The Veloce is undeniably striking, sharing the exterior styling of the Speciale with its sporty bumpers, black gloss window surround and rear sports diffuser with dual exhausts, 18-inch 10-spoke turbine alloy wheels and yellow-painted brake calipers.
The cabin is every bit as crisp and clean as the exterior, centred around the driver with the main controls grouped on the small leather-wrapped steering wheel complete with a characteristic steering wheel-mounted push-button start.
Two dials on the transmission tunnel are used to adjust the Alfa DNA selector and the infotainment system. The DNA selector modifies the car’s dynamic behaviour according to the driver’s selection: Dynamic, Natural, Advanced Efficiency and Race (only on the Quadrifoglio). It can adjust the settings of the engine, suspension, steering, transmission, rear differential, instrument display, brakes and safety and driver aids, according to the mode selected by the driver. The range and breadth of adjustments vary depending on the engine and trim of the vehicle. Another nice touch is the Italian flag badge at the base of the gear shifter.
The rest of the cockpit has touches of carbon fibre and real wood here and there. The 7-inch thin-film transistor (TFT) instrument cluster provides information in a clear format, including Level 2 autonomous driving functions.
Throughout the cabin, the quality and finish of the upholstery, expensive-feeling trim materials and detailing continue to reflect the attention to detail that Alfa Romeo engineers have given this car. Laminated side glass also helps to reduce noise entering the cabin.
We also appreciated the leather and Alcantara heated sports seats with eight-way power adjustment, carbon interior trim with leather dashboard, ambient lighting, black headlining, illuminated carbon door sills and a climate pack.
While the instrument panel and centre console resembles a work of art and is pretty to look at with its beautifully integrated touchscreen, the storage bins and glovebox are on the small side. And space for rear seat occupants is also a little tight.
Infotainment and connectivity
All versions of the Giulia now come with the 8.8-inch Alfa Connect – developed by Marelli – with navigation and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as standard. The touchscreen provides a selection of interactive widgets and a horizontal scroll layout. New performance pages allow drivers to track key performance metrics while digital HVAC and other controls enhance functionality. Drivers and passengers can customize the homepage by selecting their tailored layout. Reconfigurable widgets provide access to key functions such as radio, media, smartphone, navigation, climate control and more.
In the audio department, a Harman Kardon sound system comprises a 900W, 12-channel Class D amplifier to fill the cabin with surround sound via 14 speakers.
On the connectivity front, the Guilia provides a Wi-Fi Hotspot, Mobile App with Remote Operations, SOS Call (Private) and Roadside Assistance, Vehicle Finder, and Stolen Vehicle Locator and Assistance.
Advanced Driver Assistance Systems
The Giulia incorporates a suite of ADAS functions including highway assist system, traffic jam assist system, traffic sign recognition, lane keep assist, active blind spot assist, driver attention alert, and full-speed forward collision warning plus.
The Marelli-developed light clusters are equipped with halogen lamps or Xenon technology with 25W or 35W modules, the latter of which is equipped with AFS (Adaptive Front-lighting System) to redirect the light beam while cornering and improve visibility.
To obtain a weight-to-power ratio and torsional rigidity, the Giulia uses an array of high-strength and ultra-lightweight materials including, for example, carbon fibre for the driveshaft, aluminium composite and plastic for the rear cross member and aluminium for the doors, wings, engines (petrol and diesel), brakes and suspensions – including the front suspension domes and front and rear subframes. As a result, the dry weight of the 180hp 2.2-litre turbo diesel version is 1,374kg.
In the Quadrifoglio version, the use of ultra-lightweight materials extends to other components including carbon fibre for the bonnet, roof, front splitter, rear spoiler and body inserts, as well as aluminium for the doors and wings. The braking system has been tweaked using aluminium elements, while carbon-ceramic brake discs and front seats with a carbon fibre structural frame can also be specified as options. With a dry weight of 1,524 kg, the power-to-weight ratio of the Quadrifoglio version is 335hp per tonne (2.99kg/hp).
In the hot seat
Our Misano Blue Veloce press review was powered by a 2.0-litre turbo petrol engine mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission and rear-wheel-drive. The four-cylinder engine is made entirely of aluminium, generating 280hp and a maximum torque of 400Nm at 2,250 rpm, taking it from zero to 62mph in just under six seconds says Alfa. It averaged 33 mpg on a mixture of motorways, country roads and town traffic.
For those tired of traditional German sports coupes or dare to be different, the Giulia is an excellent choice. Not only does it look striking with its rakish profile, it is a real treat to drive with plenty of personality. Some established German rivals for this adrenaline rush with an Italian twist include the Audi S4 and BMW 340i.