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William Maley

Quick Drive: 2018 Alfa Romeo Giulia Ti Sport Q4

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It seems a bit odd to be driving the Giulia Ti almost half a year on from spending a week high-performance Quadrifoglio. This felt like I had a nice slice of cake and was now facing a bowl of vegetables. Trying to keep an open mind on Ti was going to be difficult, considering the mixed opinions I had with the first Giulia. But I knew that I had to try.

  • I actually prefer the toned-down nature of Ti Sport compared to Quadrifoglio as lacks the aggressive bumper treatment and cloverleaf emblems on the fenders. Some items such as the uniquely styled wheels do carry over and add a small sporting touch.
  • The only item I would change is the color. Grey just makes the design somewhat boring. The blue I had on the Quadrifoglio works much better as it allows the design to stand out.
  • The interior is still very much a mixed affair. Most of the materials are what you would expect to find a luxury car of this caliber with soft-touch plastics, leather, and metal trim. But Alfa clearly cut some corners such as the cheap plastics used on the center console. The front sport seats provide excellent bolstering and comfort for any adventure you decide to take. Rear space is almost non-existent for most adults.
  • Alfa Romeo did address one of my complaints with that I had with 2017 Giulia. 2018 models now have the option of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. It is shame that it is an option, but it does make using infotainment system somewhat less frustrating.
  • Some of the issues I had with the system in both the Giulia Quadrifoglio and Stelvio Ti are present in this Giulia. Going through a number of menus to accomplish simple tasks, slow performance, and a small number of crashes during my weeklong test. I really hope Alfa Romeo is working on some updates to get this system in order.
  • Power comes from a turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder delivering 280 horsepower and 306 pound-feet of torque. This is paired with an eight-speed automatic and optional Q4 all-wheel drive.
  • I really liked this engine in the Stevlio as moved the compact crossover without breaking a sweat. In the Giulia, this engine makes this sedan fly away from stops. It is said the turbo-four can hit 60 mph in just over five seconds, which is fast for the class. One disappointment is the engine sounding like a diesel at idle, not something you want to have in an Italian sport sedan.
  • EPA says the Giulia Ti with AWD will return 23 City/31 Highway/26 Combined. My average for the week landed around 23.6 in mostly city driving.
  • One trait that both the Ti Sport and Quadrifoglio share is the handling. The chassis underneath allows the Giulia to dart around in the corners and keep body motions well in check. Steering is another bright spot where the vehicle would instantly respond to any input, along with provide good feedback.
  • Ride quality is slightly better than the Quadrifoglio as only a small number of bumps come inside. Put the Giulia into Dynamic (sport mode) and the ride does become somewhat unbearable.
  • Unfortunately, my Giulia Ti tester had an issue with the brakes. Whenever the brakes were applied, there was a noticeable screeching noise coming the rear of the vehicle. At first, I thought something had gotten lodged in the brakes. But the noise would go away after I had been driving for a bit. Park the car for awhile and drive it once again, the noise would return. This likely hints at something being warped - a bit disappointing for a vehicle that only had a few thousand miles on the odometer.
  • The Giulia is one of those vehicles I really want to like a lot more than I currently do. Alfa Romeo still has a number of issues they need to address sooner than later. I only would recommend this model for those who understand what they’re getting into.

Gallery: 2018 Alfa Romeo Giulia Ti Sport Q4

Disclaimer: Alfa Romeo Provided the Giulia, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas

Year: 2018
Make: Alfa Romeo
Model: Giulia
Trim: Ti Sport Q4
Engine: 2.0L Turbocharged MultiAir SOHC Inline-Four
Driveline: Eight-Speed Automatic, All-Wheel Drive
Horsepower @ RPM: 280 @ 5,200
Torque @ RPM: 306 @ 2,000 - 4,800
Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 23/31/26
Curb Weight: N/A
Location of Manufacture: Cassino, Italy
Base Price: $41,995
As Tested Price: $51,885 (Includes $1,295 Destination Charge)

Options:
Ti Sport AWD Package 22S - $2,500.00
Driver Assist Dynamic Plus Package - $1,500.00
Ti Leather Package - $995.00
8.8-inch AM/FM Bluetooth Radio with 3D Nav - $950.00
Harman/Kardon Premium Audio System - $900.00
Driver Assistance Static Package - $650.00
Vesuvio Gray Metallic - $600.00
19-inch x 8-inch Bright 5-Hole Aluminum Wheels - $500.00


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This is a car that everyone seems to get excited about except me.  I liked the old 159, it had character, but these I find to be just so anonymous.  The interiors are nothing to write home about either. 

