Back in the day, the Lancia Stratos was absolutely dominant in the international rally scene, winning three consecutive World Rally Championships in 1974, 1975, and 1976. It was one of the last successful RWD rally cars before the Audi Quattro introduced all-wheel grip to the scene in the early 80s, and it’s often lauded as one of the prettiest rally cars ever made. 

Nowadays, Lancia hasn’t exited from the sideways stuff completely, but has yet to recapture its former glory. As far as I’m concerned, all the marque needs is a hero car in line with the original Stratos.

It appears the folks at Boldride agree, and came up with this gorgeous rendering of a new-age Lancia based on the current Alfa Romeo 4C. Featuring the same mid-engine, RWD layout as the streetcar, it’s unlikely this thing would offer similar performance as a modern AWD rally racer, but who cares? If it came with that classic Alitalia racing livery draped over the iconic wedge design, I doubt you’d hear any complaints.

Boldride says the stock four-cylinder would probably get tossed in favor of a 350-horsepower V-6, something fans of the historical Stratos are sure to appreciate (not to mention anyone who likes more speed). Acceleration figures would clock in at 0-to-60 in around four seconds. The publication also says a manual transmission would be unlikely, given its absence in the 4C. 

One look at this thing is all the convincing I need. Add my name to the petition. 

Continue reading to learn more about the Alfa Romeo 4C.

Why it matters

Alfa Romeo 4C Rally Car? High Resolution Exterior
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For a time, Lancia was seen as a performance brand with all the right credentials. Now, it’s an oddity, an icon from the past that’s been collecting dust for decades. And with a sparkling history that dates all the way back to 1906, that’s sad to see.

Should the Italian automaker create something like this old-school revival before you, it would do wonders for its image. All that grainy footage available on YouTube would suddenly spring to life, and considering the current interest in rally, what with the WRC, GRC, and Ken Block shoe ads, now is the time to make it happen.

And while it’s true that the mid-mounted motor and RWD would make it technologically backward for the slippery stuff, I’m sure it would fit right in for tarmac events. Just imagine seeing a car like this tear up something like the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb — it’s enough to give me goose bumps.

Alfa Romeo 4C

2014 Alfa Romeo 4C High Resolution Exterior
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Low weight, great balance, and looks to kill – that was the formula Alfa employed when it decided to bring a sports car to the U.S., the first vehicle from the Italian marque to reach these shores since 2008. Inspired by a history of racing and sporting modern tech like aluminum and carbon fiber, it’s also simply one of the best-looking cars on the road.

Based on a carbon-fiber monocoque, the 4C weighs less than 2,000 pounds, 60 percent of which is saddled over the rear axle. Inside, there’s not much to distract passengers from the task at hand, with a flat-bottomed steering wheel, performance digital gauges, and very little sound deadening. Yeah, there’s some leather and a little infotainment, but overall, it’s pretty spartan.

Thanks to its incredibly low curb weight, a turbocharged four-cylinder engine under two liters of displacement is all that’s needed to propel this lithe little sports car. Output from the powerplant is rated at 240 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 258 pound-feet of torque between 2,100 and 4,000 rpm. Routed to the rear wheels through a dual-clutch six-speed automatic transmission (shame there’s no manual option), the 4C can hit 60 mph in four-and-a-half seconds and reach a top speed of 160 mph.

Most interesting, however, is the rear-biased handling characteristics offered by the high-double-wishbones up front and McPherson struts out back. When pushed, the Alfa will render over 1G of lateral acceleration, plus 1.25G in braking from 12-inch rotors up front and 11.5-inch rotors in back. Coming to a halt from 62 mph takes only 118 feet.

Pricing starts at $53,900.

Source: Boldride

Jonathan Lopez
Jonathan Lopez
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