Stunning new sports cars get their tops off

Last updated 06:25 07/03/2014
Girls of the 2014 Geneva Auto Show.
Girls of the 2014 Geneva Auto Show.
New McLaren supercar, the MP4-12C 650S.
New McLaren supercar, the MP4-12C 650S.
Alfa Romeo 4C launch edition.
Alfa Romeo 4C launch edition.

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Alfa Romeo and McLaren have popped the tops off their newest sports cars.

Spider versions of the Alfa Romeo 4C and McLaren's new 650S went on display at the Geneva Motor Show this week.

The topless Italian beauty combines a removable hardtop and a performance that is close to the solid top version with a 0-100kmh time of 4.5 seconds and a top speed in excess of 250 kmh.

It is said to weigh just 60kg more than the solid roof version. Instead of a tin top, the Spider has been equipped with rollover bars, spoilers and windshield frame all made of carbon-fibre along with a lightweight canvas top.

The 4C Spider is powered by Alfa's new four-cylinder, all-aluminium, 1.75-litre turbocharged petrol engine, which drives the rear wheels via a six-speed, dual dry-clutch Alfa TCT transmission

Meanwhile, McLaren's 650S Spider surprised many at Geneva.

While the appearance of the 650S coupe was expected after pictures leaked on the internet last month, the appearance of the Spider version alongside at the unveiling was a well kept secret.

The 650S Spider, presented in a new version of the company's signature orange, comes with the same 3.8-litre twin-turbo V8 of the coupe, making a matching 650 PS and identical 0-100 kmh times - 3.0-seconds – as the coupe. It also reaches 200 kmh in 8.6 seconds which is just 0.2secs slower than the fixed-roof model and has a top speed of 329 kmh. Fuel consumption is rated at 11.7 litres per 100km.

The overall weight of the 650S Spider is 1370 kg (dry), an increase of only 40kg over the Coupe and its roof drops in 17 seconds and can be retracted or closed at speeds of up to 30 kmh.

As with McLaren's 12C Spider, the 650S Spider uses a heated glass rear window, operating independently of the roof. With the roof down, the rear window acts as a wind deflector. Roof up, the rear screen can be lowered to allow more engine noise – and driving drama – into the cabin.

Rather than being a stripped out road racer, the 650S Coupe and 650 Spider models are fitted with a high level of luxury equipment as standard. Carbon ceramic brakes sit behind unique ''650'' lightweight alloy wheels shod with Pirelli P Zero Corsa tyres, IRIS satellite navigation with Bluetooth telephony, wireless tethering, audio streaming and voice control are all fitted as standard, and the cabin is fully trimmed in Alcantara.

The 650S Spider, like the coupe, takes many design cues from the company’s P1 supercar.

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