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Discussion Starter · #1 ·


I have now had my Giulia TI for 5 days now so thought this would be a good time to write a detailed review of my opinions of the car overall and how it has been so far.

Since picking up the car on Saturday (did not get to drive it at all on Saturday except to home) I have put about 330 miles on the car. Most of these miles has been pure highway miles, but i have squeezed a few spirited runs in between, but have tried to be mindful of the break in period so as not to abuse her before that period ends. So here are my thoughts by major areas:

Exterior
This car is simply gorgeous, nothing else like it on the road. I have gotten so many looks while driving down the road as well as when i have stopped somewhere I have had quite a few random people come up and ask me about the car. The reaction has been very amazing and the people I have spoken with have been very excited about it and and very curious. I have made it a point to talk to everyone that has stopped me so at one point I was out in the parking lot for 10 minutes going over the car to several different people.

The looks are aggressive, especially with the 19' wheels and the red brake calipers. The car has such different looks to it as you walk around it. The front is very unique and really sets the tone from a design standpoint. Then you walk to the side and it has this short/squat profile which is then exaggerated with the wheels, very cool look to it. The rear is different, but has a somewhat similar feal to other cars out there. Overall the looks of this car are so different that it really does not look like anything else on the road, I think Alfa hit a home run from this standpoint.

I got the MonteCarlo Blue color, which I am definitely enjoying. The interesting part is when it is parked out in the sun, depending on which angle you are looking at it, it almost looks purple.

There is only two things about the exterior that concerns me, the first being the B-Pillar location is weird in that it does make it a little difficult to get in and out of and that the car is really low to the ground which makes for interesting looks on my face on trying to get into my driveway and going over speed bumps and steep entries.

Steering
I have decided that this is the best steering system i have ever experienced in a car. I absolutely LOVE the steering feel/weight/turn radius for the car. Enough said!

Suspension
Pretty much all the miles have been highway miles but I will say that it is not a bruising ride by any means, even with the 19's on it. Couple of people that have ridden in it have all said it rides very smoothly. My wife who has no clue why anyone would buy anything sporty was impressed with the way it rode as she immediately thought it would be a rough ride. We are headed to the mountains next weekend so I will get a good opportunity to really try out the suspension on this car.

Engine
This was the only area that i was leary about in this car. I have had several cars with Turbo 4's in them. My first thought after driving them is that i hate the lack of low end power and that when the turbo kicks in it sort of has a Jekyll and Hyde personality(experience from BMW/Audi). While this particular engine does lack a little on the low end side of things, especially from a standstill, once it is moving though the power delivery is very impressive. It is no QV, but it will get up and go rather nicely. In driving it on the highway it is very quiet but the one thing i noticed (even in dynamic mode) that cruising at 75 MPH the RPM's are just below 2 K which is impressive for a Turbo 4 as best i can recall. Overall i have been very pleased with the engine but wish it had a little more on the low end of the spectrum.

Auto Stop/Start
This feature is something i am used to now, but it is annoying as all **** can be in this car. The car cuts off fine, but there is definitely a wait period once you take your foot off the brake before it wakes up. Also in previous cars i have driven and had if you were in manual mode start/stop would disable but not this car. It will still go into sleep mode and then once you take your foot off the brake the screen and AC goes off briefly and then the car starts back up. There is no redeemable quality to this feature in this car.

Transmission
I have no thoughts on the whole manual vs. automatic thing. I like both, but living in Atlanta i much prefer an automatic over the manual just to save my knees from the traffic **** that is this town. The transmission here is really nice and works very well. I have noticed that in D mode the shifts are a little harder and crisper but while in N or A modes they are much smoother. Overall I have no issues with the transmission, works like it should and brings power at the right time. The part I am struggling with are the column mounted paddles. While the paddles themselves have a nice solid feel and movement to them i am coming from cars that had them steering wheel mounted so my first natural instinct was to pull it where my hand was while making a turn, which meant i downshifted instead of upshifted like i wanted to. I have yet to figure out the best way to use these without being awkward as i keep my hands in the 3 and 9 position on the steering wheel. If anyone has thoughts or suggestions on the best way to do this I am all ears. Hard to unlearn and relearn a new technique especially since i have no new one to learn yet.

