2017 Alfa Romeo Giulia Review

Giulia

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2017 Alfa Romeo Giulia Overview

Alfa Romeo may be relatively foreign to shoppers in the United States, but throughout the rest of the world, it's known for a 105-year history filled with beautiful cars. The Italians have always thrived on their reputation for building “drivers’ cars,” and the Alfa Romeo Giulia will be a central figure as Sergio Marchionne and Fiat Chrysler attempt to revive the brand in America. The Giulia is a premium midsize sedan aimed at stealing market share from a segment currently dominated by BMW, Audi, Mercedes-Benz, and – to a lesser extent – Cadillac. Details regarding a full trim lineup haven’t been announced. Instead, Alfa Romeo has decided to lead with its best foot forward: the Giulia Quadrifoglio.

Marked with the four-leaf-clover symbol, the Quadrifoglio name has historically been reserved for Alfa Romeo’s most racing-inspired efforts. Rest assured, the Giulia will not represent a departure from that ethos. A Ferrari-inspired 505-hp V6 engine with 443 lb-ft of torque powers the Giulia to a top speed of 191 mph. Thanks in part to a curb weight of just over 3,500 pounds – giving it a best-in-class power-to-weight ratio of 7 pounds per horsepower – the Giulia sprints from 0-60 mph in roughly 3.8 seconds. The Giulia Quadrifoglio is a driver-oriented, high-performance sport sedan and, as such, comes standard with a 6-speed manual transmission.

Of course, 6-speed manual transmissions and 505-hp V6 engines don’t exactly draw buyers en masse, especially when they come with a starting cost of roughly $70,000. In order for the Giuilia to compete with the 3 Series and A4s of the world, Alfa Romeo will need to offer it with more humble (and less expensive) specifications. Word on non-Quadrifoglio Giulias has been sparse, to say the least, but a turbocharged 4-cylinder engine producing 276 hp is expected for an entry-level version. Likewise, while the Quadrifoglio’s rear-wheel-drive platform has been touted by Alfa, certain trims of the Giulia will also be available with all-wheel drive.

Beyond the powertrain, the Giulia should easily compete in its segment with an impressive array of interior amenities to go along with its breathtaking exterior. Leather and Alcantara surround the driver and passenger, while copious amounts of carbon fiber are left visible (this is the same company that produces the carbon-fiber-tub 4C, after all). In terms of audio, the Giulia offers an optional 900-watt, 14-speaker Harman Kardon sound system, just in case its exhaust note isn’t enough for you.

Long gone are the days of leather helmets and racing goggles; any car capable of the Giulia’s performance needs to be equipped with appropriate safety features. Expect 8 airbags, electronic stability control, adaptive cruise control, front and rear parking sensors, blind-spot monitoring, and rear cross-traffic alerts. Lane-departure warning and automatic emergency braking are also optional safety features.

Fiat Chrysler is hoping the Giulia can bring the Alfa Romeo name back to prominence in the United States. Considering the significance, we’re not surprised by the mind-boggling specifications of the Quadrifoglio. Our only hope is that this premium sport sedan can live up to the performance expectations delivered by its spec sheet as well as its stunning design.

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When it comes to cars, Matt's curiosity extends well beyond the powertrain. From Ford to Porsche, he's as interested in the history behind the machine as he is the view behind the wheel. Matt writes exclusively for CarGurus.

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