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  • Anthony Fongaro
    Anthony Fongaro

    Quick Drive: Alfa Romeo Giulia Ti Sport Q4

      Not perfect, but quirky in an Italian way.

    This short drive, I drove something I didn’t think I ever would. It wasn't a six-figure super car that can do over 200 mph. No, I never thought I would be driving a modern Alfa Romeo in the United States. For the last 10 years, only two Alfa Romeos have made it to our shores carrying ridiculous price tags. Now, Alfa Romeo is taking a stand with its new Giulia sedan and it’s not what I expected.

    That isn’t a bad thing. What I expected was the same old stereotype of every Italian sedan. Beautiful design and leather, electronics that don’t work and eventually can’t keep up with the Germans. In terms of style, the Giulia isn’t actually pretty. In fact, I would say it seems a bit tame. I understand why they would stay a bit conservative coming back into the market, and the styling cues on the top-of-the-line Quadrifoglio are more dramatic. The front end is classic Alfa Romeo with its upside-down triangle grill.

    Hop inside and the first thing you see is a rather large steering wheel. Alfa probably figured that if Ferrari puts their start/stop button on their steering wheel, why shouldn’t they? The gauges are large and clear as is the 8.8” widescreen display right next to them. Place your hand behind the shifter and a large disc controls that display similar to the systems in Mercedes-Benz and BMW. Sadly, while everything in the front of the cabin feels modern, the navigation system looks like it came from the early 2000s. The graphics aren’t quite as detailed as its rivals but the system does work well .

    Once you turn the Giulia on, the magic starts to happen. The steering is sharp and direct. Stomp on the gas pedal and the 2.0-liter turbocharged inline four sounds fantastic. The engine produces 280 horsepower and 306 lb-ft of torque at 2,000 rpm. Combine this with both all-wheel-drive and an 8-speed automatic, Alfa claims 60mph will be hit in around the 5 second mark. While driving the car, you get the feeling that the spark is really coming back with Alfa Romeo. No longer do you have to pine for an Italian vehicle that is usable but not too quirky like a Fiat. Shifting gears can be done with the oversized paddle shifters or with the gear selector. I found the paddle shifters to be a bit too big but they worked well.

    While driving, you will notice a rotary nob with “DNA” on it. D is for Dynamic, N is for Natural, and A is for Advanced Efficiency. Since the weather was dry, I did half of my drive in Normal and half in Dynamic. If this was my vehicle, I would keep it in Dynamic at all times since Dynamic has a sharper throttle and a more robust exhaust note. As for efficiency, the two-liter engine is rated at 22 mpg city and 31 mpg highway.

    This particular Alfa Romeo did have a few features worth mentioning. First is the 900-watt Harmon/Kardon 14-speaker sound system. There also was a panoramic sunroof (which in my tester was broken. Not a good sign before driving it). It also had the Driver Assistance Dynamic and Driver Assistance Static Packages. Dynamic gets you adaptive cruise control, automatic high beam headlight control, and forward collision warning. Static gets you blind spot monitoring and cross pass detection. There were also the beautiful 19” wheels which made my test car look great.

    I left my drive wondering how this will do against competition. Pin it against German rivals and I think the Giulia can go blow-for-blow against them. It may not have all the safety of a Mercedes or a complex all-wheel-drive system of an Audi, but the way that it drives, stops, and corners makes up for it. Finally, we have an Italian sedan that is attainable. Hopefully it doesn't suffer from "Alfa-itus" of older Alfa Romeos.

    Photo courtesy of FCA Media

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    On 3/20/2017 at 8:19 AM, Stew said:

    And the one in the big test had no issues.  Again, first year models, any car suffer.  13 Escapes and Focuses suffered issue after issue and recall after recall, and yes, the Vette issue IS relevant because like the Alfa, it is low production.  And it is certainly comparable to the ATS which my brother's, BTW, started throwing codes again this weekend.  Of course it isn't a first year model and these kind of glitches should have been worked out at least before the 3rd model year.  Again, you can't damn one manufacturer and ignore the rest because it suits your needs at the time........

    They suffered later in customers' hands not before they even leave the road testers' hands. 

    I did see a blue quatrifugiloioiisels last week and I about $h! my pants. Beautiful car. 

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    On 3/22/2017 at 9:07 AM, surreal1272 said:

     

    Of course not. I wouldn't want the bread to fall apart for no good reason lol!

    :roflmao:

    On 3/22/2017 at 1:09 PM, surreal1272 said:

    GM needs to pull their heads out of their asses and build this already! Best looking Buick since the 80s GNX!

