Fiat Chrysler Automobiles this month made some unexpected news, promising a return of the Alfa Romeo 8C in the form of a 700-hp, all-wheel-drive, midengine and electrified coupe.
The previous 8C was offered in a handful of dealerships when Alfa Romeo "returned" to the U.S. 10 years ago with a single model. That model was the 8C Competizione, which arrived when exotic cars were not exactly booming in the U.S.
The new one will be a halo model that will debut alongside a new 600-hp-plus GTV coupe.
For the 8C, FCA mentioned an electrified front axle helping a biturbo gasoline engine, and a 0 to 62 mph sprint time of less than three seconds. FCA also shared a silhouetted rendering of the car.
The 8C nameplate dates to the 1930s, and its name was originally used to denote a straight-eight engine layout. In 1931, the first production examples were built with a 2.3-liter straight-eight configuration. These cars, never produced in great numbers, quickly established themselves in racing.
Alfa Romeo turned its attention to luxury cars later in the decade, but the war effectively ended the lineage.
The 8C nameplate returned decades later, after a concept at the 2003 Frankfurt auto show previewed the model that followed four years later, powered by a 4.7-liter V-8. The 8C Competizione featured a carbon-fiber body over a steel chassis — with a production run of just 500 cars. The next 8C sounds like it will have more than 500 built.