2017 Alfa Romeo Giulia preview

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By now you’re probably tired of reading about Alfa Romeo’s new Giulia, whose introduction in the United States seems to be taking forever.

Recall Alfa Romeo showed us the Giulia—in high-performance Quadrifoglio trim—for the first time in the summer of 2015.

The good news is that the wait is almost over as production is finally underway. Production of U.S.-spec Giulias commences late in the second quarter of 2016 and the first examples should reach showrooms shortly after. They arrive as 2017 models.

ALSO SEE: Alfa Romeo Giulia production gets underway in Italy

At the top of the range is the Giulia Quadrifoglio and below this are Giulia and better-equipped Giulia Ti (Turismo Internazionale) models.

2017 Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio

2017 Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio

In an interesting move, Alfa Romeo decided to equip both the Giulia and Giulia Ti with the same engine, in this case a turbocharged 2.0-liter 4-cylinder delivering 276 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque. The engine is mated to a paddle-shifted 8-speed automatic and enables the Giulia to hit 60 mph from rest in 5.5 seconds and top out at 149 mph.

The Giulia Quadrifoglio gets a twin-turbocharged 2.9-liter V-6 that delivers 505 hp and 443 lb-ft. This model will be offered with either a 6-speed manual transmission or 8-speed automatic. It sprints to 60 mph in just 3.8 seconds and tops out at 191 mph. We’re told the car also laps the Nürburgring in just 7:39, claimed to be a record for a production four-door.

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Drive is to the rear wheels as standard and all-wheel drive is available for the Giulia and Giulia Ti. The rear-biased system, dubbed Q4, can direct up to 60 percent of the drive torque to the front axle when necessary. Giulias also get a drive modes selector allowing the driver to adjust dynamic vehicle settings. Wheel sizes range from 17 to 19 inches in diameter.

2017 Alfa Romeo Giulia

2017 Alfa Romeo Giulia

Underpinning the car is a modular platform code-named Giorgio. The platform provides a low center of gravity, low weight and a near perfect 50/50 weight balance. There’s plenty of aluminum in the construction and even some composite materials, such as in the rear cross member.

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The cabin design of the Giulia is every bit as crisp and clean as the exterior and, crucially, is centered on the driver with the main controls grouped together on the small steering wheel. In the center of the dash sits a screen used for the Connect 3D Nav infotainment system. A variety of interior combinations are available across the Giulia lineup, some of them including real carbon fiber.

We still don’t have pricing details though the Giulia should be competitive with German rivals like the BMW 3-Series and Mercedes-Benz C-Class. Alfa Romeo has previously stated the Giulia Quadrifoglio will cost around $70k.

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