Alfa Romeo 4C still coming to US, but later

Alfa Romeo 4C debut in the US pushed back from 2013 to 2014. Chrysler/Fiat offers no explanation for delay of the Alfa Romeo 4C. 

Sandro Campardo/AP/File
The new Alfa Romeo 4C is shown during the press day at the 83rd Geneva International Motor Show in Geneva, in March. The 4C represents Alfa Romeo's return to the US, but Chrysler/Fiat announced Tuesday that it's delaying the US introduction.

Yesterday, we learned that the 2014 Jeep Cherokee -- which was supposed to arrive in July -- has been delayed for a third time. Now, another vehicle in the Chrysler/Fiat family has had its debut pushed back: the 2014 Alfa Romeo 4C.

The 4C marks Alfa Romeo's return to the U.S. When it was unveiled at the 2013 Geneva Auto Show in March, Sergio Marchionne said that he expected the 4C to arrive in America by the end of 2013. Fiat has stuck to that timeline, even confirming it at an event for the 500L earlier this month.

Unfortunately, it ain't happening. Fiat has announced that the 4C won't arrive in the U.S. until the second quarter of 2014 -- at the earliest.

Why the delay? No one knows.

No automaker wants to delay the launch of a new vehicle -- especially one as hotly anticipated as the 4C. To announce two such holdups in the span of just a few days? That's got to feel terrible.

But just as with the Jeep Cherokee, the 4C needs to be perfect. It's Alfa Romeo's flag in the sand, its beachhead in the U.S. Sure, it'll be produced in very limited numbers; in fact, many of us may never see one in the wild. But despite being such a rarity, everyone will hear about it, especially if the 4C is a shoddy piece of work. 

When the 4C does arrive -- all 1,000-or-so units allotted to the U.S. -- it'll be on display at Fiat dealerships. Chances are, many will be pre-sold, but if you've got $54,000 lying around, you might ring up your local showroom and put your name on the list.

For more on the Alfa Romeo 4C, visit MotorAuthority.com.

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