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Hello,

Well, for I variety of reasons, I have decided to search for a used Giulia, rather than buy a new one. I have some questions on a number of topics. So as not to get confusing responses, I have decided to address each topic in a separate post.

I have my eyes on a couple of cars. I had decided that I wanted Rear Wheel Drive (RWD) rather than All Wheel Drive (AWD). I live in Southern Louisiana. It is flat and we very rarely have snow. So, no need for AWD. However, I found a pretty good deal on an AWD Giulia. I know that the car is a little quicker and that gas mileage is lower with AWD. Here are some additional questions:

1) Does AWD drive diminish the "sporty feel" of driving the car through curves, etc compared to RWD?
2) Is AWD more susceptible to breakdown, mechanical problems, and repairs?
3) Does AWD provide a particular advantage when driving in the rain?
4) Are there any other issues that are potential problems for an AWD Giulia?
5) Which would or do you prefer, RWD or AWD? Why?

Thanks for your help!

Wayne
 

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2018 Giulia Ti Sport Q4
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The question could also be, does someone who bought a Q4 wish they bought a Q2? Or the inverse - owners of Q2 wish they bought Q4?

Living in Michigan, I believe I made the right choice with Q4. The added ride height is the only bummer for me.

Here's more info on the AWD system: Alfa Romeo Q4 All-Wheel Drive System Details w/Photos

Good luck!
 

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I have a Q4 but not a Q2 so I cannot answer most of the questions.

One downside to Q4 happens if something does break. Everything is coupled together, so that pulling the engine requires dismantling the front suspension. That's Alfa's problem if your car is under warranty...

I believe that tires and tread depth are more critical for driving in the rain than AWD. AWD is really handy if you plan to take the car to somewhere that has snow (e.g. ski vacation in Colorado).
 

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I very much enjoy awd cars. Ive owned 12 audis.

I also enjoy rwd cars.

For the giulia i wanted the car due to its delicate, light, extremely quick ratio steering, and phenomenally light and agile handling. I wanted the 2.0l sport ti model with no sunroof specifically for this reason. To be able to have fun winding the car out on a routine basis on the streets without being at prison sentence speeds. So, I knew i wanted it to be rwd.

The other seemingly minor issue is that i do not care for the ride height of the q4. That may seem minor but with the incredible work alfa romeo put into the handling i knew i was not going to just throw some lowering springs on the car and potentially detract from the oem homologation.

So living in s fl and this being a fun toss about car that is lower powered, rwd it was going to be.

That said, if i were wanting awd for weather the alfa has a very sporty awd system that is rear biased and relatively lightweight. So if you want the added security doing hard acceleration in rain or snow, the q4 setup is a great option.

Hard to fault either option really. See whats right for you.

Mike
 

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The best part about the Alfa AWD system is that its AWD when it needs to be and RWD when it doesn't .... but the truth is you can't go wrong with either one of them
 

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Go and test drive both AWD and RWD and see which one sticks better to you.
Also bear in mind that either of them can have LSD option, on RWD it's Q2, on Q4 you should check configuration
 

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I test drove a Q4 before ultimately buying my Q2. I didn't notice any real difference in driveability or any lack of sporty feel in the Q4.


Ultimately I wanted the RWD Q2 because it just felt "right" to have a sports sedan like this in RWD. I'll likely regret it in winter if I get stuck driving the Q2, but until then I'll remain very happy with my purchase :)
 

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‘19 Giulia Ti Sport Q4
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In my estimation, having driven both AWD and RWD, for truly sporting driving, the Q4 is superior, if only because it reduces the frequency of traction- and stability control systems intervention.

It’s possible to feel the difference between drivetrains at the wheel; ride height and steering lightness are perceptible. While ostensibly better, in the course of driving in varied conditions, it seems merely different rather than better. I’m pretty deep in AWD experience, so I know what AWD allows in terms of performance, and I know how to drive to get it, so that certainly accounts for some of my preference, but I think that in any case it’s better to have more traction rather than having the car cutting throttle/power and braking in order to maintain lower traction. RWD Giulia feels very awkward and artificial to me for that reason.

It’s worth reiterating what was mentioned above that the AWD system in Giulia, Q4, runs as RWD and only utilizes AWD when traction is lost. Again, the traction controls in RWD Giulia work to prevent loss of traction in the first place, so the intervention threshold is of necessity lower in RWD. If you’re not really gettin’ after it, you may not notice, but if you’re wanting to fast and hard everywhere, the AWD advantage is very noticeable.

Similarly, the LSD available in the Ti Performance Package option, identified in RWD cars by the Q2 trunk badge and in AWD cars only by inspection, really pushes the traction control intervention threshold way out for both cars, and allows for hardier cornering and acceleration. I assume that’s true, anyway, as I’ve only driven Q2 and not plain RWD Giulias. I’ve owned both PP equipped and plain Q4s, so know the differences there quite well.

