The brand Alfa Romeo has become synonymous with luxury and a high class of Italian style, something that is prevalent in their Giulietta. Having recently received a significant price drop to increase appeal to the Australian market, the 2.0L diesel engine, known as the JTDm, comes in at $40,990 (plus on roads) for the TCT automatic that we recently tested.
Targeted as a family functional sports hatchback, the Giulietta faces direct competition with the category favourite, the Ford Focus. Let’s take a look at what Alfa is bringing to the competitive category in their stylish and powerful Giulietta.
While it may fall into the 5 door hatchback category, Alfa have cleverly concealed the rear door handles to create a seamless coupe exterior that features the brands trademark bold bonnet and grille. The elongated headlights, 17 inch Sports alloy wheels and the Giulietta’s lowered body all combine to create a very attractive car. However, it’s when you look at the rear of the car that the Giulietta’s appearance falters. Even with Italian design on their side, the rear inevitably resembles a squat version of just about every other hatchback out there.
Powered by a 2.0L turbocharged diesel engine the Giulietta puts out 125kW of power at 4000rpm and 350Nm of torque at 1750rpm resulting in fuel efficient driving (around 5-6L/100km) with a burst of power when needed. There is however a noticeable turbo lag. The JTDm is also equipped with the Stop/Start technology for more eco-friendly driving.
Once inside there is a lot of black! All black dash, black instruments and black seat are again another let down in what should be a sleek design. Once you get past the dark interior, there is a fair amount of space for 4 adults. Equipped with adequate storage, dual climate control, cruise control, and a multifunction display on the clearly displayed dash, all the standards are at your fingertips. In the audio department, the Giulietta boasts a massive 8 speakers with CD, MP3, Bluetooth and steering wheel controls. If you want to blast the music on the way to work, the Giulietta can certainly do that for you!
With a 5 star ANCAP rating, the Giulietta is jam-packed with all the latest safety features. All the most advanced driving assistance systems, such as VDC, are standard for all models, while Alfa Romeo’s most advanced technology, D.N.A., which acts on the Q2 Electronic Differential and the DST, is also included. The Giulietta is also equipped with rear parking sensors and an Anti-Slip Regulation device.
While many find comfort in the brand of Alfa Romeo, and rightfully so with their track record for performance, handling dynamics and driveability, it comes at a cost. In the form of the Giulietta, it’s in the $40,000 range.
In the same range, buyers should also look at the Ford Focus Titanium Hatch, powered by a 2.0L diesel engine. In this Ford Focus buyers can get Active Park Assist (automated parking), Ford KeyFree and SYNC systems, Sony system with 9 speakers, 5” multi-function display with sat-nav, 6 way power adjustable seat, sports seats with leather inserts, follow-me-home headlights and Ford’s impeccable safety features. For the same price, there are a considerable amount features as standard that Alfa do not offer.
However, it is all down to preference, brand loyalty and driving spirit. The Alfa Romeo Giulietta fits comfortably into the competitive market with its indefinable appeal to the driver within all of us.