According to the great Jeremy Clarkson, you can’t be a true petrol-head until you’ve owned an Alfa Romeo. That always posed a problem for many American car enthusiasts. See, Alfa Romeo hasn’t really sold any cars here since the 90’s and even then they were very few and far between. Sure, we got the beautiful 8C Competizione, but that was only for a handful of lucky millionaires. The 4C has already come to the U.S. but even that is too expensive and exclusive for the average buyer. Fortunately, though, for us average ’Mericans, Alfa hasn’t forgotten us. The Giulia is coming in 2015 and it’s a rear-wheel drive sedan, most likely powered by one of Fiat’s turbo four cylinder engines, and a GTA version will follow it across the pond.
The Giulia is going to be the car that Alfa Romeo uses to reintroduce the brand to the US. It should be sized and priced to compete with the BMW 3 Series and the Mercedes C-Class . The big news however is the announcement of a "hot" version, called the Giulia GTA. The GTA’s main focus will be to take on the M3 and upcoming C63 AMG .
*Image shown here is of the standard version of the upcoming Giulia
Click past the jump to read more about the 2016 Alfa Romeo Giulia GTA.
There aren’t any official specs yet, but it will most likely employ the same 3.0-liter, twin-turbo V-6 in the Maserati Ghibli. The blown six in that puts out 345 horsepower, which is almost 100 horsepower less than the M3. However, if it were to use the 3.8-liter, twin-turbo V-8 from the Quattroporte GTS, that would give it 530 horsepower, which is more than enough firepower to take on the M3. However much power there will be, it will most likely go through Alfa’s commonly used double-clutch gearbox.
That much grunt paired with Alfa’s new-found knowledge of making cars light, and this could be a real weapon. Alfa plans to use a bunch of high-strength steel, aluminum, and hopefully, like it’s Bavarian competitor, carbon fiber in developing components like the hood and roof. It will also be rear-wheel drive, so it should handle like a proper sports sedan, something Alfa Romeo has done very well with in the past.
On top of all this techy goodness is the way it looks. The few leaked renderings of it look pretty great and expect it to look better in the flesh, all Italian cars do. The Giulia GTA might not be better than the M3 and it might not be faster than the C63 AMG, but it will most likely look and sound better than both. That’s what Alfa Romeos are all about, exciting you. They make you desire them more than their more sensible, often times even better competition. This GTA is shaping up to be that desirable, let’s just hope that it drives as well as it looks. And maybe it will last longer than a month before breaking; that would be nice too.
Why It Matters
While the 4C is Alfa’s first car to return to the States in quite sometime, it’s quite an exclusive car. The Giulia seems to be what’s spearheaded Alfa Romeo into the mainstream luxury car market. The success of this new Giulia will ultimately determine the fate of Alfa Romeo in the States. If it’s a success, then we’ll have more of a variety from the iconic Italian brand. This is what we should all be hoping for, because Alfa makes some of the most exciting and affordable cars. Sure, they break every five minutes, but you love them for those five minutes. If the Giulia fails, however, then Alfa will be forced to leave us yet again. A fate no car car enthusiast wants.
Alfa Romeo has made it very clear that the Giulia and its GTA variant are targeting the BMW 3 Series and M3, respectively. That’s a pretty tough mountain to climb, as the new F80 M3 is a very good car indeed. BMW went back to it’s roots by using a 3.0-liter straight-six good for 425 horsepower, sent through either a seven-speed, dual-clutch gearbox or a six-speed manual. For the first time on an M3, the I-6 uses forced induction via two turbochargers. Other M cars have been turbocharged before, but this is a first for the M3. As standard with all M Division cars, aside from the ridiculous X5 and X6 M, it powers only the rear wheels. The M3 is capable of 0 to 60 in around 4 seconds, depending on transmission (3.8 for DCT and 4.1 for manual) and is a real track monster. If Alfa wants to compete with this, it’s gonna have to make the GTA one helluva car.
Gallery BMW M3
Alfa Romeo hasn’t really mentioned the C63 as a competitor, but since the Benz competes with the M3 it ipso facto competes with the GTA. The C Class has changed for the 2015 model year but the current C63 has not. No specs have been released about what it will be like, but the current C63 has a de-tuned, 6.2-liter V-8, from the SLS AMG, making 451 horsepower. This current model uses a seven-speed automatic and powers the rear wheels, but the next-gen is likely to have the new nine-speed auto and AWD. I don’t really see the current C63 to be much of a threat to the GTA , it’s too old, and already seems slow and dated compared to the F80 M3. We’ll see when the new one comes out, but for now the Giulia GTA shouldn’t be to afraid of it.