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I like the sounds the Quadrifoglio makes.  The V6 on this is awesome.  Ferrari engine tuners really know how to make an engine sing. 

 The Guilia's silhouette has a lot in common with a BMW 3 Series.  And it does not help the situation when BMW 3 Series cars have looked the same since about 10 years now.  This might explain some of the blandness. 

I do think the Guilia is sexy enough, but maybe the glorious sounds of its V6 have me blinded with how sexy it might really be in the looks department. 

Edited by oldshurst442
adjusted my opinion
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I seldom like modern car's wheels, but I do like these a bunch.
On the other hand, except for the Edsel-esque grille opening, the entire exterior is about an anonymous as they come. In profile or from the rear, it could be ANYTHING. Interior also feels dated to me.

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:puke: The bland styling of this auto and the terrible front nose just make it a puke fest for me. Pass, I see nothing inside or out that would make this an exciting auto to own.

While I would never own a German auto, I would take a German auto over any of the over rated garbage Italians make.

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On 12/27/2018 at 11:22 PM, dfelt said:

:puke: The bland styling of this auto and the terrible front nose just make it a puke fest for me. Pass, I see nothing inside or out that would make this an exciting auto to own.

While I would never own a German auto, I would take a German auto over any of the over rated garbage Italians make.

Please be more direct and let us know how you really feel.

On 12/27/2018 at 8:40 PM, balthazar said:

I seldom like modern car's wheels, but I do like these a bunch.
On the other hand, except for the Edsel-esque grille opening, the entire exterior is about an anonymous as they come. In profile or from the rear, it could be ANYTHING. Interior also feels dated to me.

I really kind of agree with you. Cadillac's designs seem much more fresh and vibrant.

On 12/27/2018 at 11:46 AM, Drew Dowdell said:

This is a car that everyone seems to get excited about except me.  I liked the old 159, it had character, but these I find to be just so anonymous.  The interiors are nothing to write home about either. 

I like elements of it, but overall I can do a lot better for the money. CPO CTS-V is calling my name....

On 12/27/2018 at 8:12 PM, oldshurst442 said:

I like the sounds the Quadrifoglio makes.  The V6 on this is awesome.  Ferrari engine tuners really know how to make an engine sing. 

 The Guilia's silhouette has a lot in common with a BMW 3 Series.  And it does not help the situation when BMW 3 Series cars have looked the same since about 10 years now.  This might explain some of the blandness. 

I do think the Guilia is sexy enough, but maybe the glorious sounds of its V6 have me blinded with how sexy it might really be in the looks department. 

The car in question is the four without the glorious six...you still feel a rise in your pants when you look at this, Skippy?

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, A Horse With No Name said:

 

The car in question is the four without the glorious six...you still feel a rise in your pants when you look at this, Skippy?

LOL!!!

Skippy?

Ive been called and nicknamed many things over the course of my 45 years on this planet, Skippy was never one of them.  Its a first for me.

Skippy...

Image result for Skippy Family ties\ 
Nerdy, yet cute, but invisible to Mallory because not Alpha male. He probably became a billionaire by creating a techie company start-up in Silicone Valley and is having the last laugh as Mallory probably is divorced with 2-3-4 kids living in a trailer park because she chose a Nick type  ignoramus...(Nick was lovable though)
 
Yeah...Im not seeing Skippy in me. 
Back to the Giulia.  Yeah, had I understood the 4 cylinder part a tad better and not been blinded and biased towards that Ferrari engineered and tuned V6 , I would have not referenced it in the first place.
So I kinda feel like Nick at this point in time. 
Related image
 
Without the earring of course.  
 
