Alfa Romeo’s decade of indecision is a distant memory with a new Alfa 8C and GTV on the way.
Sergio Marchionne, on his way to retirement as head of the gigantic Fiat Chrysler Automotive Group, laid out is five year plan on Friday. Electrification is top of the agenda, along with new cars from Maserati, Jeep and electrified Fiat 500s and Pandas. Diesel is on its deathbed at FCA and I’m not mourning it.
Along with the startling shift to all-electric for the Alfieri (replacing the GranTurismo), Alfa Romeo is doing a new 8C and GTV.
Back in 2007, Alfa Romeo dropped the 8C, an achingly pretty V8-powered sports coupe. It didn’t seem to matter that the rest of company was about to burn down – the 159 was about to die, the odd-looking MiTo was old before it released a year later and the Giulietta wasn’t going to sell very well. Alfa was in dire straits while management messed about deciding what to do next (hint, nothing until about 2014).
Now with the extraordinary Giulia (well, the QV is anyway) and acclaimed Stelvio under its belt, Marchionne says a new 8C is on the way.
As the picture says it will have a combined 515kW (700PS), a mid-mounted (Ferrari-supplied) twin-turbo V6 and the front wheels will have an electric motor. The sub three second 0-100km/h (0-62mph) time seems reasonable but I can’t help wondering if Ferrari are going to be too pleased about that.
The carbon fibre monocoque pushed my eyebrows skyward, suggesting this is going to be another low-volume special. The carbon-bodied, steel chassis 2007 8C and 8C Convertible sold exactly 500 units.
A subject dear to heart is the Alfa Romeo GTV. I owned a 1977 Alfetta GTV and I loved it and so did everyone else. Even though it was poo-brown (or “Eye of the Tiger” according to the brochure).
The GTV came back in the 90s as a…steady…front-wheel drive coupe. It looked pretty cool and had a Spider twin, but it was hardly a worthy successor to the gorgeous 105 of days gone by.
Alfa was less forthcoming about the GTV, but did say it would have over 440kW (600PS), torque-vectored all-wheel drive and seating for four. With any luck that means a front-engined twin-turbo V6 with electric boost. That kind of suggests the electric motor can’t run on its own, but it is a plug-in hybrid, so who knows.
The rendering, as with the 8C, is all we have to go by, but I’ll go out on a limb and say it’s basically a four-door Giulia.
In five years the cute-but-ancient MiTo will be gone, the Giulietta replaced and joined by what looks like a small SUV and Giula and Stelvio will also be replaced. It looks like the Stelvio will score a long wheelbase version, either for the Chinese market or to accomodate a third row. The E segment car looks like a bigger SUV, so that’s probably a spin-off from the Maserati Levante.
They’re all going to be electric, with six PHEVs, which mirrors what’s happening elsewhere in FCA.
I don’t know about you, but this all looks terrific.
Peter Anderson is the Editor and founder of the theredline.com.au. He’s been writing about cars for years and finds it difficult to talk about anything else.