2017 Alfa Romeo 4C Interior Review

Note: This interior review was created when the 2017 Alfa Romeo 4C was new.

Scorecard

Interior: 5.9

Although the 2017 Alfa Romeo 4C is a luxury sports car, it's all sport with little luxury. At this price point, the 4C's use of low-end materials is off putting. Alfa Romeo juxtaposes high-end carbon fiber and aluminum exterior construction with cheap plastic controls and other dash pieces on the inside. Seating comfort is bearable only because of the 4C's performance, which turns that frown upside down. The 4C uses an antiquated-looking audio system with a removable faceplate. After you fire up the 4C, you'll have trouble hearing the stereo because of all the engine noise, which is pleasing to the ears if you're into that sort of thing. Cargo space is dreadful, with a tiny compartment next to the engine that is a trunk in name only.

  • Some buttons feel embarrassingly flimsy, but the 4C's chassis is constructed like a race car with beautiful handlaid carbon fiber and aluminum cradles front and rear. That alone is worth the base car's price." -- Edmunds
  • "While it may the look the part from the exterior, the 4C's interior unapologetically detaches the car from any dreams of being a luxury vehicle. The seats are firm and the wheel feels good to the touch, but the rest of the interior materials are sub-standard, not too far removed from its FIAT 500 next-of-kin." -- Left Lane News (2015)
  • One can't discuss the interior without mentioning the sound, or some would say noise. For such a small-displacement four-banger, it sounds very good – and you'd better like it, because you hear it all the time, at least in cars with the optional $500 racing exhaust." -- Cars.com (2015)

Seating

There's room for two in the 4C, and cloth upholstery comes standard. Seating options include black or red leather upholstery. All seats are manually adjustable, and they don't recline. Alfa Romeo bolts the 4C's seats to the floor, which gives the driver even more feedback from the road. However, they aren't very comfortable or supportive.

Some will find enough head- and legroom in the 4C, but taller folks might disagree. Entry and exit into the cabin is a chore, especially for the less flexible among us. A low seat mounting and thick side bolsters make things even more difficult.

Lousy rear visibility is arguably the biggest miss for the 4C. You'll have no problem seeing through the windshield and even just beside you, but it is almost impossible to see behind you. Rearview and sideview mirrors don't help much, and there's no option for a rearview camera. Parking sensors are available, and you'll need them.

  • "The Alfa Romeo 4C's interior features barely tolerable ergonomics, clumsy entry and exit, little legroom, appalling outward visibility, and virtually no cargo or storage space. This is absolutely not a daily driver. … The view through the windshield is excellent, but the small windows, side mirrors, essentially useless rearview mirror and enormous blind spots make it a challenge in the real world. Optional rear parking sensors are a must, especially because there's no rearview camera available." -- Edmunds
  • The seats bolt directly to the floor and are manually adjustable only slightly, sliding back and forth and reclining only a little bit; you'll sit upright, with tight shoulder space but good leg and headroom." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "If you're looking to stay limber, getting into and out of a 4C every day could be just the thing. The low door sills are exceptionally wide -- and slathered with expensive-looking carbon fiber, incidentally. The seats are mounted below the sills and guarded by prominent side bolsters. In short, you typically end up falling into the car. Exiting can be even harder, especially if you have long legs to extract from the deep, narrow footwell under the steering wheel." -- Autotrader (2015)

Interior Features

The 4C comes with few standard features. Among them are an Alpine audio system, Bluetooth for phone and audio, a USB port, HD Radio, satellite radio, and a 7-inch full-color driver information display. Optional features are equally scarce: cruise control, a security alarm, and rear parking sensors.

The stereo system sounds good, as long as the car isn't fired up. You won't hear it otherwise, because engine is loud and sound insulation is poor. Behind the steering wheel, a dazzling 7-inch screen displays the traditional assortment of gauges. For the most part, controls are easy to work with. There's a push-button gear selector for the transmission and a removable faceplate for the audio system, which keep the 4C's interior unique.

See 2017 Alfa Romeo 4C specs »

  • "Eccentricities abound, with a strange audio head unit (with a detachable face), confusing instrument panel and arduous trip-meter reset protocol. Some controls are marginally easier to operate, such as the window switches, push-button transmission selector and drive-mode rocker." -- Edmunds
  • "The audio system sounds good when the car isn't running, but it's inaudible the rest of the time." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Once you're situated in the driver seat, the 7-in TFT instrument panel is the first thing that jumps out. It's as crisp and colorful as a video game, with a central digital speedometer flanked by auxiliary readouts and encircled by a 7,000-rpm tachometer." -- Autotrader (2015)

Cargo

You may want to think twice about what you bring with you in the 4C. Its storage compartment rests behind the car's midengine and holds a paltry 3.7 cubic feet of space. Aside from that, there are few other places to put your things. There's a small pouch to place a regular-sized phone. However, there are no door pockets or even a glove box. You'll have to put your registration and the like in a compartment behind the armrest, which may even be too small for that.

  • "There's a tiny 3.7-cubic-foot trunk behind the engine that, ironically, can barely hold a helmet." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "The minuscule cargo area is located adjacent to the hot engine and under the rear glass. There are two useless cupholders and basically no in-car storage aside from a stretchy net under the dash instead of a glovebox and a lockable pouch behind the center armrest." -- Edmunds
  • "The luggage space behind the engine is big enough to fit a carry-on size roller bag and maybe a jacket. I fit an overstuffed backpack, a camera bag, and a helmet with some work. There's no glovebox or armrests or cubbies or mesh pockets. Even the cupholders are miserable." -- Jalopnik (2015)

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