PS: I was always more like...no, not an Alex P. Keaton type, but another Michael J. Fox character.
Like Marty McFly.
Nerdy, yet cool.
Cute, but not a hunky beef steak.
Calm yet jumpy. 
Sporty and athletic but clumsy at the same time. 
Shy  and introverted yet rock-n-rolly and arrogantly loud. 
laisser faire but aggressive
 
That is why I love Oldsmobiles.  They capture me perfectly.  Sporty and classy.  Not  too sporty like Pontiac. Not everyday man's Chevy. Not 1%er Cadillac and not a Doctor's or Lawyer's professional job Buick.  But Oldsmobile. 
A bottom end Olds could be bought by an everyday blue collar man if he was a hard working soul and played his cards right. 
A muscle car 442 could be as sporty as a Pontiac.
A high end 88/Delta 88/Super 88 and the like could be a professional's ride. It could also be bought by a 1%er that wanted to stay stealthy and not advertise. 
 
The Giulia and BMW and Acura and Buick after Olds went away, want to play in that former Olds playground. 
Apart from BMW, all others have failed. Even BMW is faltering somewhat.  Audi has success, but they too are becoming what Olds became in the late 1980s to early 1990s. 
What is amazing with Oldsmobile, they kept that high image for a good 80 years straight. Lost it but kinda regained again just before GM pulled the plug on them. 
 
Back to the Giulia.  The a ONLY redeeming quality it has is that V6. And the suspension set-up on it that out does BMW. But Im not so sure people care for an ultimate driving BMW-like experience anymore.  
In the 1990s, this car would most have definitely have dethroned BMW and would have stolen market share from BMW 3 series buyers.  Not so much in 2018.  
OOPSIES.  2019.  Another Nick moment. 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Edited by oldshurst442
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Actually I like 90's BMW's more than most post 73 Oldsmobiles and the Alfa in question. Indeed...a more Pure driving machine.

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The problem I see with the Giulia is that FCA, if they truly want Alfa Romeo to build on this.... will have to keep this car fresh every 5-6 years. They won't get away with letting cars get old like the LX's, or the long in tooth (but worth it) product cycle of the RAM's...

 

I also think that Alfa Romeo with its new focus for luxury and sport, like most Italian brands of sports cars and exotics.... is incompatible with electric power-trains.

Hybrids maybe, but full electric... There's no point.  Imagine a world many years from now... where the electric version is the regular model and the high performance model still has an internal combustion engine, and you'll pay a gas guzzler tax on top of that... 

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54 minutes ago, Suaviloquent said:

The problem I see with the Giulia is that FCA, if they truly want Alfa Romeo to build on this.... will have to keep this car fresh every 5-6 years. They won't get away with letting cars get old like the LX's, or the long in tooth (but worth it) product cycle of the RAM's...

 

I also think that Alfa Romeo with its new focus for luxury and sport, like most Italian brands of sports cars and exotics.... is incompatible with electric power-trains.

Hybrids maybe, but full electric... There's no point.  Imagine a world many years from now... where the electric version is the regular model and the high performance model still has an internal combustion engine, and you'll pay a gas guzzler tax on top of that... 

I think the day of full electrics is a good bit off.

And yes...in many ways FCA is their own worst enemy.

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The market has a 'sporty Italian' brand with Maserati- doesn't seem to find many takers.
It remains to be seen if A-R brings enough fresh to the table to sustain itself. I think they should take a risk with their designs and try & stand out some.

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11 hours ago, balthazar said:

The market has a 'sporty Italian' brand with Maserati- doesn't seem to find many takers.
It remains to be seen if A-R brings enough fresh to the table to sustain itself. I think they should take a risk with their designs and try & stand out some.

I agree. Although I like this design better than say the sport sedans of Acura and infinity...taking risks for them did not pay off at all.

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I would still be worried about the issues they keep having...simply not a good thing!

Still not a the Luxo level to play with the others.....

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, daves87rs said:

I would still be worried about the issues they keep having...simply not a good thing!

Still not a the Luxo level to play with the others.....

They are being consistent with the long-established Italian luxury or sporty image, though...looks great, drives great, but poor reliability and quality.  

Edited by Robert Hall
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13 hours ago, Robert Hall said:

They are being consistent with the long-established Italian luxury or sporty image, though...looks great, drives great, but poor reliability and quality.  

Very true...and fun to drive is what will help them out.

Catch is they can’t enjoy it while it’s being worked on....

That said, I hope they do improve them for us to enjoy....