Seats
Italian Leather with stitching is a thing of beauty, leave it to them to know how to do that in the best way possible. I am a little on the bigger side so when i got in the car (mine has the sport seats) i was a little surprised on highly bolstered the sides were on the chest and the legs. It took a couple of days to get used to, but I have to say I am really enjoying them now. I like the fact that i am not sliding around in the them. The lumbar support is good and adjustable to my liking (important for me as I have a bad back). This not necessarily because of the seat, but I really wish the seatbelt point on the B-Pillar was adjustable from a height perspective. The way they have located it is very low for me so i have to do some contortions to get the seatbelt on overtime i get in the car. I really would have thought it would be height adjustable.

Harman Kardon
I had read several posts about the HK system but did not get too caught up in it, but now having used it for a few days I would have to say that I am a little underwhelmed for a system that supposedly has 900 Watts of power. Overall sound quality is good, but not great, i have not tried to tune it yet but will play with it this weekend. Interestingly enough i started to hear crackling sounds and at first thought it was small debris hitting the windshield but quickly realized it was coming from the speakers. I remember reading that there is a break in period for the system, hope that is the case, as I am not that impressed with it. The Meridian system in our Jag was less power but sounded way better than this thing.

Nav/Infotainment Screen
Overall i love the way the screen is integrated into the dash. I hate the way most cars just stick a square/rectangle box on the dash somewhere. Very nicely done. The screen is sharp and legible even in the sun from what i have experienced so far. Now when it comes to operation that has left a little to be desired. My biggest gripe is that around the control knob i really wish they had put 4 buttons around it to jump to Nav/Radio/Media/Phone or something like that. I HATE with a passion that i have to hit Menu then choose what i want and push down on the controller to get to it. If I am driving, why the **** do i need to go thru three steps to switch between modes which just distracts you longer from what you should be really doing. I have tried out the split screen, but not sure that I like it that much. It seems a little weird to see two very different types of information on the same screen. Still on the fence about this feature. Not sure if others have experienced this or not, but if I am in Nav mode and cut the car off and then turn the car back on the nav screen takes about 30 seconds before it comes back on. Even more frustrating is that while driving down the road and having the nav screen on it is randomly going green and then redrawing the roads back on it. Very weird, if anyone has any insights on this I would greatly appreciate it. The other odd thing is that i paired my phone but sometimes i can choose BT as the playback method in the media setting and sometimes i can not. If i plug into the USB port it works fine, but it connects the phone part each time i turn the car on, but i don't always get the choice to use BT to do music playback. Look and feel is great, but some of the execution bits are lacking, hopefully CarPlay and Android Auto is coming soon.

Other Random Thoughts
If you are someone looking for an American sized mid size car, go look somewhere else. This is truly a European car. There is not a lot of storage space in the car along with the trunk being small and the opening to the trunk is a little weird in the first place. This car fits you like a glove which also means the storage space also fits like a glove. I recall reading reviews that said the car has cheap bits of plastic, maybe I don't have as discerning of an eye, but it seems fine to me and not really from a quality and feel standpoint much different than our BMW X3. I feel like car reviewers expect/look for perfection in all of these areas. Steering wheel itself is awesome, good quality materials, love the flat bottom and having the start/stop button on the steering wheel. The speedometer and rpm gauge are nicely done, the screen in the middle is ok, but if anyone knows what the bullseye looking screen is in D mode in that middle screen please educate me as i have not figured it out yet. On that same note, if someone can tell me why there is a picture of the earth when in A mode that would be helpful as well. Heated seats and steering wheel work nicely and get to a nice temperature. AC/Heat works great no issues there. Have not tried Remote Start but a little confused as to why there is no app for the car so i can start it from my phone instead of having to use the remote as well as set the temp, etc in the car. I filled up gas in the car for the first time today so after opening the fuel tank i noticed that the whole spout or whatever you want or should be called is slanted outward towards the rear which makes it awkward to fill gas in the car.