    It's beautiful but who's buying this over a Camaro or Vette? Assuming it's another Alfa GM. 

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    On 3/22/2017 at 0:54 PM, dfelt said:

    PASS, Hate the Predator look. But I raise you one sexy Silver Frost CTS-V Coupe! 

    2013-cadillac-cts-v-coupe-silver-frost-edition-photo-501618-s-1280x782.jpg

    This is so superior to Alfa! :metal: 

    If there's one thing I think Cadillac can improve 100% on, it's turning a sedan into a coupe. Their coupes are atrocious to me but their sedans are sexy as F. 

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    8 hours ago, ccap41 said:

    :roflmao:

    It's beautiful but who's buying this over a Camaro or Vette? Assuming it's another Alfa GM. 

    Regardless of the platform, it is a totally different look and with the GNX name on it, it would carry plenty of appeal with it as well. It could be done IMO but it's all moot at this point since GM currently has no interest in exploring that option. 

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    On 3/26/2017 at 3:07 AM, ccap41 said:

    They suffered later in customers' hands not before they even leave the road testers' hands. 

    I did see a blue quatrifugiloioiisels last week and I about $h! my pants. Beautiful car. 

    As did the Corvettes and apparently now GT350s......

    On 3/26/2017 at 3:22 AM, ccap41 said:

    If there's one thing I think Cadillac can improve 100% on, it's turning a sedan into a coupe. Their coupes are atrocious to me but their sedans are sexy as F. 

    I think the got the ATS coupe perfect.  The problem with the CTS coupe was he ear overhang was way too shot and it made it look like a hatchback with the wrapover taillights. 

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    1 hour ago, Stew said:

    As did the Corvettes and apparently now GT350s......

    I think the got the ATS coupe perfect.  The problem with the CTS coupe was he ear overhang was way too shot and it made it look like a hatchback with the wrapover taillights. 

    Fake news.

    The GT350 aren't " suffering " in road testers hands like the aforementioned Alfa ( and Corvettes ) at, for example Motor Trend.

     

     

     

     

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    44 minutes ago, FordCosworth said:

    Fake news.

    The GT350 aren't " suffering " in road testers hands like the aforementioned Alfa ( and Corvettes ) at, for example Motor Trend.

     

     

     

     

    Aren't they having overheating transmission issues though?

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    47 minutes ago, ccap41 said:

    Aren't they having overheating transmission issues though?

    Yes. But Stew was painting an Alt Facts mural...

    I have yet to hear of Road Test Editors/journalists at M/T, C/D etc etc having issue like they had with the latest Alfa and Corvettes.

    Edited by FordCosworth

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    No. It's just the GT350 owners having a problem so while it's false that the publications were having issues similar to Alfa, they are apparently not, in fact, without issues. 

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    21 hours ago, FordCosworth said:

    Yes. But Stew was painting an Alt Facts mural...

    I have yet to hear of Road Test Editors/journalists at M/T, C/D etc etc having issue like they had with the latest Alfa and Corvettes.

    No, my point had nothing to do with publications, my point was cars having issues in the public's hands.

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    2 hours ago, Stew said:

    No, my point had nothing to do with publications, my point was cars having issues in the public's hands.

    Using false equivalencies to make a point doesn't help assist in making a point.

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    54 minutes ago, FordCosworth said:

    Using false equivalencies to make a point doesn't help assist in making a point.

    WTF are you going on about?  there was no "false equivalences).  CCap stated he public was having issues with the Alfa, i mentioned THE PUBLIC was also having issues with the Vette and GT350.  of course I mentioned Ford, LORD HELP US!!!!  You don't even like the mere mention of negativity on Ford's behalf so you try to turn things around put words in people's mouths to try and say they said something they didn't............

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    38 minutes ago, Stew said:

    WTF are you going on about?  there was no "false equivalences).  CCap stated he public was having issues with the Alfa, i mentioned THE PUBLIC was also having issues with the Vette and GT350.  of course I mentioned Ford, LORD HELP US!!!!  You don't even like the mere mention of negativity on Ford's behalf so you try to turn things around put words in people's mouths to try and say they said something they didn't............

    More often than not, the clarity of your posts/comments is atrocious. 

    The Alfa had its problems with Motor Trend Editors.

    Ccap mentions " They suffered later in customers' hands not before they even leave the road testers' hands. "

    You reply with  " As did the Corvettes and apparently now GT350s...... " 

    It is well know the Corvette, in both Z06 and base, had issues in the hands of Editors of both C&D and M/T. That is not the case with the GT350.

