Alfa Romeo is planning a barrage of new models that it hopes will lift sales in the same way that parent company Fiat Auto’s sales have upturned since the launch of the Grande Punto.The Italian premium car brand will strengthen its product range with cars as varied as open-top supercars and upmarket superminis over the next four years; you can see Alfa’s own sketches of the cars in question for the first time in our gallery.
Coming in 2009: Alfa Romeo 8C Competizione Spider
Alfa has announced that it will build a run of 8C Competizione Spiders to follow its rapid sell-out of Coupes, confirmation coming via a presentation to investors last week. The production run could be up to three times the size of the Coupe’s, at 1500, catering both to strong demand for the 8C, and the US market that Alfa is re-entering.The 8C Spider was unveiled last year as a running concept, and will go on sale in 2009; it’s mechanically identical to the coupe, minus the roof, with a 450bhp 4.7litre V8 engine.
Also in 2009: Alfa Romeo ‘Junior’
Preceding the open 8C will be Alfa’s new upmarket supermini and rival to the Mini. It’s been temporarily labelled Junior pending a public competition to find it a proper name, and is due to debut as a concept at the 2008 Geneva show before going on sale here in January 2009.The Junior’s core structure and mechanicals are shared with Fiat’s Grande Punto, but some suspension parts will come from the high-performance Punto Abarth. A unique option will be an adjustable suspension controlled by a Ferrari-style manettino. Engines will feature Fiat’s new Multiair inlet valve technology and will range from a 105bhp 1.4- through to a 230bhp 1.8-litre option for the Junior GTA. The illustration (see gallery) is official, and reveals the rear for the first time.
Alfa’s new 1-series-fighter: the 149
A year later, in 2010, the 147 replacement, codenamed ‘149’, arrives. It uses a largely new platform comprised of the centre section of the Bravo, and new front and rear structures to carry a very sophisticated suspension system rumoured to include active roll control. Safety will be significantly enhanced and the engine range, featuring Multiair and turbo motors, ranges from 120 to 260bhp. Two and four-wheel drive versions will be offered. The 149 will sit further upmarket than the 147, leaving room for the Junior beneath it. Expect prices to start at the £18k mark.