By on 2022-09-30 -
Alfa Romeo Giulia -
Used Car Review
ALFA Romeo has long been at the forefront of all that's exciting about cars and that still holds true today.
The Giulia saloon might be out of syc with the high sales of SUVs but it's not trying to compete with them.
It is aimed straight at the BMW 3 Series, Mercedes C-Class and Audi A4 in the executive class, and it drives as well as any of them.
The company seems to be on a mission to put every one of its cars at the forefront of performance and handling in their class and boy have they got this one right!
Although it only seems like yesterday that I first drove one, the beautiful Giulia was first unveiled to an unsuspecting public in 2016.
Oddly perhaps, it's only available with an eight speed automatic gearbox, but this has superb Ferrari-like fixed paddles behind the steering wheel to make the changes and they are absolutely perfect.
That said, in full auto, the gearbox handles everything superbly, and you only need the paddles occasionally when really pressing on.
Since 2021, there have only been three engine options - all petrol. But up until then, there were also two versions of the same 2.2 litre turbo diesel.
The petrol engines are superb, with excellent power and a delicious soundtrack that's among the best on the market.
First comes a 2.0-litre turbo with 197bhp and this dispatches the 0 to 60 miles an hour sprint in a very good 6.4 seconds while still managing a government economy figure of 47 miles per gallon.
Next up is the same unit boosted much further to give no less than 280bhp and this lops almost a second off its stablemate, but also rates 40mpg.
Finally, in the fire breathing Quadrifoglio (that's Cloverleaf to you and me) comes a Ferrari designed 2.9 litre V6 that boasts 510bhp and still manages 28mpg. This one is a true supercar, reeling in the horizon and reaching the ubiquitous 60 in just 3.8 seconds.
This held the saloon lap record for the famous 14 mile Nurburgring circuit in Germany for some time.
As I said, prior to 2021, diesels were also included in the mix - both 2.2-litres. The more cooking version of this JTDM unit has 150bhp and is rated at an excellent 67mpg while covering the sprint in 7.9 seconds.
Finally comes a 190bhp version, which cuts the sprint time down by a second and still rates 67mpg.
Overtaking in these cars is simply a matter of thought and it's easily done whenever a straight piece of road appears.
Add that stonking performance to the most fluid and agile handling and grippy roadolding, all helped by the Alfa's brilliant 50/50 weight distribution front and rear, and you have a car to be seriously reckoned with.
The direct and positive steering is a joy to use most of the time, although that very directness can be disconcerting at high speed on rougher surfaces, as the wheel turns into a live thing in your hands.
Most of the time however, it's absolutely perfect, and fits beautifully into this sports saloon's wide range of positives.
All Giulias are fitted with Alfa's DNA system, which uses electronics to changes the driving character of the car.
The Normal setting is perfect much of the time, but Dynamic sharpens accelerator response and ushers in a louder exhaust note, while Advanced Efficiency is aimed at improving economy.
All this is marvellous, and many enthusiasts like me would be prepared to accept a compromise on comfort.
But with the Alfa, you don't have to! It rides well over almost all surfaces above 40 miles an hour, and only gets a little more unsettled in town.
There are a number of models and special editions, so all I can say is, make sure the one you go for has all the accoutrements you ‘d like to have!
Pay about Â£16,400 for an '18 18 reg 2.0-litre petrol Super, or Â£25,350 for a '20 20-reg 2.2 JTDM 190bhp diesel Lusso Ti.
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