2018 Alfa Romeo Giulia Sportwagon
The compact Alfa Romeo wagon could make a comeback after more than five yearsby Ciprian Florea, on
Introduced in June 2015, the Giulia is Alfa Romeo’s brand-newcompact executive sedan and the company’s first competitor for the BMW 3 Series and Mercedes-Benz C-Class in five years. The four-door revived the iconic Giulia nameplate, last used in 1978, and takes over from where the Alfa Romeo 159 left off in 2011, when the Italian automaker decided it no longer needs a compact. However, the Giulia is more than just an updated 159, featuring modern underpinnings, a premium interior, and powerful drivetrains that make it a worthy rival for the mighty 3 Series and C-Class. Unlike its predecessor, it also received a high-performance version that will compete against M3 and the AMG C63.
Although, for the time being, Alfa Romeo has only launched the sedan and the high-peformance QV model, more versions are likely underway. Having more than one body style for a nameplate is crucial in the current market, and the Italians need at least two more versions to stand a chance against its German competitors. One variant is the station wagon, which is still significantly popular in Europe. The second one is the two-door coupe, which would go against the BMW 4 Series and the Mercedes-Benz C-Class Coupe, but in the meantime we will talk about the grocery getter.
It’s a bit too early to say when the Giulia wagon will hit the market given that production of the sedan has barely commenced in 2016, but an official introduction is likely in 2017. A confirmation could occur by the end of the day, but nothing is certain right now — especially with no prototype spotted on public roads yet. Despite this, I am confident that Alfa Romeo is indeed working on a successor for the 159 Sportwagon and our artist created a rendering to go with the speculative review below.
Continue reading to learn more about the Alfa Romeo Giulia Sportwagon.
2018 Alfa Romeo Giulia Sportwagon
As seen in our rendering, the Sportwagon will share every bit of design from the nose to the B-pillar with the sedan. That’s common a feature for station wagons based on sedans and, in the Giulia’s case, it should play well for the grocery getter. The sedan’s bold design will not only give it an aggressive appearance, but will also help it stand out compared to other European wagons.
An additional quarter window will be added between the rear-door glass and the C-pillar, while the sporty rear fascia design will adopt a tailgate
It’s toward the rear where styling will change. An additional quarter window will be added between the rear-door glass and the C-pillar, while the sporty rear fascia design will adopt a tailgate. I think that the wagon will retain the sedan’s taillights and bumper design and combine them with a sloping roof, a narrow rear windscreen, and a spoiler at the top.
Should Alfa Romeo also launch a QV version of the wagon, which is very likely, we will see a more aggressive grocery getter with larger front intakes, a prominent splitter, front vents, a larger roof spoiler, and a diffuser flanked by quad exhaust pipes.
Note: Alfa Romeo Sedan pictured here.
The Sportwagon’s interior will also mimic the sedan’s and will feature the same "human-machine interface" concept. Design-wise, the dash and center console will be quite clean due all the basic controls, including the start button being built into the steering wheel and the infotainment system being control by just two knobs placed between the A/C vents. The new infotainment system has an 8.8 inch screen, active voice activation, and Apple iOS or Android connectivity.
Design-wise, the dash and center console will be quite clean due all the basic controls
The instrument cluster will come with either a standard 3.5-inch or optional seven-inch screen and display numerous parameters depending on the driving mode.
A huge step forward from its predecessor, the cabin will have just enough premium features to give products from BMW and Mercedes-Benz a run for their money. The seats and door panels will have fine leather, while wood grain will appear on the top of each door panel and on the dashboard with the Tan and Black interior option.
As is the case with all wagons, the Sportwagon will feature a significantly larger trunk compared to the sedan and the folding rear seats will enhance cargo room even further. Specs are obviously not available as of this writing, but expect the Alfa Romeo to offer about the same amount of space as its BMW and Mercedes-Benz competitors.
Note: Alfa Romeo Sedan pictured here.
The Sportwagon will most likely get its juice from the same engine offered in the sedan. For the moment, the four-door is confirmed with a gasoline unit and two diesel mills. The first one is an aluminum, 2.0-liter four-cylinder. It uses a MultiAir electro-hydraulic valve actuator system, a 2-in-1 supercharging system, direct injection, and pumps out 197 horsepower and 243 pound-feet of torque. Power is sent to the rear wheels through an eight-speed automatic transmission.
Should the Sportwagon come to the U.S., a scenario which unfortunately isn't very likely, only the gasoline model will be offered
On the diesel front, there’s a 2.2-liter four-banger offered in two flavors. The base engine cranks out 148 horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque, while the optional units packs 177 horsepower and 331 pound-feet of twist. Either variant of the diesel engine can be paired with the new eight-speed automatic or a six-speed manual transmission.
Should the Sportwagon come to the U.S., a scenario which unfortunately isn’t very likely, only the gasoline model will be offered. In the sedan, the U.S.-spec four-pot generates more oomph than its European counterpart, being rated at 276 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque. A Q4 all-wheel drive system is also available for this version.
The high-performance QV version will use a 3.0-liter V-6 derived from the Maserati Ghibli’s and co-developed with Ferrari. This unit delivers a whopping 505 horsepower and 443 pound-feet of torque and enables the sedan to hit 60 mph in only 3.8 seconds. Transmission choices for this unit include a six-speed manual and an eight-speed automatic.
With the Giulia sedan retailing from €35,500 (about $40,000) in Italy, the wagon is likely to fetch around €37,000 (about $41,700) before options. U.S. pricing for the sedan is not yet available, and estimating a sticker for the wagon is difficult at this point.
Arguably the most popular premium compact wagon, the 3 Series Sports Wagon shares most of its features with the sedan. One of the very wagons available in the U.S., the Bimmer can be had with a powerful yet efficient 2.0-liter four-cylinder rated at 240 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque on this side of the pond. In Europe, however, BMW offers a wide array of drivetrains, with gasoline units ranging from 134 to 326 horses and oil burners from 114 to 308 ponies. Prices start from $42,650 in the United States and €32,200 in Europe.
Find out more about the BMW 3 Series Sports Wagon here.
Based on the latest-generation C-Class, the Estate is arguably the most modern wagon you can buy in this class, featuring the company’s latest technology and gorgeous interior that debuted in the sedan. Unlike the 3 Series Sports Wagon though, it is not available in the United States. In Europe, the Estate can be had with an array of gasoline and diesel engines, with most of them packing four angry cylinders. The oil burners deliver between 115 horsepower and 204 horsepower, while the gasoline units pump 156 horsepower in the entry-level model. A 333-horsepower V-6 is also available. The wagon retails from €33,439 in Germany.
Read more about the Mercedes-Benz C-Class Estate here.
In a market dominated by BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Audi, and with Volvo posing little threat with the current V60, the Giulia Sportwagon looks like a breath of fresh air. The sporty design, the well-appointed interior, and the powerful engines give it the right weapons for a strenuous battle against the 3 Series and C-Class and, while it might not make a big impact at first, the Giulia has what it takes to steal customers from the more popular German brands. But, as interesting as the Sportwagon may seem, we still need official confirmation from Alfa Romeo. Until then, it’s just a rendering and a wish for a more diverse compact wagon segment.