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      Trim: SEL w/4Motion
      Engine: 2.0L DOHC Turbocharged Direct Injected 4-cylinder
      Driveline: 8-Speed automatic with all-wheel-drive
      Horsepower: 268
      Torque @ RPM: 258 @ 0 - 3,600
      Curb Weight: 3,655 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Emden, Germany
      Base Price: $35,845
      As Tested Price: $42,790 (Includes $995.00 Destination Charge)

      View full article
    • By Drew Dowdell
      The Volkswagen Arteon is the vehicle that effectively replaces the Volkswagen CC in VW’s lineup, however, it comes at the segment with a noticeably different approach. The Arteon is much more interesting looking than the old CC and comes as a hatchback rather than a sedan.
      I would hesitate to use the word “bold” about the Arteon’s looks, as feels rather conservative to me, but it still has a gravitas that lets passers-by know that this is not an ordinary Volkswagen. The front end has a lot of detailing with multiple creases in the hood and a deep, wide grille. Thick wheel arches give the car a muscular look. Around back, the hatch area fits between a set of thick thighs and a set of tail lights that almost look Benz-like. Down below there is a chrome strip that runs around the entire perimeter of the car.
       
      As handsome as the exterior is, the interior is a bit of a letdown. In the SEL version I drove, the interior materials were not up to snuff for a car with a $42,795 sticker price and the design is fairly sterile. There is a wide strip that traverses the dash and mimics the look of the grille and below that, another wood (plood?) strip runs parallel. The center stack is neatly organized with all knobs and buttons within easy reach.  If you are a bit of a neat freak like me about your car, keep a microfiber duster in the glovebox to wipe down the piano black surfaces.  The seats are flat and firm but without much lateral support. As a hatchback, rear passengers get cut out of a bit of headroom, but there is plenty of legroom back there for them to stretch out.  Cargo room for this size of a car can only be described as cavernous. The hatch lifts up high and out of the way giving you easy access to anything you can rear. Fold the rear seats down and you may even say “Crossover, what?”, there is 55 cubic feet of cargo room back there.
      The Arteon comes with an 8-inch touch screen display that includes Apple Car Play and Android Auto. Android Auto is easy to set up and I stayed in that mode during my entire drive.
      Driving the Arteon is probably the best part about it. My tester came equipped with 4motion, Volkswagen’s all-wheel-drive system. It works well and the car feels glued to the road during the twisties.  No matter which level of Arteon you buy, you have a single choice of engine. Standard is a 2.0 liter turbocharged 4-cylinder with 268 horsepower and 258 lb.-ft of torque connected to an 8-speed automatic transmission. It is this engine that delayed the Arteon’s entry into the U.S. due to a backlog of certification testing. This setup is merely adequate. It neither thrills you nor lets you down.  I do wish a V6 were available, but small-displacement turbo-4s are where the market is going these days.  Unfortunately, even with the small displacement 4-cylinder, you still get V6-like fuel economy.  The Arteon is rated for 20 city / 27 highway / 23 combined. For reference, that’s about the same as an AWD Buick Lacrosse with a big V6 and 310 horsepower, in fact, the Buick does a little better on the highway and so do most other V6 sedans. In normal mode the transmission is a bit lazy, upshifting early and reluctant to downshift. In sport mode, it wakes up a little but there is still a lag when downshifting.
      The ride and drive of the Arteon is definitely dialed towards comfort over sport. It comes equipped with a DCC adaptive ride system, but I notice almost no difference between the Sport and Comfort modes. Cruising along in the Arteon is serene with very little noise from the outside entering the cabin. It is certainly a car that can get you into trouble with the leasing company for mileage.
      Is the Arteon a car I can recommend?  Yes and no.  If you’re a die-hard VW fan, then the Arteon is an easy choice to make. Otherwise, there are more powerful and more upscale options out there for the price, but you wouldn’t be wrong to choose this one.
      Year: 2019
      Make: Volkswagen
      Model: Arteon
      Trim: SEL w/4Motion
      Engine: 2.0L DOHC Turbocharged Direct Injected 4-cylinder
      Driveline: 8-Speed automatic with all-wheel-drive
      Horsepower: 268
      Torque @ RPM: 258 @ 0 - 3,600
      Curb Weight: 3,655 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Emden, Germany
      Base Price: $35,845
      As Tested Price: $42,790 (Includes $995.00 Destination Charge)
    • By William Maley
      What a difference that four years make. That's the timeframe from the first Kia electric I reviewed (Soul EV) to the model seen here, the 2019 Niro EV. So much has changed in terms of battery technology and overall range that I could see myself having an electric vehicle as a primary mode of transport. There are some still some issues that make me think twice, but they are getting smaller.