    Can you not see the importance of clarity Stew?

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    11 minutes ago, FordCosworth said:

    More often than not, the clarity of your posts/comments is atrocious. 

    The Alfa had its problems with Motor Trend Editors.

    Ccap mentions " They suffered later in customers' hands not before they even leave the road testers' hands. "

    You reply with  " As did the Corvettes and apparently now GT350s...... " 

    It is well know the Corvette, in both Z06 and base, had issues in the hands of Editors of both C&D and M/T. That is not the case with the GT350.

    Can you not see the importance of clarity Stew?

    Since the latter had already been beat to death, my point was pretty clear.  I assumed you would be able to understand that, sorry I didn't spell it out with a ridiculously long and overbearing reply outlining every nuance of the reply and the specifics of the thought that led to the reply. 

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    1 minute ago, Stew said:

    Since the latter had already been beat to death, my point was pretty clear.  I assumed you would be able to understand that, sorry I didn't spell it out with a ridiculously long and overbearing reply outlining every nuance of the reply and the specifics of the thought that led to the reply. 

    Apology noted and accepted.

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    1 minute ago, FordCosworth said:

    Apology noted and accepted.

    Whatever floats your boat........

    Also, i doubt any of the cars tracked by any mag didn't have the track package and most simply tracked GT350Rs so it is a moot point anyway. 

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    24 minutes ago, Stew said:

    Also, i doubt any of the cars tracked by any mag didn't have the track package

    That would only make sense.

    Spend 50k on a car but skip the 6.5k track package when spending 1k on track days and be surprised when it doesn't perform exactly as expected...on a track... Isn't them offering a track package in which it adds cooling devises telling that if you're going to track the car, buy that?

    I bet most, if not all, spent the 7.5k on the technology package though so they could have their infotainment screen "Sync" 'd to their phones while on track.

    Edited by ccap41

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    2 minutes ago, ccap41 said:

    That would only make sense.

    Spend 50k on a car but skip the 6.5k track package when spending 1k on track days and be surprised when it doesn't perform exactly as expected...on a track... Isn't them offering a track package in which it adds cooling devises telling that if you're going to track the car, buy that?

    That makes sense to me.  I do wonder why that stuff was standard in 16 though since they made it it standard in 17?  or did they just make the coolers standard while leaving the rest of the track package as an option?

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    7 minutes ago, Stew said:

    That makes sense to me.  I do wonder why that stuff was standard in 16 though since they made it it standard in 17?  or did they just make the coolers standard while leaving the rest of the track package as an option?

    On their website, building them, there is no Track Package option for the 2017's. So I will assume they added everything in the package and bumped the price up some because it is not 57k and it was like 48k in 2016(both base prices). But I also see the tech package is now "only" 3k compared to 7.5k. So they completely changed the packaging for 2017. It seems like they forced a lot of options on you and jacked the price up because of them. I'm not usually a huge fan of that. But I guess they "needed" to make the track package standard, because idiots.

    I just realized this talk is still in an Alfa thread.. lol

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    1 minute ago, ccap41 said:

    On their website, building them, there is no Track Package option for the 2017's. So I will assume they added everything in the package and bumped the price up some because it is not 57k and it was like 48k in 2016(both base prices). But I also see the tech package is now "only" 3k compared to 7.5k. So they completely changed the packaging for 2017. It seems like they forced a lot of options on you and jacked the price up because of them. I'm not usually a huge fan of that. But I guess they "needed" to make the track package standard, because idiots.

    Ahhh  it does seem they some nice upgrades to standard tech with the 17s.  Idiots are why there are do not drink warnings on shampoo remember haha. 

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    3 minutes ago, Stew said:

    Ahhh  it does seem they some nice upgrades to standard tech with the 17s.  Idiots are why there are do not drink warnings on shampoo remember haha. 

    Hahaha yeah that's true... People will sue for anything.

    About the overheating issues.. I'd like to see how Ford actually worded their "fix it yourself". If they said it like that or if they said something that mentions 'a track package that as additional cooling was available and the owners chose to not get this.'

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    1 minute ago, ccap41 said:

    Hahaha yeah that's true... People will sue for anything.

    About the overheating issues.. I'd like to see how Ford actually worded their "fix it yourself". If they said it like that or if they said something that mentions 'a track package that as additional cooling was available and the owners chose to not get this.'