Overall
I absolutely LOVE this car. It is like nothing else on the road, definitely outdoes a BMW at its own game, especially the steering. Sure there are minor quibbles, but like anything else in life, you take the good with the bad. In this case the good far outweigh's any of the bad.
 

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Congrats and thanks for the great review! I reached pretty much the same conclusions as yours from my test drive - stunning looks, superb steering and ride quality, great seating/ergonomics. Basically: it's amazing!

Question though: when in manual mode, have you ever experienced lag in gear change? As if it hesitates for a bit. Gear shifts were all super fast during my test drive, but I've heard people complain about occasional slow response time. Just wondering how frequent this would happen and under what possible conditions.

As for the center screen info, if I remember correctly the "bullseye" in D mode shows the G force and direction of acceleration. The "Earth" in A mode, probably just a reminder for the driver to save fuel and in tern save Mother Earth... lol
 

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They really did a nice job with this car and it has shown already to be a contender if not leader in some segments in its class. Thanks for the review!
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Congrats and thanks for the great review! I reached pretty much the same conclusions as yours from my test drive - stunning looks, superb steering and ride quality, great seating/ergonomics. Basically: it's amazing!

Question though: when in manual mode, have you ever experienced lag in gear change? As if it hesitates for a bit. Gear shifts were all super fast during my test drive, but I've heard people complain about occasional slow response time. Just wondering how frequent this would happen and under what possible conditions.

As for the center screen info, if I remember correctly the "bullseye" in D mode shows the G force and direction of acceleration. The "Earth" in A mode, probably just a reminder for the driver to save fuel and in tern save Mother Earth... lol
I have definately experienced the issue with the transmission, but as best as i recall it was really only from 1 to 2 when coming from a dead stop and having the auto start/stop mode engaged. The shifts in D mode are definately "hard" compared to N or A modes, but i like it and it does not bother me. I only noticed this in D mode where as did not get the same thing from the N or A mode. I have not experienced it each time, but have noticed it a couple of times.

Thanks for the info on the bullseye screen, that is what i thought, but alas there are no markings on it to tell you that. The whole Earth thing is interesting, but i can roll with that.
 

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Thanks for the writeup. My tentative build will be MC Blue with yellow calipers.

I just test drove Ti w/19" Sport Pack yesterday and really liked it. (thanks @DaneARFOM;)
I'm coming from 2012 335i/6MT and the car felt nice and solid and very tight/planted. I've never been 100% happy with my 335i as the suspension seems too soft and too much body lean. I have the dynamic suspension and even in Sport mode it gets somewhat tauter but also a fair bit harsher. The Giulia felt firm and nice all around. The engine felt fine as well, thought didn't really get on it during the short drive.

I thought the interior and switchgear were fine, but the one thing I think Alfa is a bit behind on is the camera and tech.
The backup camera view is fairly small and looks like a base quality analog camera. It's close to par with the one on my 5 year old 335i but not on the same level as current gen cameras. I'll also miss not having top-view cameras - very handy for making sure you're lined up in parking spaces, etc. I'll also miss not having option for HUD. But, I definitely think they had the priorities right - get the engine/suspension/quality right and then upgrade the tech over time.

Thanks for the info on the bullseye screen, that is what i thought, but alas there are no markings on it to tell you that. The whole Earth thing is interesting, but i can roll with that.
Here is a screenshot from the manual on the G-meter:
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for the writeup. My tentative build will be MC Blue with yellow calipers.

