Alright already. Yes, I'm an Alfisti. I fell in love with them driving a borrowed '81 Spider. Sure the shift throws were ridiculously long, and sure it only liked to start on warm dry days, but the engine sounds .... Who needed a radio?
Alfa Romeo abandoned ship here in the early 90's. The retreat was partly because the product's reliability was questionable and partly because Alfa never really took customer service and supplying parts seriously. But now Alfa's coming back, and this is their opening salvo:
It's the 8C Competitzione. It costs a quarter of a million dollars. It has a Ferrari-inspired F-1 paddle-shift transmission. Its body is carbon fiber, and it has a pushbutton starter. If you can afford it, fitted Schedoni luggage is an option. If you've got the nerve, it'll do 190 mph. And 0-60 takes 4.2 seconds.
And no, you can't have one. The initial and only production run sold out long ago ... 500 cars. Period. Only 90 will make it to the States. They're making 500 of the convertible version, but somehow it's not as sexy as the coupe. And it's probably sold out too. So tough shit.
So if bitten by the Alfa bug, what will the company permit you to buy? A few guesses:
This is the Alfa Romeo Brera. It's designed by Giugiaro. Here in George W. Bush's America you probably won't be able to get it with the 4-cylinder or available turbodiesel, just a V6. But that's no reason to dismiss it. It's sure to be a blast to drive. One thing that's certain to come here?
The Spider is a sure seller. As for a 4-door?
Maybe ... Here are the models on offer in Italy.