Experts Believe Alfa Romeo is a Good Luxury Car Brand in 2023
Standout styling, engaging performance, and exuberant personality make Alfa Romeo an intriguing brand for luxury car lovers. But is Alfa Romeo a good luxury car brand these days? With six years to improve its formula, it seems like the Italian automaker is getting it together. And with reliability ratings on the upswing and new models on the horizon, the off-beat brand may actually be a good choice for luxury car buyers looking for something a little different.
A history of miserable reliability
For better or for worse, the Alfa Romeo lineup has certainly gotten its fair share of attention. The Giulia Quadrifoglio is easily one of the most evocative sport sedans on the market, chucking 505 horsepower from a 2.9-liter twin-turbo V6.
But that powertrain has also had its share of issues, as experienced by Car and Driver over a 40,000-mile long-term road test. In addition, a myriad of electrical problems, battery issues, and even brake failures plagued the Alfa Romeo lineup upon its introduction to the American market.
After six years, though, both the Stelvio SUV and Giulia sedan have improved their standing.
Improved reliability matches Alfa Romeo driving excellence
These days, Alfa Romeo reliability ratings are good enough to keep up with their luxury car contemporaries. The latest J.D. Power rankings give the Giulia a 77/100 reliability score. That number is on the high-end of the average range, just three points shy of Above Average status.
If you had said that about any Alfa six years ago, you’d be laughed out of the room. But now, the compelling luxury brand is good enough to garner some legitimate attention.
Shedding a bad reputation isn’t easy
Unfortunately for Alfa Romeo, getting rid of a negative reputation is a hard thing to do. It takes either decades of consistency or a flashy counterpoint to change the minds of the buying public.
Even more unfortunate is that reliablity isn’t the kind of metric where flashy is really an option. When Toyota wanted to ditch a reputation for being boring, we got a lineup of sports cars like the GT86, GR Supra, and now, the ultra-hot-hatch GR Corolla. And as Hyundai looked to ditch its reputation for being cheap, things like the Hyundai Sonata and Genesis punched above their weight class to make a point.
Making that kind of big-time move is challenging when the only true test is time. It’s going to take years of producing high-quality, long-lasting cars for Alfa Romeo to shed its unreliable reputation.
Upcoming models can help the brand excel
With the upcoming Alfa Romeo Tonale and a push toward EVs in the coming years, the time is now for Alfa Romeo to prove it is good enough to survive another generation in the U.S.
If the last three years of the Giulia and Stelvio in their gas-powered forms prove to hold up over the long term, there is a good chance that the Italian brand ushers in a new generation of high-performance luxury EVs to compete with Porsche and Lucid. If they can’t, it’ll be an even longer road for Alfa Romeo to prove that it is a good luxury brand.