I just test drove Ti w/19" Sport Pack yesterday and really liked it. (thanks @DaneARFOM;)
I'm coming from 2012 335i/6MT and the car felt nice and solid and very tight/planted. I've never been 100% happy with my 335i as the suspension seems too soft and too much body lean. I have the dynamic suspension and even in Sport mode it gets somewhat tauter but also a fair bit harsher. The Giulia felt firm and nice all around. The engine felt fine as well, thought didn't really get on it during the short drive.

I thought the interior and switchgear were fine, but the one thing I think Alfa is a bit behind on is the camera and tech.
The backup camera view is fairly small and looks like a base quality analog camera. It's close to par with the one on my 5 year old 335i but not on the same level as current gen cameras. I'll also miss not having top-view cameras - very handy for making sure you're lined up in parking spaces, etc. I'll also miss not having option for HUD. But, I definitely think they had the priorities right - get the engine/suspension/quality right and then upgrade the tech over time.



Here is a screenshot from the manual on the G-meter:
I must have missed that in the manual, but in the few times i have used that screen i never saw anything that shows a number attached with it. I guess i have not pulled enough G's yet for it to even register. I must be slowing down as i get older!

I agree with your assessment as well, 100% spot on. The tech needs some work, but it is definately not a deal breaker in purchasing this car, well at least for anyone who enjoys "driving" which seems to be a dwindling number of people these day's.
 

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G...
GREAT INPUT and i agree with a lot of what you said....
You can make the seats wider/narrower with one of the buttons on the side of the seat.
LOVE MY ALFA!!!!

G and I got ours at the same time!! Everyone was drooling over our cars!!
God bless Alfa romeo. I even bought a shirt last night from their website, but then realized they wanted $13 for shipping so got same one on amazon for less!!!

Enjoy the giulia. If have any doubts... Just go get one!! Best decision i've made on a car so far!

Toto
 

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Great write-up! I put about 10 miles on a Ti w/paddles then special ordered a blue w/cream Ti and the Ti Performance package. You are now an Alfa Romeo Ambassador. Congratulations.

As already mentioned, the bulls-eye is a G force meter. On the 4C, you can toggle through different screen displays by pressing the button on the end of the wiper stalk. Is this possible in the Giulia also?

I think transmission performance is controlled with the DNA selector and whether it's in in auto or manual mode. My one test drive was in dynamic/manual and the torque converter was nice and firm.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Great write-up! I put about 10 miles on a Ti w/paddles then special ordered a blue w/cream Ti and the Ti Performance package. You are now an Alfa Romeo Ambassador. Congratulations.

As already mentioned, the bulls-eye is a G force meter. On the 4C, you can toggle through different screen displays by pressing the button on the end of the wiper stalk. Is this possible in the Giulia also?

I think transmission performance is controlled with the DNA selector and whether it's in in auto or manual mode. My one test drive was in dynamic/manual and the torque converter was nice and firm.
You are correct, it is controlled with the silver button on the wiper stalk. As best as i can tell there are three screens, Speedometer, basic fuel economy info (as in three numbers) and then the G Meter (this third screen is different in the three modes). Not the most interesting information on any of these screens minus the speedometer which is what i leave it on as it seems that most new cars speedometer's are actually useless to get a quick glance of your speed.
 

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Harman Kardon
I had read several posts about the HK system but did not get too caught up in it, but now having used it for a few days I would have to say that I am a little underwhelmed for a system that supposedly has 900 Watts of power. Overall sound quality is good, but not great, i have not tried to tune it yet but will play with it this weekend. Interestingly enough i started to hear crackling sounds and at first thought it was small debris hitting the windshield but quickly realized it was coming from the speakers. I remember reading that there is a break in period for the system, hope that is the case, as I am not that impressed with it. The Meridian system in our Jag was less power but sounded way better than this thing.
Has anyone been able to compare the Harman Kardon Audio system to the base audio system. I'm curious if its even worth the $900?

I have a HK system in my SAAB and it sounds no better than the base system in my Volvo.
 

