£63,500 Price range
Alfa Romeo has promised a lot from its new flagship performance saloon – the Giulia Quadrifoglio – but does it have the mettle to take on the likes of the BMW M3, Mercedes C63 AMG, and the V6 S Maserati Ghibli?
Well, courtesy of a generous smattering of carbon fibre, numerous gaping air intakes, quad-exhaust pipes and huge phone-dial alloy wheels, it certainly looks like it does.
And, thankfully, performance is as healthy as the exterior suggests. Its turbocharged 2.9-litre V6 pushes out 503hp and 443lb ft of torque, sending power to the rear wheels via an eight-speed automatic gearbox with steering-wheel-mounted paddles.
Torque vectoring and stability control help rein in all that power and the systems can be tailored via Alfa’s DNA drive select, which offers four different modes – Natural, Dynamic, All-weather, and Race.
Primed in the latter of those four settings, the fast Alfa cracks 0-62mph in 3.9 seconds – quicker than all its aforementioned rivals. And, unlike the killjoy Germans, the Alfa isn’t limited – in fact, it’ll relentlessly surge onto a simply ludicrous top speed of 191mph where space (and laws) permit.
With figures like these, it’s not a surprise to learn Ferrari had a hand in the Quadrifoglio’s development. Alfa’s sister company set to work providing engine responses and handling more in keeping with one of its supercars – result! It means finding a rhythm is easier than it is in the edgy BMW M3, yet when set to Natural (read comfort) the Giulia also does a semi-convincing job of being a cosseting executive saloon.
With this breadth of talents, it’s easy to see why Alfa reckons the Quadrifoglio can tempt owners back to the historic brand – stealing sales from its German rivals in the process. And, with a competitive price tag of £59,000 when it hits showrooms in October 2016, there’s no reason why it can’t do just that.
Alfa Romeo could be planning to launch a svelte two-door version of its fastest model – check out our exclusive Giulia coupe render to see what it could look like.