The all-new 2017 Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio is nearly here, and it’s cruisin’ for a bruisin’. The headlines are compelling. A twin-turbo 377kW (505hp) V6 engine with 601Nm (443lb-ft) of torque, 0-100kmh (60mph) in just 3.8 seconds, a 307kmh (191mph) top speed and a scorching Nurburgring lap time of 7 minutes 39 seconds. The fastest ever four-door production sedan in the world. The Germans must be worried.
As the figures above suggest, the most impressive component of the Giulia Quadrifoglio is its powerplant. The Ferrari-derived twin-turbo 2.9L V6 is the most powerful engine Alfa Romeo has ever fitted to a production car and promises a nice, fat 601Nm (443lb-ft) torque band from 2,500 all the way up to 5,000rpm. All of this will be sent to the 19-inch rear wheels through a short throw six-speed manual transmission, via a carbon fibre drive-shaft. The 3.8-second 0-60 time provided by Alfa Romeo is undoubtedly impressive, but I suspect it would be even quicker with all-wheel drive.
I’m sure Alfa Romeo have their reasons for leaving it rear-wheel drive, perhaps for the weight-saving benefits or for better cornering balance, but the Giulia Quadrifoglio also has a bunch of features to help improve grip. It features an active front splitter controlled by two electronic actuators, a carbon fibre rear spoiler, plus a torque-vectoring limited-slip differential and adaptive damping. There’s also Brembo four-pot calipers on all four corners, with an optional carbon ceramic brake disc option available which also includes an upgrade to six-piston Brembos at the front.
The Giulia Quadrifoglio promises to offer a best-in-class power-to-weight ratio of 3.2kg (7lbs) per horsepower, a near-perfect 50/50 weight distribution and extensive use of lightweight materials. This includes a carbon fibre bonnet and roof, plus aluminium doors and guards.
There’s also going to be a few models sitting below the Giulia Quadrifoglio, all powered by a less powerful 205kW (276hp) turbocharged 2.0L 4-cylinder engine. Alfa Romeo has promised all-wheel drive models will also be available, though at this stage it won’t be optional on the range-topping Giulia Quadrifoglio.
Inside you’ll find a driver-focused cockpit, with liberal use of leather and Alcantara and plenty of carbon fibre, aluminium and accent stitching thrown into the mix. A thick-rim profile ‘Formula-1 inspired’ steering wheel sits in front of a full-colour 7-inch driver information display cluster, straddled by two large white-on-black face analog gauges. In the centre of the dash there’s also Alfa Romeo’s new ‘3D Navigation system’, which features a high-resolution 8.8-inch widescreen display with real-time vehicle performance pages and telemetry, plus 3D navigation which is operated by a rotary pad controller located behind the gear shifter.
As you’d expect, a car this good looking and this quick won’t be cheap. Prices are expected to kick off from around US$70,000 when the Giulia Quadrifoglio launches globally early next year.