Alfa Romeo 4C (2014 – 2019) Review

Alfa Romeo 4C (2014 – 2019) At A Glance

2/5

+Impressive performance from 1750 turbocharged engine. Exotic specification of carbon fibre tub construction. Good looks and rarity.

-Engine sounds terrible. Interior lacks quality for something costing £45,000. Heinously over-active steering requires constant corrections.

On average it achieves 102% of the official MPG figure

The Alfa Romeo 4C is lightweight, mid engined, composite bodied sportscar that makes the most of a relatively small engine by its light weight and impeccable handling.

You could almost hear the collective intake of breath from Alfa Romeo fans worldwide when the 4C was first shown in 2011. Following the short-run, high-cost, if not fantastically received 8C Competizione, the 4C gave some hope to those seduced by the Italian brand that they might finally have something attainable worth saving for.

Forget sharp-looking Fiat-in-disguise models like the Giulietta and MiTo. The 4C is a proper, bespoke sports car, that’s lightweight and gorgeous - if you ignore the woeful Gary-from-Halfords-designed headlamps - mid-engined and rear-wheel drive. A proper sports car. And to many a proper Alfa.   

Much of the 4C’s appeal centres around its construction. It features a carbon fibre tub, which might not mean anything to you, but it’s what Formula One drivers sit in. Indeed, the only production cars to feature the same carbon fibre tub construction include the McLaren 650S, Lamborghini Aventador and a handful of other mega-money exotics and supercars. The 4C’s construction really does put it among some very rarefied machinery indeed.

In that company then the £45,000 Alfa Romeo asks for the 4C looks like something of a bargain. Making that price possible does mean that much of the parts hanging off that fancy carbon fibre tub are used elsewhere in the Alfa Romeo line-up, but the attention to detail remains impressive, regardless.

The mid-mounted engine, introduced with the 4C, is an aluminium 1750cc direct injection turbocharged unit, that lightweight build allowing it to drop some 22kg in weight over the same output and capacity engine in the Giulietta QV.

That dedication to weight reduction sees the 4C boast an unladen weight of 895kg, all of which means the 240PS and 350Nm of torque the 1750 turbocharged unit produces is put to very good use. Acelleration from 0-62mph arrives in just 4.5 seconds if you use the launch control, the 4C’s acceleration aided by the rapid shifts from the paddle-shifted automatic twin-clutch transmission.  

All that performance and lightweight does come with some compromises though. The 4C is a very single-minded machine, its focus on its featherweight build much in the same vein as the Lotus Elise, only here it’s arguably more compromised.

The cabin is tight, vision out of it heavily restricted and it’s pretty austere looking. But then the 4C isn’t likely to be bought with commuting and daily drives in mind, so such focus is entirely forgivable. And doubtless appealing to the sort of buyer looking for the sort of thrills the compact, lightweight two-seat 4C promises.

Real MPG average for a Alfa Romeo 4C (2014 – 2019)

RealMPG

Real MPG was created following thousands of readers telling us that their cars could not match the official figures.

Real MPG gives real world data from drivers like you to show how much fuel a vehicle really uses.

Average performance

102%

Real MPG

33–49 mpg

MPGs submitted

8

Diesel or petrol? If you're unsure whether to go for a petrol or diesel (or even an electric model if it's available), then you need our Petrol or Diesel? calculator. It does the maths on petrols, diesels and electric cars to show which is best suited to you.

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Will the Alfa Romeo 4C become a valuable classic?
"Will the Alfa 4C become a valuable classic?"
If we knew that, we'd also be picking our lottery numbers this week. Alfas often do well, thanks to their Italian heritage, gorgeous styling, fizzy engines and petrolhead enthusiast base. So, to answer your question, we'd say yes - the Alfa 4C has a pretty decent chance of becoming a classic. How much it might be worth one day and how soon it's star will rise is anyone's guess.
Answered by Keith Moody
Can you recommend a sporty estate for my wife's business and a mid-engined sports car for me?
"I have been struggling to find a balance of cars in our garage. Our current cars are a 12-year-old Range Rover converted to LPG and a modified 55 plate Audi S4 V8. The latter satisfies my need for speed and my part-time car touring business, but is mainly used by my wife for work (lucky girl). And we use the Range Rover for very rural living and driving in the Highlands, winter conditions and for towing a large trailer. I drive a small van otherwise. What we need is a more economical but sporty estate for my wife's business travel (about 18,000 a year) and I would like to buy a mid range, mid-engined sports car (Alfa 4C?) with hopefully some luggage space for the touring, and keep the Rangie for emergencies. I'm struggling with the estate I'm afraid and keep coming back to the S4, which I love to bits. Help."
For the wife, the recently facelifted SEAT Exeo ST 2.0 TDI CR 143 should do the business at around 50mpg. But don't bank on keeping it longer than three years and then you should avoid the problems that modern diesels start to develop. For you, difficult. No chance of an Alfa 4C without paying a ridiculous premium for being one of the first to get one. You might as well go for what it's copied from: an Elise / Vauxhall VX220, and I’ve seen a new Opel roadster being tested on the roads of Bavaria. If an Elise, make sure it has the Toyota Motor. Or follow Steven Sutcliffe and put your name down for a Ginetta G60 which he rates much more hard core than a Porsche Cayman R (see Autocar 26-10-2011).
Answered by Honest John

What does a Alfa Romeo 4C (2014 – 2019) cost?