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Discussion Starter #1
Right so like many of you I have been fantasising about a 4C to replace the Brera as a track day car. Thing is, the 4C is likely to be really quite pricey and we have lots of things to spend that kind of money on - I need a faster motorbike for commuting when we move house, and the wife may go on a lengthy maternity leave at some point that will need funding.

My Brera 2.2 now does naff all miles, maybe 1000-2000 a year, basically motorway journeys, Alfa runs and track half-days. It's not the family car, it's a fun car. It's already got mods on it, runs great, about 205bhp actual. So I'm thinking, maybe I should supercharge it and add a Q2 diff instead of saving up for a 4C?

What are the pros and cons do you think? My thoughts:

Handling: Brera 2.2 cornering is great, but it is front wheel drive whilst the 4C rear wheel drive. I don't have any track experience on rear wheel drive, I'd probably feel safer with front wheel drive - though i could learn, and the 4C is mid-rear engined which would help.

Superchargers are fun but inefficient - fuel cost would go up. I suppose this doesn't really matter for a track car. 4C would of course be more efficient, being lighter.

Practicality - this isn't a big concern for a fun car, but the reality is I can still do a lot of practical stuff with the Brera when the family car is not available - dog goes in the back, baby seat fits in the back, boot is massive.

Reliability - hmm presumably this will deteriorate if the Brera is supercharged, but superchargers probably won't wreck the transmission and conrods as quickly as a turbo. Plus it's a very low mileage car, so the engine could conceivably last longer than the rest of the car! Any one know what happened to the Autodelta 159 2.2SC? Is it alive or has it mysteriously dissapeared into the ether?

Cost - obviously a 4C costs about seven times as much as supercharging a Brera...

Finally, which is going to be faster? A 4C or a fully modded Brera 2.2SC with Q2, uprated clutch, remap and Vortex exhaust?
 

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Oooh.... :D

4C will obviously be the most interesting... since it's new, it has the RWD doodah and it's made of carbon and old stealth fighter aeroplanes.

The Brera is the most logical choice given the cost of the 4C and the bang-per-buck. A rooty-tootie-super-charge job would make it theoretically more competetive against the mythical 4C and the £ cost given the amount of times you actually use it (and the performance differential between the Brera and the 4C when you do), would put Brera ahead.

But the 4C is new, limited edition and will be like going out with a lingerie model after a few years with a wife.. :lol: It's probably not the best idea you ever had but .. when you're an old fella on your death-bed, you will certainly pause and re-wind that bit a few times before you shuffle away... :)

Keep it a year or two and then re-sell it. 4C looks like it'll hold its value so it'll cost almost nothing .. (if you really do want me to justify it to you head rather than your trousers... :D)


Ralf S.
 
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Supercharging a 2.2 seems like a waste of money to me. Either trade up to a 3.2 or save your money for the 4C. Supercharging is high risk (seen a lot go bang) and you are starting with a compromise engine.

Cheers,

Nigel
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Hmm interesting point about the reliability Nigel. I don't think I'd go for a 3.2 Brera due to the weight, effects on cornering, tax etc, plus according to the official stats there's only 1.5 seconds in the 0-60 times in the unmodded cars, so even in a straight line I'm not sure an unmodded 3.2 would have that much over my current car... so I'd be back onto the mod pathway pretty soon. Besides, selling my Brera for another one would feel a bit like cheating on my wife...

Well I have to say that if there's a good chance it's going to go pop then maybe I should save up til 2014/2015 and get one. Maybe get a second hand motorbike instead of a new one to save some cash...
 
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One of the key issues here CF is that any money you put into the Brera now is dead money. You'll see no return on it and yet you'll have to pay more insurance, extra fuel costs etc etc. In truth you may even find that it becomes harder to sell and that it commands a lower value than a standard car when resale time comes around.

