17 March 2004

Alfa has opened up a near-showroom-ready version of the 8C Competizione, the retro-styled 400bhp coupé, which goes on sale late next year.

Now fully trimmed, the cockpit (right) is dominated by quality carbon fibre dash, doors and transmission tunnel.

Fitting with its retro theme, the 8C gets a conventional gearlever with clutch pedal, rather than Alfa's Selespeed paddle system. It's powered by a 4.3-litre Maserati-sourced V8 which should propel it to close to 200mph, and make it good for the 0-62mph dash in 4.5sec; enough to beat its in-house rival, the Maserati Coupe.

Adding to its sporting credentials will be a kerbweight of less than 1500kgs faciliated by a carbonfibre body, and double wishbone suspension front and rear. At 4278mm, it's considerably shorter than the benchmark Porsche 911, but offers a wheelbase which is some 245mm longer.

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