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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hello everyone,

My name is Rudi and I come from Slovenia. I had a 98' BMW Z3M Coupe. I was driving trackdays, timeattacks, spirited street driving but every year I wanted more grip, more power and better lap times, so I've modded my car through the years to the point that it wasn't drivable on the road anymore, so I've started building a dedicated race car. So now after two years of building and preparing this car I've started to missing a proper sports car that could be driven also on a street, so much, that I've started looking for a proper replacement of my former BMW Z3M Coupe.

I was entirely sure that in a few years, I would buy a Porsche Cayman, but somehow Alfa Romeo 4C caught my attention in a way only BMW Z3M Coupe did before. I've started reading all the reviews and technical specifications of the car and more I read about the more I liked it regardless of all the flaws people were talking about.

From pure curiosity I went to a local dealer to see 718 Cayman, but I just didn't feel any emotions about this car, so I left quickly. Later that day I went to Alfa Romeo dealer who had brand new 4C standing in a showroom apparently for quite some time now. The moment I stepped into the showroom and I saw 4C in person I was stunned. Car was a "killer". Low, wide, shiny red color with nice 19'' OEM wheels, yellow Brembo calipers and beautiful shaped body curves. It was nothing like I've ever seen before. I got behind the dashboard and it felt so right. It was love at first sight. I had some conversation with salesman to get the details I wanted and went back home.

I spent next week calculating my finances and all the rational thoughts were killing me, but I wanted the car so bad that I couldn't resist anymore. Long story short. I've started negotiating and after a restless week my brand new Alfa Romeo 4C was home. So here it is. I enjoy it every time I look at it, wash it, drive it. That's it for now. Here is a picture of my race car BMW Z3M Coupe and picture of my new 4C. More to follow...
 

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Congrats and welcome to the family!!!

Nice story, nice M car too.

Like most of us, it sounds like your 4C purchase was an affair of the heart, and not necessarily the head. That's the way it is supposed to be with these cars. And the good news is that the love affair doesn't end with the engagement!

So, enjoy the car, and your time on the forum when you're not behind the wheel. Tell us all about your experiences together.


BTW, your post was late showing up because the forum software automatically flagged it for moderation. Probably just the photos (thanks for those). It may happen again for your next few posts, but I'll watch for it and approve things as I see them. Feel free to PM me if you have any problems. After about 5 posts, everything becomes easier.
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
As expected car was tramlining quite bad, so I did wheel alignment.

Before:

Front:
  • Camber: -1*04' and -0*52'
  • Caster: +2*09' and +2*02'
  • Toe: -0*12' and -0*09'
Rear:
  • Camber: -1*52' and -1*55'
  • Toe: +0*17' and +0*12'
After:

Front:
  • Camber: -1*05' and -0*51'
  • Caster: +2*09' and +2*02'
  • Toe: -0*04' and -0*04'
Rear:
  • Camber: -1*52' and -2*04'
  • Toe: +0*20' and +0*20'
Now conclusion is that this was a brand new car but alignment was quite out of specs, so it drove bad. There was too much front toe out. I reduced by more than half and turn in response is just as good as it was. No need to run more than about -0*5' toe out for good turn in response, but I would appreciate about -1*30' front camber for better midcorner grip and at least +4*0' of caster for straight line stability. I suggest everyone who didn't had alignment done yet, that they should do it. This is the cheapest and best mod you can do.

I'm still not happy with the results so I'm waiting for adjustment blocks to arrive for the front end, so I'll be able to add more caster which shall significantly improve tramlining. I'm also planing to run wider and stickier tires so a bit more front camber will be added.

That's it for now. I'm planing to go for a local time attack event this weekend, to see how car performs in comparison with my old BMW Z3M Coupe.
 

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I have a BMW M Roadster and I'm thinking of adding a 4C coupe to my garage. We are kind of in the same boat. I tried to love the Porsche but I just did not. I also do not like that there are so many Porsches on the road. I think having a 4C would be a lot more unique.
 

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I have a BMW M Roadster and I'm thinking of adding a 4C coupe to my garage. We are kind of in the same boat. I tried to love the Porsche but I just did not. I also do not like that there are so many Porsches on the road. I think having a 4C would be a lot more unique.
The 4C "head turning" power is up there with the best of them. People will look at a nice Porsche or BMW on the road .... but the 4C will make them say "Wow". It definitely has the WOW factor. :surprise::heart::heart::heart::grin2:
 

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The 4C "head turning" power is up there with the best of them. People will look at a nice Porsche or BMW on the road .... but the 4C will make them say "Wow". It definitely has the WOW factor. :surprise::heart::heart::heart::grin2:
That is exactly how I feel. I like having something unique. The Porsche is a great car but not as unique. I have not driven a 4C yet. I have to see if it can be driven 400 miles a month comfortably.
 

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Love the yellow calipers with the red, kinda wish mine had yellow now. Love those headlights too...North America does not get those beauties. Good luck and enjoy.
 

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Welcome :)
Congrats :grin2:

Oh yeah, you're going to love your 4C.

I've got a 240z I track and I daily my 4C.
 

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Congrats on your new toy. You will have to get the 4C on the track, it is quite enjoyable to do!
 

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As expected car was tramlining quite bad, so I did wheel alignment.

