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Clear your bedroom walls: it’s the Alfa Disco Volante Spyder
Sister to stunning Touring Superleggera causes sudden Geneva meltdown
You can’t fault Italian coachbuilders Touring Superleggera for ballsy confidence. Not content with the challenge of rebodying the impeccably stunning Alfa Romeo 8C, successfully resulting in the even more striking and outlandish Disco Volante, Touring has applied its expert hand to a roofless Spyder version. The results are, predictably, hand-gnawingly gorgeous.
Based on the Alfa Romeo 8C Spider, the Disco Volante Spyder is really a targa, using two lift-out carbon fibre roof sections that live under the car’s enormous real clamshell when the sun’s out. There’s a 400-litre boot under there. Take that, practical hatchbacks!
Obviously there’s no heavy automatic mechanism to take care of stowing the roof, but given each panel only weighs in at 3.5kg, the seven lucky well-heeled types who will get to own one of these V8-powered sculptures can probably manage the pre-suntan manual labour.
Ah yes, the V8. Numbers are hardly the Disco’s forte – it’s more of a museum piece than a track day hack – but if you can’t do without the vital stats, the Spyder musters 444bhp from its Maserati-derived 4.7-litre V8, which arrives at the rear wheels, along with 354lb ft on torque, via a rear-mounted six-speed sequential automatic. All fairly familiar numbers, given it’s the mechanical package from the lovely Alfa 8C.
Meanwhile, the performance matches the Alfa that just anyone (alright, rich anyones) could go and snap up for around £174,000 back in 2008. The Disco Spyder (which sounds like the villain from a John Travolta dance classic) runs to 62mph in 4.5 seconds, and will top 180mph. Brisk enough, then.
On the way, Touring claims you won’t actually go deaf from the wind roaring overhead. Yes, some very stylish Italian maths and science has resulted in a claimed noise level of 24-50 decibels when cruising at a steady, safe, um, 112mph. Never change, Italy.
And if you’re assuming no-one will ever drive the Spyder that quick, Touring is rather insistent there’ll be rewards in the handling department if you did. The bespoke carbon windscreen surround and roll bars have been computer-rendered with the input of Alfa Romeo, so they compliment the car’s torsional rigidity and actually lower the centre of gravity versus the hard-top Disco Volante.
Much of the car uses carbon panels bonded to the original 8C’s steel spaceframe for a healthy mix of unbendable stiffness and low weight. Meanwhile, aluminium sections for the doors, wings and so on are hand-beaten before being mated with the chassis. You might not like the fact an 8C has to die to create a Disco, but you can’t fault the attention to detail.
Touring hasn’t officially announced what the Spyder costs, but bearing in mind you’ll need an 8C Spider donor car to start with, and the entire build takes up to six months, you won’t be getting much change from a quarter of a million. Or perhaps half. Look, it’s expensive. But can you put a price on pucker Italian craftsmanship and open-top V8 bellow?