo 4C Spider to deliver 0-to-60 mph acceleration blasts as low as 4.1-seconds as soon as the driver releases the brake

The all-new Alfa Romeo 4C Spider adopts race-derived solutions to ensure maximum agility and road holding performance. The front suspension is comprised of a “superimposed” double wishbone configuration for direct and unfiltered feedback. At the rear, an advanced MacPherson suspension ensures superb road-holding attributes – even in the most extreme of maneuvers. Both front and rear suspensions are made from aluminum and high-strength steel. For the North American market, the Alfa Romeo 4C Spider is designed with stiffer springs, larger front- and rear-sway bars, and re-tuned shock absorbers.

For maximum handling performance, the all-new Alfa Romeo 4C Spider is available with the Track Package. This package includes high-performance shock absorbers with larger front- and rear-sway bars, larger and staggered fitting 18 x 7-inch (front) 19 x 8.5-inch (rear) forged-aluminum wheels with available Pirelli P-Zero “AR Racing” tires, performance flat-bottom steering wheel with microfiber inserts, carbon fiber exterior mirrors and carbon fiber gauge cluster bezel, plus the availability of Black leather performance seats with microfiber inserts and Red or Yellow accent stitching.

The Alfa Romeo 4C Spider combines two excellences – the racing and performance know how of Alfa Romeo engineering, plus the craftsmanship and manufacturing expertise of Maserati.

The very best technical and industrial expertise of the Alfa Romeo and Maserati brands were used to develop the 4C Coupe and all-new 4C Spider. Teamwork between the two brands included the integration of the Alfa Romeo Centro Stile with the well-known craftsmanship of the Maserati brand’s Modena workshop. In addition, the Alfa Romeo 4C Coupe and 4C Spider are boosted by the technological contributions of Italian suppliers, who are international leaders in manufacturing high-performance components.

This is a distinguishing trait of Alfa Romeo, a brand with a century of history that continues to be one of the most famous and popular ambassadors of Italian products around the world. 


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