Alfa Romeo’s new Giulia
It seems like whenever Alfa are about produce a new sedan you hear the same old predictions about it being a make-or-break car from the motoring press hacks. I remember it well before the 156 was launched and, to be fair, the hacks were probably right. If the 156 hadn’t been so attractive, so good to drive and so keenly priced it wouldn’t have been such a success and could well have spelt disaster for Alfa.
Now, some 16 years after the 156 was launched we are hearing the same doom-laden remarks in reference to the imminent mid-sizer the Alfa Giulia. If they get this right Alfa could cement its place as a viable alternative to BMW and Mercedes for those looking for a bit more flair and passion. Get it wrong and the relevance of Alfa, at least as a maker of executive sedans is seriously in doubt. And just to add more pressure on the car, it is expected to spearhead the re-launch of Alfa in North America.
So what do we know about this important car? Well we know it’s late; The Giulia’s launch was delayed by a year due to an exterior redesign, which shows how important Alfa see this car – it must succeed. The industry insiders say that the new Giulia is likely to be powered by Alfa’s four-cylinder engines, in both petrol and diesel guises. And we expect a top of the range turbo tyre-muncher probably using the 173kW/340Nm 1.8-litre engine as seen in the Giulietta.
What will it look like? We have no idea. There have been more artist’s impressions of the new Giulia than just about any car in history. Some are predicting a coupe-esque style while others hint at a more conventional sedan style.
When will it be released? Well that’s a bit like asking when the next big one will hit San Francisco – we know it’s coming but we don’t know when. The latest suggestion from Alfa is that it’ll be 2015. That’s some two years after the originally slated release date and the delay only adds to the pressure on the latest make-or-break Alfa.