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Alfa Romeo 4C Spider here in November

Christmas steer: A few lucky Australians can look forward to unwrapping their Alfa Romeo 4C Spider this summer.

Order books open, supply lines relatively free for Alfa Romeo 4C Spider convertible


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22 Jun 2015

THE Alfa Romeo 4C Spider will hit Australian showrooms in November, slightly earlier than expected and placing it firmly on the Christmas wish-lists of local Alfisti and performance-car fans alike.

Order books are open but no pricing has yet been confirmed, although an indicator could come from Britain where the Spider carries a 15 per cent premium over the coupe and would equate to an Australian opening price of around $102,500 plus on-road costs (the coupe is priced from $89,000 plus on-roads).

Australian allocations of the 4C coupe for 2015 are sold out – including 75 of the 1000 Launch Editions built for worldwide consumption – and while its hand-built nature ensures it will remain supply constrained well into next year, GoAuto understands local waiting lists have shortened and that early availability of the Spider will be freer than it was for the coupe.

Replacing the hard-top with a roll-up removable panel that can be stowed behind the seats has added around 10kg to the total weight of Alfa’s lightweight sportscar, which in safety conscious Australian spec arrived in February tipping the scales at 1025kg in coupe form.

The minimal weight gain means the lack of a solid roof should have little or no impact on the 4C’s claimed 0-100km/h sprint time of 4.5 seconds, while the quoted 257km/h top speed matches that of the coupe.

Like the coupe, the 4C Spider packs a highly strung, mid-mounted 1742cc petrol engine with a turbocharger and high-pressure direct injection force-feeding the four cylinders to deliver 176kW of peak power and 350Nm of torque to the rear wheels through a six-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission with paddle-shifters.

It is all underpinned by almost completely carbon-fibre monocoque chassis and body construction – helping achieve 1.1g of lateral acceleration through corners and 1.57g under braking – while those wanting even more carbon on their Spider can specify the optional removable carbon-fibre hardtop.

Another option will be an Akrapovic sports exhaust for a sportier note and centrally located tailpipes that make 4C Spider more closely resemble the concept unveiled at the 2014 Geneva motor show.

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles Australia president and CEO Pat Dougherty described the 4C Spider as “a true convertible supercar” and unrivalled for open-topped thrills.

Indeed the 4C has few competitors, with the ageing and manual-only Lotus Elise from $74,990 and entry to Porsche’s Boxster range at $102,800.

“The all-new 4C Spider builds on Alfa Romeo’s proud heritage of motorsport success and cutting-edge technology, offering an open-air driving experience that is pure excitement,” said Mr Dougherty.

With 102 4C coupes sold in Australia so far this year to the end of May, Alfa Romeo’s flagship model is out-selling the entry level Mito light hatch, of which just 77 reached customers year-to-date.

Global FCA chairman and CEO Sergio Marchionne is preparing to unveil the next all-new Alfa Romeo model on Wednesday this week – expected to be a rear-drive sports sedan called Giulia – to kick off a product roll-out plan that promises to spawn new metal every six to nine months for the next three years.

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