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As already mentioned, the bulls-eye is a G force meter. On the 4C, you can toggle through different screen displays by pressing the button on the end of the wiper stalk. Is this possible in the Giulia also?
Yep, in dynamic mode, press the menu button on the wiper stick and you gets the g's

Also, in regards to the infotainment, you can click up on the knob as a shortcut to different areas
 

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@Poster...thanks for the write-up...
just as a base line, what car(s) did you own prior to the Ti?
Thanks & Congratulations!
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Yep, in dynamic mode, press the menu button on the wiper stick and you gets the g's

Also, in regards to the infotainment, you can click up on the knob as a shortcut to different areas
Hmm. i tried that it still does not display the G's

Got tip on the infotainment, will give that a try when i take the car out later.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
@Poster...thanks for the write-up...
just as a base line, what car(s) did you own prior to the Ti?
Thanks & Congratulations!
Thank you and here are the cars I have owned or used significantly in my driving life

1985 Toyota Minivan -my first car and hand me down from the parents
1990 Pontiac Bonneville SSE (Mom's car but i drove it quite a bit)
1992 Geo Storm
1994 Ford Probe GT
1996 Ford Explorer Eddie Bauer (Sister's car, but we swapped cars for a year due to knee problems so i could not drive the Probe as it was a manual)
1998 Ford Taurus SHO
2000 Mustang GT
2001 Honda Accord Coupe V6
2005 Honda Accord Sedan 4 cylinder (i traded this one in for the Ti, belonged to my wife)
2005 Saab 93 Aero
2009 Acura MDX
2011 BMW X3 (wife's current car)
2013 Jaguar XF
2017 Alfa Romeo Giulia TI
 

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Congrats gjain76 and thank you for your great review.
I own an Alfa Romeo 159 2.2 and I am thinking of getting the Giulia ti version in a few days. I believe that those 19" wheels look great but i don't know about their comfort. I would like to have a car for every day driving in roads that are not so smooth. This is the reason why i also look for the 18" turbine rims, which are beautiful but i think not as much as the 19". (my 159 has 17" wheels).

In your post i read that it is still a comfortable car with the 19". Have you driven this beauty in more "difficult" roads ? Do you think that maybe i will regret the 19" option ?
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Congrats gjain76 and thank you for your great review.
I own an Alfa Romeo 159 2.2 and I am thinking of getting the Giulia ti version in a few days. I believe that those 19" wheels look great but i don't know about their comfort. I would like to have a car for every day driving in roads that are not so smooth. This is the reason why i also look for the 18" turbine rims, which are beautiful but i think not as much as the 19". (my 159 has 17" wheels).

In your post i read that it is still a comfortable car with the 19". Have you driven this beauty in more "difficult" roads ? Do you think that maybe i will regret the 19" option ?

I live in the South so the roads are pretty good around here, took it to Asheville NC 2 weekends back and the roads were good there as well, so hard to say. My wife does not like it but she likes cars with soft rides anyways so I would not base my opinion on hers. On the few patches of rough roads in dynamic mode you can definately feel it, but those same roads in N or A mode are much softer. I would definately recomend you drive it and drive it in the different modes as that may influence your decision on which one to get.

Personally i am glad it got the 19" as i have no issue with the ride and plus they just look WAY better than the 18" s to me. Gives the car a much more aggressive look.

Good luck.
 

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I live in the South so the roads are pretty good around here, took it to Asheville NC 2 weekends back and the roads were good there as well, so hard to say. My wife does not like it but she likes cars with soft rides anyways so I would not base my opinion on hers. On the few patches of rough roads in dynamic mode you can definately feel it, but those same roads in N or A mode are much softer. I would definately recomend you drive it and drive it in the different modes as that may influence your decision on which one to get.

Personally i am glad it got the 19" as i have no issue with the ride and plus they just look WAY better than the 18" s to me. Gives the car a much more aggressive look.

Good luck.
Does your Ti have active suspension? And does it have a control switch to adjust the suspension separate of the DNA selector?

The one I test drove did. Salesman explained it to me in that fashion. I didn't actually play with it though.
 
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