You know that moment when you catch a glimpse of a special car and stop dead in your tracks? Your heart starts racing, and you know you’ll never be satisfied until you find yourself behind the wheel.
That’s what happened to me when I first laid eyes on the new Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio when it was unveiled at the 2015 Los Angeles Auto Show. Despite the near 2,000-mile distance between us, the attraction was insurmountable. Its beauty was startling; its powertrain unparalleled. It was an Alfa Romeo with an extra set of doors. It was without question — love at first sight.
The Giulia wasn’t the only hot luxury sedan to break ground at the LA Auto Show, as the redesigned 2017 Buick LaCrosse and Lincoln MKZ also were seen for the first time. But none shined brighter than the all-new Giulia. With its Ferrari sourced twin turbocharged V6 engine and trademark Alfa triangle grille, the Giulia appears more than capable of stealing buyers away from the German triumvirate.
While my feelings about the car are already well established, the Giulia is truly what dreams are made of. Since the Italian automaker’s return to the U.S., the 4C has been the only model available. If you weren’t in the market for a sports coupe, then Alfa simply had nothing to offer — until now.
Sure, the 4C may look cool, but sedans are far more practical. They haul the kids to soccer practice and carry food home from the grocery store every week. Safety and fuel-efficiency are top priorities too, as most are used as daily drivers. But it seems the engineers at Alfa never looked up the definition of a “sedan” prior to development. Because what they created is something else entirely.
Make no mistake, the Giulia looks like a sports car. The front fascia is similar to the 4C, but with a far more aggressive stance and splitter. Imagine the love child of a 4C and the BMW M3 — the result is perfection. Yes, the Giulia is THAT sexy.
But the real story is under the hood. Though a 276-horsepower 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder Giulia will be available next summer starting at $40,000, the Quadrifoglio is the unanimous enthusiasts’ choice. Sporting a 2.9-liter twin-turbo V6, its ridiculous 505 horsepower and 443 pound-feet of torque make the Quadrifoglio the most powerful production Alfa Romeo ever. A zero to 60 run takes only 3.8 seconds, and the Alfa keeps climbing until 191 miles per hour.
Though speed and styling are certainly at the forefront, Alfa Romeo left no stone unturned when building the Quadrifoglio. An active aero front splitter, a torque-vectoring limited slip differential, and four-piston Brembo brakes are standard on all four-corners. Six-pot front calipers and carbon ceramic rotors are also available as an option should you decide your child’s college education fund go elsewhere. If you plan on trying out that top speed for yourself at the track, perhaps it’s something you should consider. Look on the bright side, there’s always community college.
To achieve a near 50/50 weight distribution, Alfa engineers fitted the Quadrifoglio with a carbon fiber hood, roof, drive shaft, front splitter and rear spoiler. Coupled with it’s explosive powertrain, Alfa Romeo boasts that the Quadrifoglio’s 7:39 Nurburgring lap time is the fastest ever by a production four door sedan.
Of course, beauty and speed do not come cheap. Though it may be a subsidiary of budget-friendly Fiat, Alfa’s Italian roots run deep. The Quadrifoglio will start around $70,000, which isn’t out of line considering how well rounded Alfa’s super sedan appears to be. While it may not have the brand recognition of BMW, Audi, or Mercedes quite yet, the Giulia Quadrifoglio offers sport sedan shoppers a unique alternative defined by its exhilarating performance and unmatched Italian flair.
Like classics? It’s always Throwback Thursday somewhere.