    That is a good question.  Somehow I am sure a lot more was said.  I am guessing Ford will probably settle and end up adding he coolers to these cars.  Not that they should reall need to, but it is best for them to nip this in the bud and avoid the bad publicity and will be cheaper for them in the end. 

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    3 minutes ago, Stew said:

    That is a good question.  Somehow I am sure a lot more was said.  I am guessing Ford will probably settle and end up adding he coolers to these cars.  Not that they should reall need to, but it is best for them to nip this in the bud and avoid the bad publicity and will be cheaper for them in the end. 

    Yep, agreed. Just take the loss.

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      The design of the Tonale is an expression that looks fondly into our future. Its compact dimensions embody unique Italian design and the unmistakable original and modern style typical of Alfa Romeo, striking the perfect blend of valued heritage and anticipation of a new evolution. Alfa Romeo holds dear the essence of Italian art and sculpture through the timeless “artigianale” experience of hand sculpting. 

      The Tonale is inspired by the beauty and nuances associated with human forms, and the organic movement of light resulted by pure lines and volumes. Its design tangibly recalls a number of time-honored style elements that are synonymous with the rich history of Alfa Romeo, with an execution that excites a modern approach to the new Alfa Romeo anatomy. 

      An element that echoes the tradition of Alfa Romeo’s DNA is the phone dial wheel. The Tonale’s 21-inch wheel design displays this through a lightweight architectural construction, creating an honest and impactful execution of the circular theme. The lineage of the phone dial wheel dates back to the 1960s, worn proudly on the iconic 33 Stradale. The distinctive Tonale wheel design is also celebrated harmoniously with an exclusive Pirelli tire scheme.

      The bold, elegant volumes of the body side make reference to a seemingly distant past, recalling the sensual qualities found in the pure forms of the Duetto and the Disco Volante Spider, while the Tonale’s “Linea GT” interprets the tension and confidence of the pouncing stance found on the beloved GT Junior. The front end sports Alfa Romeo’s signature “Trilobo” and the distinctive “Scudetto” grille that serves as the central point of strength, driving the speed and fluidity that moves throughout the Tonale. Flanking the iconic “Scudetto” and completing the front monographic is the “3 plus 3” forward lighting that evokes the proud gaze reflective of the SZ and Brera. The rear of the Tonale is elegantly defined by an enveloping window volume, complemented on top by the suspended wing that enhances the continuity between the transparent roof and the rear window itself. As every Alfa Romeo design is cared for through the human touch, the rear lighting is reminiscent of an artistic signature, rather than an optical lighting element … a sort of luminous signature born directly from the artist’s hand.  

      With the inspiration of Alfa Romeo’s racing history at the core, the Tonale interior design conjures the passion associated with providing a spirited drive through dynamic form and pure sculpture. The interior of the Tonale is very driver oriented and the overall layout is designed comfortably for four passengers. The hand-drawn gestural lines stretch throughout the environment to create a muscular tension, as if what surrounds you is ready to lunge forward. The emotional significance of the Tonale interior is also generated by the contrast of rich materials, such as the cold solidity of aluminum combined with the soft and welcoming warmth of the leather and Alcantara. Inside there are translucent backlit panels, such as the central tunnel, providing the perfect location for the essential Alfa Romeo element, the DNA drive mode selector. The Tonale interior provides an inclusive experience, with details typically reserved for the exclusive. The interior is immersive and welcoming, with the dynamic attributes appreciated by those who love to drive.

      The Tonale concept vehicle is equipped with the highest levels of technology to ensure a connected, comfortable and dynamic user experience, while keeping the pleasure of a sporty drive at the forefront.

      The driver's attention will be on the road, with the peripheral focus on a 12.3-inch full digital cluster and a 10.25-inch touchscreen central head unit. The new infotainment features a seamless and fluid multitasking interface that allows the driver to have all the latest features and functionality readily available at their fingertips. The Tonale allows the driver to be fully connected to the Alfa Romeo Lifestyle and Social communities, realized and presented through the new infotainment features, “Alfista” and “Paddock”.
        "Alfista” is an immersive Alfa Romeo Lifestyle experience, providing a fully connected interface with select Alfa Romeo clubs and community events, such as gatherings, drives and meets. This in-vehicle app allows the driver access to live news and updates about the current happenings of the Alfa Romeo brand. The customer has the ability to confirm attendance to events and gatherings, order Alfa Romeo Racing tickets, as well as apply for opportunities to win VIP access to special Alfa Romeo sponsored events, just to name a few. “Paddock” is the Alfa Romeo Tonale in-vehicle garage and market for real-time viewing and purchasing of the latest interior and exterior performance upgrades and equipment. The Paddock app also enables the customer to scroll through the latest offerings of Alfa Romeo Merchandise and Apparel, which can be ordered direct with the touch of the screen.
      The Alfa Romeo Tonale is our look into the future of the premium compact SUV segment, creating a holistic creative expression and through the blend of beauty and technology. For Alfa Romeo Design, it is our “opera d’arte,” or piece of art … otherwise expressed as our Alfa Romeo Tonale.

