You know if it has a Ferrari-derived 505-horsepower engine under the hood you're in for a good time. That said, a jaw-dropping WOW doesn't come close to cutting it when it comes to experiencing the 2017 Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio.
This Italian dream machine is just flat out fun to drive.
It was more than a little difficult to pry my hands off the leather-wrapped steering wheel at a recent press event at the Circuit of the Americas. As Alfa Romeo's most powerful production car ever, it's a true performance sedan in every sense of the word. So it's really no surprise it drove off with both Car of Texas and Performance Sedan of Texas honors at this year's annual Texas Auto Writers Association Auto Roundup.
There was no hiding the power under the hood immediately after hitting the F1 track's official launch line.
Its dual-exhaust system roared to life with the front-mounted all-aluminum 2.9L twin-turbo V6 engine that drives power to the rear wheels through an eight-speed automatic. It creates a near perfect 50/50 weight distribution. Add to that torque vectoring differential - which sends power to either rear wheel to hug those corners like you didn't know a sedan could - and the performance and handling on this four-door is well worth this $72,000 plus package in my book. It's fast, too, hitting zero to 60 in 3.8 seconds.
The Giulia isn't just out to seduce you with its performance, but also its looks.
It is, after all, Italian. The four-door in Vesuvio Gray Metallic is sleek, sporty and aerodynamic. Alfa Romeo equipped the front end with an active aero front splitter that is integrated into the front lower fascia. It dynamically balances and adjusts overall downforce. On straights, the splitter is closed to minimize resistance and drag. On corners, or when braking, it opens up to provide up to 220 pounds of downforce for optimum balance. The 19-inch staggered aluminum wheels are wrapped with Pirelli P Zero Corsa three-season high-performance tires. Despite the fact this is a performance sedan that impresses on every stretch of the track, you can easily see it as an everyday driver stuck in rush hour traffic, too.
After all, who wouldn't want to spend some quality time in this cockpit?
There's no identity crisis going on here. This car knows exactly what it is and the cockpit is clearly designed with the driver in mind; it's simple, elegant and to the point. You immediately notice the high level of bespoke craftsmanship and quality materials including detailed red accent stitching on the leather dash and doors. The bright red start-stop button is on the left of the leather-wrapped steering wheel, and I didn't even mind they didn't take into consideration I'm right-handed. Admittedly, I didn't spend a lot of time lamenting the lack of legroom in the back, because who are we kidding, I wasn't about to leave the driver's seat.
Photo Credit: Alfa Romeo