The new Alfa Romeo Giulia is a huge step in the return of one of the most famous Italian manufacturers, and it could lead to some very special Alfas in the future.
It seems strange to talk about ‘the return’ of Alfa Romeo when really the brand has never left – not literally anyway.
Ever since Alfa shifted its business to concentrate on small front-wheel-drive cars like the MiTo and Giulietta, though, the wider car community felt that the once-legendary Italian manufacturer had lost its touch.
Their cars still had style on their side but felt built down to a price and were full of dynamic flaws that placed these cars firmly below many of the best cars they were competing against like the Volkswagen Golf and Polo.
Ever since last year, though, we’ve had the promise that Alfa Romeo as we used to know it is back. That promise came in the form of the 4C – a rear-wheel-drive carbon fibre sports car that wasn’t afraid to put handling above everything else. It didn’t even have power steering.
The fulfilment of that promise is the recently announced Alfa Romeo Giulia, the car that is due to do battle with models like the BMW 3 Series. So far we’ve only seen the top-spec Quadrifoglio version, powered by a twin-turbo 3.0-litre V6 which eclipses the BMW M3 in terms of power and matches the Mercedes-AMG C63 S.
Carbon Fibre & 50:50 Weight
Not only that, but the Alfa has a carbon fibre bonnet and roof, along with aluminium doors and wings. There’s a handy 50:50 weight distribution as well, just to ensure a perfect handling balance.
With exotic materials and a powerful engine, this Alfa certainly doesn’t seem built to a price. Without a doubt it’s going to be extremely difficult to tempt people out of their BMWs and Audis but if Alfa can convince just a tiny percentage to do so, then the venture can be considered a success.
And for the wider car community that can only be a good thing – Alfa needs volume models like the Giulia and a forthcoming SUV so that it can really stretch its legs and begin investing in something it really does best – more sports cars.
The £45,000 4C is a good start, but Alfa Romeo no doubt has long-term plans for something that could challenge the Porsche 911. And for those of us that love cars, that’s very good news indeed.