Is The Alfa Romeo LEA The Perfect Replacement For The 4C?
by Stephen Parry April 1 2019
Italian auto manufacturer Alfa Romeo unveiled their mid-engined, lightweight, rear-wheel drive sportscar, the 4C at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show. Production of the Alfa Romeo 4C began in May, 2013 at the Maserati assembly plant in Modena, Italy and at the start of the 4C’s production, Alfa Romeo estimated that they would produce around 2,500 4C’s every year depending on the quantity of carbon fiber chassis that could be provided by suppliers. Despite having very high hopes for the Alfa Romeo 4C, the lightweight sportscar hasn’t been the success story that Alfa Romeo wanted and many petrolheadspredicted, sad isn’t it?
However, this didn’t stop Alfa Romeo from adding to the 4C range and in 2014 at the Geneva Motor Show, the Italian auto manufacturer showed off a pre-production prototype of the Alfa Romeo 4C Spider. The Alfa Romeo 4C Spider is the drop-top version of the 4C Coupe, as a result the 4C Spider shares an engine with it’s Coupe sibling but it features a host of different external parts, which include different headlights, exhaust and engine cover, as well as a removable roof panel, obviously.
The Alfa Romeo 4C was not the best seller that Alfa Romeo were hoping for, and the same can be said about the Alfa Romeo 4C Spider. In fact in the United States Alfa Romeo sold and delivered just 238 Alfa Romeo 4C Spider’s throughout 2018 and in January, 2019 the Italian auto manufacturer sold and delivered just 7 units, which is roughly a forty-two percent drop when compared to January, 2018. The Alfa Romeo 4C has been with us for the last six years while the 4C Spider has been with us for the last five years, as a result the little Italian sports car is starting to show it’s age now and it is also starting to lose it’s edge against it’s newer rivals.
This got me thinking, is it the right time for Alfa Romeo to officially replace the little 4C? Recently we at Enzari were made aware of an absolutely breathtaking Alfa Romeo design study, which we think would be the perfect replacement for the aging Alfa Romeo 4C. This is it, what you are looking at ladies and gentlemen is the Alfa Romeo LEA (Linea Emozione Aerodinamica) and it is the work of Italian designer Luigi Memola, who just happens to be the head of London-based EPTA Design.
Although not a great deal of information has been made available regarding these sketches, I think it would be the perfect modern day Alfa Romeo sports car as it combines the perfect amount of future styling with retro styling from Alfa Romeo sports cars and racers of yesteryear. Just by looking at the images featured in this article, we can clearly see that the Alfa Romeo LEA draws it’s design inspiration from Alfa Romeo sports cars and racers of yesteryear.
As a result, the Alfa Romeo LEA features a stylish swept-back rear end and a low roofline, an old-school wraparound windshield which blends directly into the side glass, a long hood with a deep aerodynamic outlet, an old-school slated engine cover, a low-mounted Alfa Romeo shield grille, and fender-mounted side view wing mirrors. On a more modern note, the lower portions of the Alfa Romeo LEA is carbon fiber, the side view wing mirrors now house cameras rather than actual mirrors, while the “Ring” headlights and taillights are made up of the latest and greatest in LED lighting technology.
As the Alfa Romeo LEA is just a design study at this stage no interior pictures were made available to us and as expected, no official technical details have been made available either. However, just by looking at the Alfa Romeo LEA, it seems to feature a mid-engine layout and I just happen to have the perfect powertrain in mind. Yes, the 2.9-litre, twin-turbocharged Ferrari derived V6 engine which powers the Alfa Romeo Giulia QV and Stelvio QV. After all, this powertrain does deliver an impressive 503 hp and 443 lb-ft of torque, which should be more than enough power provided the overall weight of the Alfa Romeo LEA is kept to a minimum.
However, a breathtakingly beautiful design study like the Alfa Romeo LEA is not about performance but it is all about design, and the Alfa Romeo LEA has to be one of the best designs that we have seen recently. As mentioned earlier in this article, the Alfa Romeo LEA is just a design study at this stage and we hate to say it, but we highly doubt that Alfa Romeo will put the beautiful LEA into production. However, not all hope is lost because one of the worlds billionaires may see these designs and bring the Alfa Romeo LEA to life one day, hopefully soon that is.
Steve & Chris Parry are contributors from stevespeedza.blogspot.comhttps://enzari.com/2019/04/is-the-alfa-romeo-lea-the-perfect-replacement-for-the-4c/