For track fun no matter what you do to your Brera I'm afraid it's never going to compare a a well sorted RWD car and that sounds very much like what the 4C is going to be when it sees the light of day. I suspect that even in its lowest engine trim given the projected weight and balance on a point to point (rather than drag race) basis it's going to be noticeably quicker than any form of modded 2.2 and more than likely a 3.2 too.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Yes good points there RSK, though I'm not worried about money spent on the 2.2 being "dead" money because the amounts concerned are a small fraction of the cost of buying a 4C... but you have a good point about the 4C simply being outright better out of the box. Of course, the 4C being "better" out of the box relies upon:

- weight staying very low (kind of hard to believe);
- price being affordable (kind of hard to believe if weight really does stay low); and
- power delivery being acceptable. TBH I'm not sure at all that I'd be happy with a 1750Tbi - the peak torque comes in way too low... for me, red lining a natural aspirated petrol engine is one of the great pleasures in life.... you should hear my motorbike bouncing off the rev limiter, it sounds terrific ;)
 
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yep good points all CF regarding proposed vs actual specs.

But you'd be kicking yourself if you took option a and then by whatever stroke of fate option b a few months later was a 4C which managed to live up to all the hype....... ;)
 
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Sounds to me like you're trying to justify the 2.2 as a "good" engine choice by trying to give it the performance it is sadly lacking. The 3.2 already has 70+ hp and 50+ ft lb of torque over the 2.2, just get a 3.2 and map it, put a few other mods on and you will have a better and more sorted car IMO that will have a better resale value. There's probably very little knowledge in supercharging a 2.2, so that would be a risky bet IMO and wouldn't add to the resale value of the car. Can't see you would add a lot more over what you get with a 3.2 through supercharging, although I agree it will be a bit lighter. And surely redlining a 3.2 V6 would be more fun that redlining a supercharged 2.2 four pot.........?

The 4C will be the best modern Alfa for a long time, I will admit to it even being (a lot) better than the 156 GTA. Don't forget they are talking about a new 300hp engine and they are pretty certain the 4C will weigh no more than 900kg. If you can live with a 2 seater (and you can cos you have a Brera!), you would be mad not to consider the 4C. Target price at present is around Eur 45,000, although we will have to wait and see.

My advice - save your money, enjoy the Brera as is and then get a 4C. The Brera won't turn heads any more once that is out!

Cheers,

Nigel
 
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Do it.

The 4C may never arrive and if/when it does it'll be over-priced. (I reckon +50 grand.)

It ain't that pretty or practical as an every-day drive either.



Alternatively what about a Lotus Evora?




(Still nothing on the market that matches the Brera though. Which is shocking for a 6 year old design.)
 

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What's the betting that the 4c will be a front engined diesel wrapped in a steel body:lol:
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Very interesting opinions guys, and the views on each side of the argument show just how difficult a choice this is to make. Both routes have pros and cons.

The Brera could go pop if supercharged.

The 4C suffers from great uncertainty. It could cost 50K, it could weigh 1200Kg.

Nige, very much appreciate your comments about the 3.2 and it makes sense on some levels, but there is a very large weight difference between the Brera 2.2 and 3.2 - about 150Kgs, a lot of it in the nose. That's not a direction I want to go down as the 2.2 is well balanced.

Ultimately I'm leaning toward waiting for concrete info on the 4C production model to appear, then making a decision. My Brera will be at least 6 years old by the time the 4C appears. If the 4C turns out to be an expensive, heavy, lump, I'll be inclined to supercharge the Brera and perhaps not be overly worried if a car I've had the use of for 6 years explodes. Could always drop a recon engine in if it does go bang, should be a few spare engines around by then... maybe a 1750Tbi coupled with my vortex exhaust :cool:

I have to say, one thing counting against the 4C is I'm not sure it's as pretty as the Brera. People seem to indicate it's prettier in the metal than in the photos, is this correct?
 

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For me, I would choose the 3.2 Brera. They are cheap enough now and you have plenty of potential to mod it further if you want. No doubt there would be a queue of AO-ers wanting your 2.2 and you then have plenty of time to save for the 4C when she eventually arrives.
 
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