      Authentically Alfa Romeo
      The Tonale marks the debut of the brand in the premium compact utility vehicle segment and does so in line with the characteristics that have always identified each Alfa Romeo model. The goal is to deliver the best driving dynamics in the segment and to apply electrification in perfect Alfa Romeo style. 

      It is the natural evolution of the brand on the way toward propulsive synergy capable of enhancing performance and driving dynamics. Rather than simply adapting to new standards, with the Tonale concept car Alfa Romeo is reinterpreting its own DNA to capture the new idea of beauty, energy, harmony, efficiency and driving user-friendliness. 

      The electrification of Alfa Romeo comes at the service of sportiness and emphasizes the famous "Mechanics of Emotions" mission of the brand. For this reason, it has no need to express itself through signatures or decided livery, but just with small details such as the Alfa logo, or “Biscione” in hybrid optics, a small yet definitive detail that enhances the Tonale. The rear electric engine opens the way to new technological solutions that offer driving dynamics, maximizes the drive and the pleasure of sporty driving. The evolution is also evident in the drive modes managed by Alfa D.N.A. From the beginning on the 4C and through the development with Giulia and Stelvio, it has reached the Tonale and now implements specific energy management functions.
        "Dynamic" mode evolves into "Dual Power" mode and guarantees maximum output from the two engines "Natural" mode continues to maintain the best performance optimization, and the compromise between using electric and internal combustion engines is managed automatically. This translates into everyday energy and fuel savings, but not at the detriment of performance The “Advance Efficiency” mode becomes “Advance E” for performance in full electric mode. So, in line with the principles of the brand, the plug-in hybrid propulsion enhances the beauty, sporty and dynamic driving characteristics of each Alfa Romeo model, taking them to a new level. In Tonale, electrification embraces performance and represents a new way to achieve high performance and outstanding driving fun The infotainment touch screen features an “E-mozione” button, which offers specific throttle settings, sharper braking and a more direct steering response
      Alfa Romeo Tonale
      The Tonale embodies the adventure potential of a premium compact, dynamic sport utility vehicle capable of guaranteeing the adrenaline of sporty driving inherent in the legend of the brand, in urban settings with the same ease. The hum of the electric motor accompanies the genuinely Alfa Romeo roar creating an efficient, exciting synergy at the service of driving pleasure. The energy switch to electric is the latest key page in the 109-year-long history of the Alfa Romeo legend and one which will propel the brand into the future. 

      This is also behind the name chosen for the new concept car. The Tonale Pass, not far from the Stelvio Pass in the Alps, is a large natural amphitheater famous for its majestic peaks, the natural spectacle of frothy waterfalls and snow all year round in a breath-taking natural setting. Directly connected to the Stelvio Pass, excitement and harmony coexist in the Tonale Pass area. The Tonale is an important development under the sign of continuity and geographical proximity, an evolution traced in time in an evocative association.
       
      About Alfa Romeo
      Since its foundation in Milan, Italy, in 1910, Alfa Romeo has designed and crafted some of the most stylish and exclusive cars in automotive history. That tradition lives on today as Alfa Romeo continues to take a unique and innovative approach to designing automobiles. Born from the world’s greatest driving road – the Stelvio Pass – the Alfa Romeo Stelvio sets a new benchmark in performance, style and technology in an SUV that could only be from Italy. The award-winning Alfa Romeo Giulia delivers race-inspired performance, advanced technologies, seductive Italian style and an exhilarating driving experience to the premium mid-size sedan segment. Crafted by Alfa Romeo artisans at the Cassino plant in Italy, the Giulia Quadrifoglio and the Stelvio Quadrifoglio feature Alfa Romeo’s most powerful production engine ever with best-in-class 0-60 mph times of 3.8 and 3.6 seconds, respectively. Rounding out Alfa Romeo’s world-class lineup is the handcrafted Alfa Romeo 4C Spider, which represents the purest form of La meccanica delle emozioni (the mechanics of emotion), with its race-inspired, mid-engine design and state-of-the-art, Formula 1-inspired carbon fiber monocoque chassis.  

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