A wall may be ordinary and unnoticeable but a flower is associated with beauty and you won’t truly know how beautiful until you get close. Colloquially a Wallflower chooses to stand back rather than getting involved as they prefer to observe and have no desire to be the centre of attention.
This Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio is a wallflower of the automotive world. A slightly awkward Italian four-door sedan that can blend into the background, but take a closer look and you will see this flower wants to bloom.
The external signs are evident. The stunning tri-coat paint in Montreal Green (that I could not get to photograph nicely, it looks even better in real life!), carbon fibre on the front splitter, side skirts, and the rear wing, the 19″ 5-Hole Alloy Wheels, which literally look like a flower, and the most obvious sign of all the four-leafed clover placed on the side panels.
Under the sculptured bonnet is a very special V6 bi-turbo petrol engine that has 375kW of power and 600Nm of torque channelled through an 8-speed automatic transmission to the rear wheels. The previous time I drove the Giulia I somehow overlooked Race mode in the most part. I did not make the same mistake again and it was then that this wallflower shined!
The Alfa can be taily in a straight line with a loss of traction from the rear tyres in first and second gears under hard acceleration and sideways action out of the corners when provoked. If you have the gearbox in auto mode it will change up at 7,000rpm as indicated on the analogue taco. Or in manual mode you can take control with the large Aluminium paddle shifters and, on the downshift, you can aggressively pull down until second gear and then wait for the computer to allow the final downshift. Officially the Giulia Quadrifoglio will accelerate from a standing start to 100km/h in 3.9 seconds and on to a top speed of 307km/h.
In addition to awakening this introverted sedan, Race mode use also made a difference to the amount of fuel I used. For my previous drive in the Competizione Red Giulia Quadrifoglio I used 11.7L/100km and this time it was a full 2.0 litres more at 13.7L/100km. The official combined fuel consumption is 8.2L/100km.
Besides the frisky dynamics, I particularly liked the engine note in Race mode, because in the other modes the exhaust was not all that conversational. If you do not prefer a firmer ride in Dynamic or Race mode, you can soften the dampers independently by using the button on the centre of the drive mode rotary selector. This Alfa DNA Pro system lets the driver select from Dynamic, Natural, and Automatic, because Race mode should be kept for special occasions only.
The optional Sparco Carbon Fibre front seats fitted to my Giulia were snug and I loved the dual use of material, black leather and Alcantara, with the contrasting green stitching and the Alfa Romeo logo embossed on the head rests. The front seats have manual adjustment for forward/back and recline and power adjustment for the seat height and they are heated.
The Sparco seats match nicely with the carbon fibre trim around the door pulls, over the centre console, and the steering wheel. I also appreciated the rotary dials for setting the climate control temperature and speed rather than using ‘buttons’ on the infotainment screen.
The steering wheel is like the stamen of the flower embellished with Alcantara and leather, a big red start/stop button, and another lucky four leafed clover. The voice control button on the steering wheel is designated with an androgynous silhouette and the functionality worked well for me when I asked it to change the radio station, but it was no good for making phone calls and the sat nav destination input was not available.
The Giulia Quadrifoglio has an older style 8.8-inch infotainment screen with wired Apple CarPlay/Android Auto compatibility. Under arm rest is wireless phone charger, wireless key charger, one USB-A, one USB-C, one 12V, and an AUX jack and in another cubby at front of centre console there is another 12V and one USB-A. There are two cup holders in centre console with grippy sides and a rubber mat lining them for easy cleaning, but the front door cubbies are not suitable for drink bottles.
The head and leg room in rear seats is adequate for two adults and for younger passengers there are two ISOFIX/three rear tether child seat restraint points, but only enough width across the back seat for two car seats. The centre seat folds down as an armrest with two grippy cup holders at the front, which is good because the cubbies in the rear doors are also not suitable for drink bottles.
Rear passengers get two central rear air vents with individual on/off and direction control and below these is one USB-A port. The best thing about the rear seats though is the view you get of the Sparco Carbon Fibre Seats, which are gorgeous! Only problem is if you have young children, the seat backs may need to be protected somehow so the youngsters don’t kick and scratch them!
The Alfa boot is a good size for the weekly shop with a power assisted boot opening and manual close. There are four substantial tie down points for the cargo net and two lights with a tyre repair kit under the boot floor. If more storage room is required the rear seats have a 40:20:40 split fold mechanism with a manual release for this in the boots space.
The Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio does not have an ANCAP safety rating, but does come with six airbags and a long list of advanced driver safety assist systems. These include Autonomous Emergency Braking, Lane Keep Assist, Active Blind Spot Assist with Rear Cross Traffic Alert, and Active Cruise Control. You also get Reverse Parking Camera with Dynamic Lines and front and rear parking sensors. Plus, auto lights, auto wipers and auto high beam control.
From 22nd April 2022, Alfa Romeo introduced a 5 Year / Unlimited kilometre factory warranty coverage with 5 years roadside assistance on all new Alfas sold in Australia. The service interval for the Giulia Quadrifoglio is every 12 months or 15,000km, whichever occurs first.
A wallflower will blend in, become almost invisible to others, and actively avoid being in the limelight. However, if you take the time to get to know them their effervescent personality will shine through. This time around with the Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio I feel I connected with this sedan just a little bit better and learned more about its real character.
The price for the Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio has increased to $151,700 excluding on-road costs. As tested with 19″ 5-Hole Alloy Wheels ($1,300), Sparco Carbon Fibre Seats ($8,250) and Tri-Coat Paint ($3,650) in Montreal Green, the Giulia I drove was $164,900 excluding on-road costs. Price your Giulia Quadrifoglio online or visit your preferred Alfa Romeo dealer for more information.
|The dynamic V6 engine||No ANCAP safety rating|
|Sparco Carbon Fibre front seats||Young children may scratch back of front seats|
|Warranty period has increased to 5 years||Door cubbies not large enough for drink bottles|
Photographs by Driven Women Magazine.