The Alfa Romeo 8C - A Future Classic
There are good looking cars, there are pretty cars, and then there are downright beautiful cars. A large percentage of the latter probably come from Italy, and we think you’ll agree that the Alfa Romeo 8C Competizione is no exception.
The 8C was created as a bit of a tribute to some of the great classic Alfas, and you may be surprised to know that it was actually designed by a German. Alfa nerds out there will see the headlights have been modelled over those you’d find on the 33 Stradale, the rear lights made to resemble those on a Giulia TZ, and the overall rear as a homage to the Giulietta SZ.
Much to purists pleasure, it was Alfa’s first return to a rear-axle mounted gearbox since the ‘90s after many years of subjectively sub-par front-wheel drive models. The heart of the 8C is a 4.7-litre V8 with a very familiar bark, and that’s because it’s a bored out and stroked version of the Ferrari-built Maserati V8.
This revised and upgraded engine was later used in versions of the Maserati Quattroporte and GranTurismo. It wasn’t breaking any records, but 450bhp to the rear wheels was more than enough to raise a pulse or two and it remains to be one of the finest V8s of all time.
Alfa’s model range was a mixed bag back when the 8C was put into production in 2006. The 159 and Brera looked fantastic but were lacking considerably compared to their rivals. Since then the company has had some success with the mid-engined 4C, the well-received Giulia and Stelvio Quadrifoglio SUV.
Truly great Alfas don’t come along often and it’s unclear as to when we’re due another. Add that to the current conversation around the environment, emissions, and EVs and you start to realise that a rear-wheel drive, naturally-aspirated V8 Alfa looks like the definition of a future classic.
The black-over-tan car pictured here, owned by co-founder of PaddlUp Joe, makes what is already a rare car even more exclusive. Alfa Romeo received over 1400 orders for the 8C, but the Milanese carmaker limited production to just 500, with a further 500 Spiders built later on. Only 40 of those coupes were supplied to the UK, and this is one of them.
From a driving point of view the 8C didn’t get the best response from the motoring press. Many complained it wasn’t that quick, it was impractical, the ride was harsh and that it didn’t even handle particularly well. Despite all of these things the 8C still captured the hearts of so many petrolheads the world over because of the way it looks and the way it sounds. For those reasons alone it will go down as one of Alfa’s all-time best cars.
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