Alfa Romeo has just confirmed that its 4C sports car managed a swift 8 minute and 4 second lap around the Nurburgring Nordschleife. The lap, achieved with ‘Ring expert Horst von Saurma behind the wheel, may not appear to be remarkable in any way, especially with all the buzz around the Porsche 918’s sub-seven-minute breakthrough.

But that’s hardly a fair comparison, is it? To put it into perspective, the lithe 240 hp, 1.75 litre, four-cylinder Alfa 4C’s 8:04 time makes it faster around the Green Hell than the 420 hp 4.2 litre V8-powered E92 BMW M3 Coupe and the previous-gen Porsche Cayman S with its 320 hp 3.4 litre flat-six engine.

The Alfa Romeo 4C even beats the Renault Megane RS 265 Trophy’s time (still the fastest front-wheel drive car around the track) by four seconds, and is now the new all-time record holder for sub-250 hp production cars. Tyres used were specially-developed ‘AR’ Pirelli P Zero Trofeo rubbers unique to the 4C.

Key to its quick lap time is its supercar-style all-carbon-fibre monocoque chassis, which trims down the two-seat coupe to a featherweight 895 kg. Powered by an uprated 240 hp/350 Nm 1750 (1.75 litre) turbo four, the Alfa 4C has a power to weight ratio of well over 250 hp per tonne. Alfa Romeo claims a 0-100 km/h time of 4.5 seconds and a 256 km/h top speed.