Alfa Romeo Disco Volante by Touring Superleggera pictures and hands-on
Do you have a Alfa Romeo 8C Competizione coupé that you just don't like the look of? Do you want to dump a whole heap of cash on giving it a complete remodelling? Then the Alfa Romeo Disco Volante is possibly the car for you.
Alfa Romeo has given its approval for the Disco Volante to go into extremely limited production, with coachbuilder Touring Superleggera creating the 2013 model, celebrating the 60th birthday of the original Alfa Romeo 1900 C52 Disco Volante.
This isn't just a case of putting in an order. You'll have to have the Alfa Romeo 8C Competitizone in the first place and seeing as there are only 500 8C's out there, this Disco Volante is going to be a rare beast indeed. There's no real price set on this conversion task, which will take 4,000 man hours over six months to complete, but the gossip at the London reveal was around a cool half-million all in. That's the £120,000 you've already spent on the 8C, and the rest going to Touring Superleggera.
But in return, you get a Grand Turismo car that's built on demand for you. It sits on the running gear of the 8C Competizione, with its 4.7-litre V8 up front powering the rear wheels. It's reporting stats of 0-62 in 4.4 seconds and a top speed of 180mph.
Sure, you have plenty of options in this price range - and for much less - that will give you better performance, but the Alfa Romeo Disco Volante is going to be very rare, so you're unlikely to find yourself parked next to another in Sainsbury's car park. We've been told that only eight are going to be made.
The Disco Volante reflects the lines of the original 1952 model, with the long and wide front hinting at classic sports cars of the past. The way the wings cover the tops of front wheels might remind you of the Fiat Coupé, but from the front, this car is a stunner, the sort of thing you want to see racing towards you in the rear-view mirror.
Around the back, however, the Disco Volante is a different beast. The squared rear wheel arches add muscle, the huge exhaust pipes give it excitement.
Inside it's a luscious blend of carbonfibre and leather, with red highlights colour-matched to the fiery exterior. The Disco Volante name is highlighted in the seats, which are surprisingly comfortable. We also love the glass roof, it brings light into the cabin of this two-seater and there's plenty of interesting detail, like the chunky leather straps behind the seats to retain your luggage.
This is a wonderful car to behold, it's distinctly Alfa and distinctly different. But given that it's a rare conversion of a rare model, it's unlikely you'll ever set your eyes on it.