Alfa Romeo 4C prototype spotted

A prototype of the long awaited Alfa Romeo 4C sports car has been spotted while testing in Italy.
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The 4C will mark the return of the Fiat-Chrysler-owned Alfa Romeo brand to the US after originally pulling out of the market in 1995 due to falling sales and reliability issues.

A 1.75-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine mounted in the rear and driving the rear wheels will power the Maserati-built 4C with power rumoured to be up to 225kW.

Indications suggest the lightweight Alfa Romeo 4C (it is said to weigh as little as 900kg) will launch in the US in 2013, but specific timing remains unconfirmed at this stage.

The Alfa Romeo 4C will be pitched at the premium sports section of the roadster market, targeting the likes of the BMW Z4, Mercedes-Benz SLK and the Porsche Boxster.

Alfa Romeo will follow up the US launch of the 4C with the Giulia sedan and wagon in 2014, while a return of the Alfa Romeo Spider nameplate in 2015 is also a possibility, with the manufacturer committed to producing a new sports car built on a platform shared with the next-generation Mazda MX-5.