21st March 2017

Reviews: Alfa Romeo Giulia – Italian style is The Business

Last Word First

Buyers looking north of the Mondeo/Passat/Avensis/Insignia/Mazda6 segment will find themselves staring at the Audi A4, BMW 3 –Series, Mercedes C-Class, Lexus IS and Jaguar XE – compact executives by another name. These are bought by the up and coming, the fashionista and the go-getters – mobile symbols of their prowess and success.

Entering this gladiatorial arena is not for the faint-hearted, the shy or the unprepared, so the arrival of Alfa Romeo’s new Giulia is sure to pitch the pussycat amid the pigeons. The company car driver and the fleet user have now an alternative choice, one whose sporting heritage and street fashion sensuality are ingredients only it possesses. The Giulia starts at €39,995.

Make: Alfa Romeo, Model: Giulia, Format: 4-door saloon, Trim Levels: Giulia, Giulia Super, Giulia Super Sport, Giulia Super Lux, Engines: 2.2 litre JTD 150BHP, 2.2 litre JTD 180BHP, 2.0 litre Petrol engine, 2.7, Petrol v6, 510BHP, Transmission: 8-Speed automatic standard across the range, CO2 emission ratings: 2.2 JTD 109g/km (both 150 & 180bhp versions), 2.0 litre petrol 139g/km, 2.7 V6 petrol 189g/km.

Prices:

Giulia 2.2 Turbo-diesel, 8-speed automatic, 150bhp - €39,995

Giulia Super 2.2 Turbo-diesel, 8-speed automatic, 150bhp - €41,995

Giulia Super 2.2 Turbo-diesel, 8-speed automatic, 180bhp - €43,795

Giulia 2.0 Turbo-petrol, 8-speed automatic, 200bhp - €40,395

Giulia Super 2.0 Turbo-petrol, 8-speed automatic, 200bhp - €42,395

Giulia Quadrifoglio, 2.9, v6, bi-turbo, 8-speed automatic, 510bhp - €99,945    

 

Some of the Competition, BMW M3, Mercedes-Benz AMG C63, Audi RS4

Outside View

Very few will fail to be roused on their first sighting of the new Giulia. The front end is just a delight to the eyes, the offset number plate, Alfa’s v-grill and slanted headlights, give the Giulia star billing on any street. In this incarnation, Alfa Romeo is definitely targeting the business and compact executive sector, the Giulia offers more than skin-deep attraction.

Inside Story

Layout and material mix give the Giulia its own persona. It carries all we have come to expect in a premium offering. Alfa Romeo has kept the driver and centre console clean and clutter free. With its hooded driver's console, monochrome Alfa logo on the steering boss and the Start/Stop button on the left side of the flat-bottomed steering, the Giulia lures you from the off - you are now on the road to becoming a true Alfisti.

Road Story

It’s an Alfa. It must perform. It owes it to its heritage. It owes me my dreams. In all of this, the new Giulia answers the call and delivers. The driving position is great and the feeling from the car is one of well-bred obedience, a car with the talent to dismiss tarmac with a deftness of touch and talent honed over decades.

On my short launch drives, the two diesel offerings, with 150 and 180bhp, will undoubtedly find homes in decent numbers, their drivability, frugality and, of course, annual road tax being the magnetic attraction. Both deliver a good drive, the Giulia’s steering always accurate and secure, the 8-speed automatic, particularly with the alloy paddle-shifters, proving to be great solos offering from Alfa, in matching the engines and the Giulia’s premium intent.

As well as being rear-wheel drive, every model comes with Alfa’s DNA system, which gives you the choice of three driving modes, Natural, (i.e. Normal), Dynamic (think Sport) and Advanced Efficiency. Out across the ever-changing road surfaces of County Wicklow, I chose to leave the Giulia in Natural mode, the Sport demanding more pace than was prudent to make it worthwhile.

The petrol offering was wonderfully smooth and with 200bhp was not as terrier-like as one might expect. Rather it was ‘diplomatic’ in its delivery and with the Giulia’s well-sorted chassis, was a delight to drive. In the past decade, we have nigh on forgotten how good petrol engines are to drive, mpg and annual car tax being our Gods.

And then you get into the Cloverleaf – the Quadrifogilio, its bi-turbo, 2.9-litre, 510bhp, v6, with Ferrari voodoo all through it, and you know you are in the presence of the gifted. Everything about the Quadrifoglio is real, with no effort to camouflage, its 19” 245-section front tyres being pushed by the 285’s at the rear, giving more than a hint of potency available. At a whisker under 100k, the Quadrifoglio will be a rare sighting on Irish roads but will cause iPhone whiplash to many in its passing. The numbers say it all, the Quadrifoglio is testimony to how technically and mechanically magical, modern motoring has become. In the interests of your own liberty and enjoyment, the odd track day at Mondello is highly recommended.

It is brilliant to see Alfa Romeo back with offerings that truly reflect its wonderful heritage and its future intent. In moving into the D-segment against the ensconced gladiators as mentioned above, Alfa Romeo is showing solid confidence in their product and their purpose. On first impressions, they have chosen well. Game on.  

Alfa Romeo Giulia Trim Levels

GIULIA

  • 17” ‘Style’ design alloy wheels w/ run flat tyres
  • Black cloth upholstery & black/satin interior bezels
  • Alfa Connect 6.5” infotainment system w/ rotary pad control & 8 speakers
  • 5” TFT colour cluster display & On-board computer
  • Dual-zone automatic air conditioning
  • Cruise control w/ speed limiter
  • Rear park distance control
  • Aluminium brake callipers
  • Forward collision warning
  • Lane departure warning

GIULIA 'SUPER'

Incl./Replacing Giulia Spec.

  • 17” ‘Elegance’ design alloy wheels w/run flat tyres
  • Alfa connect 8.8” 3D Navigation / Infotainment system incl.

integrated maps, split screen function, rotary pad control & 8 speakers

  • 7” TFT colour cluster display & electro-chromic auto dimming rear view mirror
  • Dual chrome exhaust tailpipe (2.2 JTD 180hp engine only)
  • Two-tone dashboard & door panel inserts
  • Aluminium door sills w/Alfa Romeo logo
  • Digital audio broadcast (DAB Radio)
  • Chrome exterior window surround
  • Half leather / cloth upholstery

GIULIA 'SUPER SPORT'

Incl./Replaces Super Spec.

  • 18” ‘Turbine’ design alloy wheels w/run flat tyres
  • Leather upholstery available in 3 colours choices
  • Colour coordinated instrument panel underside, centre armrest & door

panel inserts

  • Brushed aluminium effect centre console & door moulding inserts
  • Aluminium sports pedals & Sports leather steering wheel
  • 25W Bi-Xenon headlights w/LED daytime running lights
  • Steering column mounted gear shift paddles
  • Painted brake callipers w/Alfa Romeo logo
  • Dark tinted privacy glass (rear)

GIULIA 'SUPER LUX'

Incl./Replaces Super Spec. 

  • 18” ‘Luxury’ design alloy wheels w/run flat tyres
  • Leather upholstery available in 3 colour choices
  • Colour coordinated instrument panel underside, centre armrest & door

panel inserts.

  • 25W Bi-Xenon headlights w/LED daytime running lights
  • Rear view camera w/dynamic grid lines
  • Power folding exterior mirrors
  • Front park distance control
  • Adaptive cruise control

 

 

 

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