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Geneva show: Alfa Giulia in all its glory

Big shot: Alfa Romeo has developed a full suite of petrol and diesel engines and various model grades for its new Giulia sedan, but is banking on Italian style and top-level driving dynamics to separate it from the pack.

Alfa Romeo details full range for crucial new Giulia sedan ahead of 2017 launch here


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2 Mar 2016

ALFA Romeo presented the full European line-up of its forthcoming Giulia mid-size prestige sedan at the Geneva motor show overnight ahead of its launch in Australia early next year.

Giulia is a crucial model for the Italian brand as Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) Australia pushes further upmarket, discontinuing the MiTo light hatch along the way to leave only the Giulietta hatchback – shown in facelifted form in Geneva – and the 4C sportscar until the rear-drive Giulia kicks off a fresh wave of all-new models.

While the high-performance Quadrifoglio variant was unveiled in Milan nine months ago, the full range of Giulia variants has now been revealed in Geneva ahead of orders opening in Europe and other markets such as the Middle East and Africa on April 15.

The Australian model range is still to be announced, with FCA Australia sifting through the range that spans three trim levels – Giulia, Super and Quadrifoglio – and six engine/transmission combinations: 200HP (149kW) 2.0-litre petrol with eight-speed automatic transmission, 150HP (112kW) and 180HP (134kW) 2.2-litre diesel with six-speed manual or eight-speed auto, and 510HP (380kW) 2.9-litre V6 BiTurbo with a six-speed manual gearbox.

Alfa Romeo has still to confirm whether the latter, which is at the heart of the Quadrifoglio, will be offered with an automatic transmission.

In Europe, all models will be fitted standard with a high level of driver-assist technology including forward collision warning, autonomous emergency braking, pedestrian detection, lane departure warning and a new electromechanical integrated brake system that sees “record-breaking” 100-0km/h stopping distances of 38.5m for the base Giulia and 32.0m for the Quadrifoglio version.

Also at the entry level are 16-inch alloy wheels, dual-zone climate-control air-conditioning, the ‘Alfa DNA’ system and Connect 6.5-inch infotainment system.

The Super version adds 17-inch alloy wheels, leather and fabric upholstery in various colours and unique interior trim, while the Quadrifoglio includes a variety of top-shelf equipment – torque vectoring, active aero splitter system, dedicated brake system, DNA Pro selector with Race mode, a CDC (Chassis Domain Control) system, blind-spot monitoring, adaptive Xenon headlights and various sporting elements in the cabin: leather/Alcantara sports seats, sports steering wheel with red power button, and carbon-fibre trim.

Optional packages (luxury and sport) have been developed, adding higher-grade features such as full-grain leather upholstery, proper wood inlays and chrome trim, while bundled sports extras include aluminium cabin trim and a high-grip sports steering wheel. Both include the aforementioned adaptive Xenon lights.

There is also an 8.8-inch Connect Nav 3D system in the mix, developed in collaboration with Magneti Marelli and offering a “next-generation” human-machine interface (HMI) with features such as advanced voice recognition and full connectivity for mobile devices.

Alfa claims all Giulia engines – not just the twin-turbo V6 – are state-of-the-art and a “characterising element” in keeping with the Italian brand’s DNA.

The 2.0-litre petrol four-cylinder is an all-aluminium unit with direct injection and a ‘2-in-1’ supercharging system that produces 149kW at 5000rpm and 330Nm at 1750rpm.

The 2.2-litre four-cylinder diesel is a new-generation MultiJet II unit with variable geometry turbo, offered in two states of tune: 112kW at 4000rpm/380Nm at 1500rpm, and 134kW at 3750rpm/450Nm at 1750rpm.

Alfa has also now revealed that the 380kW bi-turbo six will deliver maximum torque of 600Nm and be teamed with a six-speed manual gearbox.

As previously reported, the Quadrifoglio version should be well placed to match the likes of the BMW M3 with claimed acceleration from 0-100km/h in 3.9 seconds, a top speed of 307km/h, and “surprisingly efficient” economy (in Alfa’s own words), which drags CO2 emissions down to 198g/km.

Official combined-cycle consumption is still to be divulged.

Alfa is claiming perfect weight distribution on all models and an optimal ride and handling balance, with “astute management” of weights and materials (including lightweight carbon-fibre, aluminium, aluminium composite and plastic components) and a sophisticated suspension layout that comprises a double-wishbone design at the front and a patented four-arm multilink arrangement at the rear.

It also claims to have achieved the most direct steering ratio (11.8) in the Giulia’s class, which will see it compete against the dominant German brands Audi (A4), BMW (3 Series) and Mercedes-Benz (C-Class), among other European, British and Japanese prestige marques.

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