2008 Alfa Romeo 8C Competizione

Mike Maez, courtesy of Gooding & Company

In late 2003, Alfa Romeo was preparing a return to the North American market, and it needed a flagship car to remind buyers of the Italian automaker’s glorious past. That September at the Frankfurt Auto Show, the world was shown the dramatic re-emergence of Alfa Romeo as one of the great automotive sporting marques with the reveal of the 8C Competizione concept car.

Little had changed on the stunning 8C Competizione when it was approved for a limited production run of 500 units that began in the 2007 model year. Of those, just 84 were destined for U.S. shores, and most were pre-sold through Maserati dealerships well in advance of the cars’ delivery.

The 8C Competizione was named to evoke memories of Alfa’s dominant pre-war race cars, as well as the Juan Manuel Fangio-driven 1949 6C 2500 Competizione, from which it takes many of its styling cues.

Created by Wolfgang Egger at Centro Stile Alfa Romeo, the design incorporates evocative themes of arching fenders, a plunging rear-roofline, and a grille that are unmistakably Alfa.

A modern coachbuilt sports car, the 8C features a carbon-fiber body formed by the Italian firm ATR Group. The chassis is a hybrid Maserati platform, using Gran Turismo A-arms and a custom suspension. The F430-derived, 4.7-liter DOHC V8 engine was assembled by Ferrari.

Final construction took place at Maserati’s historic Viale Ciro Menotti factory in Modena, with each example personally vetted by Alfa factory test drivers in the nearby hills around the Italian city.

Reported performance figures were impressive. The specially tuned V8 produces 444 bhp at 7,000 rpm with 354 lb-ft of torque at 4,500 rpm, with 0–60 mph times of 4.2 seconds and a standing quarter-mile time of 12.4 seconds.

Power is transmitted via a rear-mounted, 6-speed, paddle-shift transaxle for an ideal weight balance. Top speed is conservatively listed at 181 mph, although Alfa engineers have publicly acknowledged its true terminal velocity is higher.

The reception from the motoring press was effusive, with Car and Driver magazine stating, “The 8C just might be the ultimate two-seat GT.”

The example offered here is a rare U.S.-delivery car finished in desirable Rosso Alfa with a tan interior. Showing less than 2,900 miles at cataloguing, the consignor states that it is in like-new condition. Previously the personal property of a Ferrari/Maserati dealer in Hinsdale, IL, it was the beneficiary of certified factory service throughout its early life. The car has since led a pampered existence with its third owner’s collection of exotics in the Southeastern United States.

With stunning looks, sophisticated interior and outstanding performance, this U.S.-market Alfa Romeo 8C Competizione coupe is as important an opportunity now as it was upon its much-anticipated initial release.