Why the Alfa Romeo 4C is the Top Baby Supercar of 2016 video

DAVID LINKLATER/FAIRFAX NZ

The Alfa Romeo 4C is our Top Baby Supercar of 2016.

A baby supercar? Seriously?

Yes! The beauty of the Alfa Romeo 4C is that's exactly what it is, in design, engineering and driving dynamics.

You can see the supercar-style for yourself - shapes that are also functional because the 4C's body was created in a wind tunnel.

Alfa's rare 4C is like a scale-model supercar: low, made from exotic materials and oh-so-exciting.
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Alfa's rare 4C is like a scale-model supercar: low, made from exotic materials and oh-so-exciting.

Underneath, the 4C is built around a carbon-fibre tub, with a mid-mounted 1.8-litre turbo engine that screams and clatters. There's no power steering and the rigid chassis is really only at home on roads that are completely smooth (some might call them racetracks).

Click here for more of Our Top 2016 Cars

 
Serious rather than swish: racing-style dashboard and lots of exposed carbon fibre in cabin.
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Serious rather than swish: racing-style dashboard and lots of exposed carbon fibre in cabin.

It's absolutely tiny: about the same length as a Toyota Yaris. You sit just centimetres off the ground, legs outstretched, surrounded by the exposed carbon-fibre structure. The cabin architecture is elegant, but it's far from luxurious. You just get the basics, with the emphasis on the racing-style central digital display.

Want more? You can option-up the Racing Pack, which brings stiffer suspension, an uprated (read even louder) exhaust and upsized wheels on mixed Pirelli track-focused tyres.

If all of this sounds like hard work - well, it is. But that's why we love the 4C. It's a no-compromise enthusiast-car and if you don't go out to drive it hard, you'd best leave it at home. 

Turbocharged engine is right behind your ears. You can tell.
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Turbocharged engine is right behind your ears. You can tell.

The 4C is an indulgence, for sure - both for Alfa Romeo and any owner. But that's also what makes it so wonderful. It's a pure sports, sorry baby-supercar that's designed solely for that exhilarating Sunday-morning drive or track day.

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If you want a car to show off in on the commute to work or take the kids to school, then get something else.

Actually, scratch that bit about the school run. Kids love the 4C.

AT A GLANCE
Price range:
 $129,900 (coupe) to $139,900 (Launch Edition).
Powertrain: 1.8-litre turbo-petrol four with 177kW/350Nm, 6-speed automated dual-clutch gearbox, rear-drive
Fuel economy: 6.8 l/100km.

 - Stuff

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