If you’re looking for power and performance, the Giulia Quadrifoglio that was recently unveiled at the Alfa Romeo museum in Arese, outside Milan, will surely not disappoint. In fact, this Guilia model (the sportiest version yet) uses Maserati's Ferrari-derived 510-hp V-6 engine, ensuring that it boasts more power than its competition from Mercedes-Benz and BMW.
Sales of the Giulia Quadrifoglio (which means cloverleaf in Italian) will start in Europe in early 2016 and in the U.S. a few months after. There will be more Giulia versions to arrive later. These include all-wheel-drive models and diesels for Europe. In a statement, Alfa Romeo said that the car is the embodiment of the core features that have turned the brand into one of the most loved automotive brands in the world.
The car features “distinctive Italian design; innovative powertrains, perfect weight distribution, unique technical solutions and the best weight-to-power ratio." Powering the Giulia Quadrifoglio is a twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter engine that the Maserati Quattroporte and Ghibli sedans also use. The Giulia Quadrifoglio has an extra 85hp of power compared to the BMW M3 (425 hp), which also runs on a twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter engine.
Meanwhile, the AMG C63 S (the hottest version of the Mercedes-Benz C class) boasts of having the same power as the Quadrifoglio but it is equipped with a twin-turbocharged 4.0 liter V-8, which is much bigger. The C-450 AMG is the C class that has an engine that’s similarly sized to that of the Quadrifoglio. It uses a 3.0-liter V-6 turbocharged engine that produces 367 hp.
Audi currently doesn’t even have a vehicle that can rival the Quadrifoglio. Compared to the other models in its class, the Giulia Quadrifoglio boasts of having the fastest acceleration. It only takes the car 3.9 seconds to go from a standstill to 100 kph. In comparison, the BMW M3 achieves this speed in 4.1 seconds and the Mercedes AMG C63 S gets to this speed in 4 seconds.
The Alfa Romeo model will be available only with rear-wheel drive and a manual transmission. The weight has been reduced to around 3,300 pounds because the designers used a carbon fiber hood and roof. Fiat Chrysler Automobiles is relying on this sedan as the first model in its 5 billion euro relaunch plan for Alfa Romeo.
FCA has set a 2018 target of reaching 400,000 units in annual worldwide sales from last year’s 70,000 units. Before the launch, market researchers at IHS Automotive said that the Giulia is sure to give a significant boost to Alfa. They said that the most challenging market is the U.S. where the brand has nearly no existing image as well as no exclusive retail network.
IHS anticipates that as soon as the Giulia becomes available in all of its markets, it will be able to reach annual sales in the mid-40,000s. After this launch, the Alfa Romeo models that will follow are its first SUV in early 2017 and a full-sized sedan in late 2017 as it expands its lineup beyond the Mito subcompact, the Giulia compact, and the limited-edition 4c sports car.
For these models, a new rear-wheel-/all-wheel-drive platform named Giorgio was developed by Alfa’s special group of engineers, stylists, and designers. The automaker boasts of having technical advances like a double-clutch Torque Vectoring system that permits the rear differential to independently control the torque delivery to every wheel, enhancing traction in low grip conditions without needing to run up against an invasive stability control system.
To achieve instant brake response, the company has an electromechanical brake system that merges stability control and a traditional servo brake. As a result, its cars are capable of record-breaking stopping distances.
In addition, the Giulia is equipped with a new system to make adjustments on the car's dynamic behavior depending on the driver's selection. These include: Dynamic, Natural, Advanced Efficient (a new energy-efficiency mode) and Racing for high performance versions.