      Kia avoided the trend of going crazy with the Niro EV’s design. Little touches such as blue accent trim, 17-inch alloy wheels, and closed-front grille hiding the charging port help the EV stand apart from other Niro models. Changes inside are even smaller with a new center console featuring a dial control for the drive selector. This move is very smart as many buyers really don’t want their vehicle to shout “LOOK AT ME” when driving. The electric powertrain in the Niro EV packs quite the punch - 201 horsepower and 291 pound-feet of torque. This is up 62 and 92 respectively from the Niro Hybrid I drove a few years back. Providing the electricity is a 64 kWh Lithium-Ion Polymer Battery that provides an estimated range of 239 miles. Kia says the Niro EV will hit 60 mph in under eight seconds. But I found it to be slightly quicker thanks to all of the torque being available instantly. Merging onto a freeway is where the electric powertrain does lose steam - blame a hefty curb weight of 3,854 pounds. I saw a maximum range of 208 to 210 miles throughout my week. This was due to cold temperatures ranging from low 30s to high 40s. But I was able to do a forty-mile round-trip commute for most of the week without having any range anxiety issues. Charging anxiety is a different story. If you have been reading my electric and plug-in hybrid reviews, then you’ll know that I only have access to 120V charging at home. Plugging the Niro EV after my day job meant waiting over sixteen hours for a full charge. This caused me to not want to venture out far unless I had some important errands to run as it would mean a longer time for a recharge. If I had completely depleted the battery, I would be waiting over two days for the battery to recharge. If you have a 240V charger, that time drops to 9.5 hours for a full-recharge. Finding a quick charger has gotten easier in the past year or two, but it is still a hit and miss affair. There are no quick chargers near where I live (unless I have a Tesla). It's slightly better further south where I work as there some around the area. But that introduces its own set of problems such setting aside the time to charge up the vehicle to finding if one works. I should note that I didn’t get the chance to try quick charging with the Niro EV during my week.  Handling is slightly better in the Niro EV thanks to the additional weight of the battery pack which reduces body roll. Steering is very light when turning, but will surprise you with how quick and accurate it deals with changes in direction. Ride quality is a little bit firm with some bumps and imperfections making their way inside. Where the Niro EV shines is noise isolation. During my work commute, I was surprised by how little wind and road noise came inside.  The major downside to the Niro EV is its limited availability. At the time of this writing, Kia is only selling the Niro EV is twelve states - most of them having Zero Emission Vehicle (or ZEV) programs that require automakers to sell a certain amount of electric vehicles in their lineups. Nothing is stopping you from purchasing a Niro EV in one of the states that it is available, but I’m wondering how many people will do that. Pricing for the Niro EV begins at $38,500 for the base EX model. I had the EX Premium at $44,000 which adds such goodies as an eight-inch touchscreen, premium audio system, heated and ventilated front seats; sunroof. Add in a $1,000 Launch Edition package (LED headlights, front parking sensors, and auto-dimming rear-view mirror), and my as-tested price came to $45,995. Expensive bit of kit, but the Niro EV does come with a long list of standard features including heated outside mirrors with power folding; seven-inch infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto; adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitoring, and push-button start. Plus, the Niro EV qualifies for the full $7,500 federal tax credit which may sway some buyers when it comes time to do their taxes. The Kia Niro EV is the first electric vehicle that I could see myself living with. It drives for the most part as a normal vehicle and offers enough range for most people. The big item you need to be aware of is charging. If you decide to purchase, be sure to get a 240V charger and check to see if there are any sort of fast chargers in your area. It may mean the difference between worry-free and a large amount of anxiety. Disclaimer: Kia Provided the Niro EV, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas
      Year: 2019
      Make: Kia
      Model: Niro EV
      Trim: EX Premium
      Engine: 356V Permanent Magnet Synchronous Electric Motor
      Driveline: Front-Wheel Drive, Lithium Ion Polymer Battery Pack
      Horsepower @ RPM: 201 @ 3,800 - 8,000
      Torque @ RPM: 291 @ 0 - 3,600
      Estimated Range: 239 Miles
      Curb Weight: 3,854 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: 
      Base Price: $44,000
      As Tested Price: $46,045 (Includes $1,045.00 Destination Charge)
      Options:
      Launch Edition - $1,000.00

      View full article
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