Before:

Front:
  • Camber: -1*04' and -0*52'
  • Caster: +2*09' and +2*02'
  • Toe: -0*12' and -0*09'
Rear:
  • Camber: -1*52' and -1*55'
  • Toe: +0*17' and +0*12'
After:

Front:
  • Camber: -1*05' and -0*51'
  • Caster: +2*09' and +2*02'
  • Toe: -0*04' and -0*04'
Rear:
  • Camber: -1*52' and -2*04'
  • Toe: +0*20' and +0*20'
Now conclusion is that this was a brand new car but alignment was quite out of specs, so it drove bad. There was too much front toe out. I reduced by more than half and turn in response is just as good as it was. No need to run more than about -0*5' toe out for good turn in response, but I would appreciate about -1*30' front camber for better midcorner grip and at least +4*0' of caster for straight line stability. I suggest everyone who didn't had alignment done yet, that they should do it. This is the cheapest and best mod you can do.

I'm still not happy with the results so I'm waiting for adjustment blocks to arrive for the front end, so I'll be able to add more caster which shall significantly improve tramlining. I'm also planing to run wider and stickier tires so a bit more front camber will be added.

That's it for now. I'm planing to go for a local time attack event this weekend, to see how car performs in comparison with my old BMW Z3M Coupe.
Sorry - this got stuck in moderation too.
So I don't think that others got to see it (and now it's a page back).

Agree totally with the alignment recommendation.
Which blocks did you order?

Let us know your impressions on the track! Very interested to hear how you feel the cars compare.
 

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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
Hello,

Did the alignment yesterday after work. I took me about 4h to get blocks and shims installed and matched to get proper camber and caster.

I have installed "race" version of Jamie's blocks.

Before:

Front:
Camber: -1*05' and -0*51'
Caster: +2*09' and +2*02'
Toe: -0*04' and -0*04'

Rear:
Camber: -1*52' and -2*04'
Toe: +0*20' and +0*20'

After:

Front:
Camber: -1*43' and -1*31'
Caster: +4*28' and +4*08'
Toe: -0*04' and -0*04'

Rear:
Camber: -1*52' and -1*59'
Toe: +0*20' and +0*20'

In stock configuration I had 4x1mm shim under each left, lower wishbone and 3x1mm shim under each right, lower wishbone. I kept it this way, I've only added Jamie's "race" blocks. This gave me about additional -40' of camber.

As you can see alignment is still not perfect and it would take me a bit more time to sort it out with adding another 1mm shim under correct wishbone mount (in my case lower right rear wishbone - this would give me a bit more camber and caster on front right side), but I was happy with the results for now so I didn't bother, as I am planing to change the wheels with 17' and 18' setup with semislick tires, soon. I'll try to make it perfect then.

You also need to know that car is very light and therefore also very sensitive to the load. My measurement was done with me in a car (cca. 70kg). If I had a passenger, or the car was empty, alignment specs were almost identical left/right side.

After modification, steering effort is higher, you better feel response when you're getting towards the limit, there is much less tramlining and therefore car feels much more stable and gives you more confidence when pushing it. However you do loose some low speed turn in response because of higher caster, but it's not really a big deal as turn in response is still good enough. Honestly I didn't really understand the logic of stock 4C suspension geometry, so I was really looking forward to do this mod. Geometry specifications with this mod are quite similar to Lotus Elise/Exige now, which is somehow a synonym of perfect handling car. It's something Alfa should have done to 4C before handing over the cars to journalist and final customers. I believe this is a major flaw and reason for journalist bashing on handling of this car. But this is good for us customers, because we got a decent discount on a car no one wanted, because of a bad reviews. :grin2:
 

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Discussion Starter #18 (Edited)
I went on a trackday, honestly more like an autox than a trackday, but it was a good time anyway.

Trunk is just big enough to put in 2 pairs of racing shoes and helmets, perfect!

I was suprised how much body roll car has, given its weight and not very grippy stock tires. I was expecting it to be more planted, but otherwise car was handling good and predictable for a stock setup, with a bit too much understeer. Good coilovers with adjustable swaybars and stickier tires should fix that. The most disappointing thing were stock seats. They offer almost no lateral support so you spend most of time dealing with not getting thrown around the car, which is really tiring and distracts you from focusing on a driving. I also disliked ABS interruption, which even in race mode felt too sensitive.

If I compare 4C to my BMW Z3M Coupe with well prepared, road legal trackday setup (300hp, 1300kg), 4C is much slower in current stock form. With Z3M Coupe, my best time was 52.xxx and it was among the fastest road legal cars on this track. My 4C best time was 56.xxx. Honestly, I was expecting it to be about second faster than this. I was pushing it as hard as I could, but I guess for a stock setup, that's it. However 4C was still fast enough for 4th overall time of a day, but competition wasn't strong that day.

Fuel consumption on a way to autox was about 6l / 100 km and on a track it was 34l / 100 km. :grin2:
 

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Which suspension do you have, Gale?
That seems like an unusual amount of roll for that part of a curve. Perhaps the standard, not the optional track suspension?

Yes, a good set of coilovers and heavier roll bars will help.

Also as to the seats, I found that this helped me a lot:



http://www.cg-lock.com
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Correct, the suspension is standard, not a track version.

About the seats I'll go for a pair of bucket seats with multipoint harness.

There are so many wishes for upgrades, but I just cannot afford them at the moment. I'll rather enjoy the car through the season and then tune it during the winter time.
 
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