Alfa’s emo­tional res­cue

Alfa Romeo slows its fiery heart as it finds the mar­ket’s com­mon ground

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Road Test - NEIL DOWL­ING neil.dowl­ing@cars­guide.com.au

THE map of the hu­man heart con­tains a to­pog­ra­phy of pas­sion, pain, pride and prej­u­dice. It out­lines all the emo­tions of own­ing an Alfa Romeo.

The lat­est map from the Ital­ian, how­ever, marks a dif­fer­ent route than those pre­vi­ously fol­lowed. Its new car, the five-door fam­ily-sized Gi­uli­etta, de­tails an Alfa that has less of the pain and prej­u­dice, more of the pride, and in­vokes al­most as much pas­sion as its pre­de­ces­sors.

The third in­car­na­tion of the Gi­uli­etta name­plate is un­doubt­edly beau­ti­ful, sur­pris­ingly func­tional, has el­e­ments that in­di­cate dura­bil­ity but in be­com­ing a bet­ter car, had to give up some of its larrikin ways.

It’s more for the fam­ily but it still goes like stink.

VALUE

Not cheap. The Gi­uli­etta (pro­nounced Juli­etta, as if you have to be told) is tested here as the top-spec QV— Quadri­foglio Verde— is $41,990 plus on-road costs.

Com­par­ing that to its ri­vals (see fac­ing page) shows it up as be­ing a bit ex­pen­sive. But take the fea­ture list into ac­count and it’s rea­son­able value for money.

Stan­dard gear in­cludes the turbo en­gine, six-speed man­ual — sorry, no auto for the QV— and a re­ally so­phis­ti­cated, tight and beau­ti­fully tied­down chas­sis.

Safety is para­mount, there’s a Bose au­dio to rip your ears off, 18-inch spi­dery black al­loys to make your eyes wa­ter and a top-notch in­fo­tain­ment unit.

TECH­NOL­OGY

The QV gets a turbo-petrol en­gine but there’s a cheaper Gi­uli­etta with a clever 1.4-litre with so­le­noids con­trol­ling the in­take valves. Smart.

The QV is less tech­ni­cally en­dowed in the en­gine

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