With regards to the question about whether Q4 helps with the rain, knowing about traction and how the Q4 system works, yes, it does improve rain performance is the only possible answer. It should also be needless to say that Q4 does not overcome poor tire performance; Q4 does not prevent something like hydroplaning, for example,

On the matter of Q4 repair issues, at 3 years out, we’ve not seen any increase in troubles with that drivetrain, no. At some point there must be additional cost associated with the extra parts and complexity, but when that happens, who knows? Will it be 5, 10, or 20 years down the road? I’ve had AWD cars from Ford, Mitsu, Subaru, and Audi, including one +15 year old Audi, and never had any notable service burden specific to AWD, so I don’t see that as a meaningful consideration for most ownership scenarios.

In sum, while Q4 definitely enhances performance capability, whether that’s any better is a matter of driving style. If one doesn’t exceed the limits of RWD in regular driving, then that’s pretty much that. It’s becoming increasingly popular to mod RWD models, too, in order to rectify the overly intrusive traction and stability control systems by disabling them, so that’s another way to consider the issues.
 

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I had a 2003 Jaguar X sedan, the sport version, with an AWD system I am sure was much less sophisticated than current ones. I really liked it. Of course, I had top quality tires, selected for their wet weather capability, and while I don't recall ever driving in snow, living in South Carolina, heavy rain is a real possibility. Other than a failed cat at 155K miles, the car and its AWD drivetrain was problem free. Wet weather security and traction was great, especially in low speed acceleration, like in city and traffic. I did thousands of track miles in other cars, but still feel I would not be "good" enough to really tell the difference in handling at race track speeds, but I suspect that traction at the apex exit would give the advantage to the AWD car.

Decades ago, when I was the track physician for Heartland Park, Topeka, when the IMSA's ran there, the first Audi cars with AWD just ran away from the field. Today, I believe an AWD car will always out corner a RWD car, with the ability to put the power down earlier and more fully.

If I were trying to decide between an RWD and AWD Alfa, I would get the latter.

With all that, I bought a new '18 QV and am pretty sure if I had had a choice between the two drivetrains, with the engine power and sophisticated systems now a days, I would have gotten the AWD version.

Unless one is a top-flight driver, and few of us are, (and I am certainly not) an AWD system will always be safer in handling.

NV
DSC_1122.JPG
 

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The best part about the Alfa AWD system is that its AWD when it needs to be and RWD when it doesn't .... but the truth is you can't go wrong with either one of them
Anf the fact that the Q4 software defaults the car with 100% to propulsion vs the competition , makes this beauty a true sports car, imo.
 

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I have a ‘17 RWD, in hindsight, I should have purchased AWD for the better transmission of power.
 
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Hello,

Well, for I variety of reasons, I have decided to search for a used Giulia, rather than buy a new one. I have some questions on a number of topics. So as not to get confusing responses, I have decided to address each topic in a separate post.

I have my eyes on a couple of cars. I had decided that I wanted Rear Wheel Drive (RWD) rather than All Wheel Drive (AWD). I live in Southern Louisiana. It is flat and we very rarely have snow. So, no need for AWD. However, I found a pretty good deal on an AWD Giulia. I know that the car is a little quicker and that gas mileage is lower with AWD. Here are some additional questions:

1) Does AWD drive diminish the "sporty feel" of driving the car through curves, etc compared to RWD?
2) Is AWD more susceptible to breakdown, mechanical problems, and repairs?
3) Does AWD provide a particular advantage when driving in the rain?
4) Are there any other issues that are potential problems for an AWD Giulia?
5) Which would or do you prefer, RWD or AWD? Why?

Thanks for your help!

Wayne
I own a ti sport Q4. Very good car and I prefer to have AWD. I have driven many RWD and the cars feel essentially the same since the Q4 is RWD all the time anyway. I won't go into much detail as some has been outlined here already. I have driven many Q4 models from a 155 and 164, although a different system, a system still developed by alfa. This new Q4 system really puts this car in it's own league. Both were legendary for those systems, hence my desire for one when Alfa returned to the US.

ANSWERING IN CAPS TO READ EASIER NOT YELLING. ;)
1) Does AWD drive diminish the "sporty feel" of driving the car through curves, etc compared to RWD?
NOT IN THE LEAST!
2) Is AWD more susceptible to breakdown, mechanical problems, and repairs?
NO, ALFA TENDS TO BUILD GREAT AWD SYSTEMS SO I AM NOT WORRIED MUCH. SURE IT MAY COST MORE TO FIX IF SOMETHING HAPPENS BUT OTHERWISE A STOUT SYSTEM.
3) Does AWD provide a particular advantage when driving in the rain?
SURE, MORE GRIP TO FRONT WHEELS IF NEEDED
4) Are there any other issues that are potential problems for an AWD Giulia?
NONE THAT I CAN THINK OF BESIDES A LITTLE MORE WEIGHT TO THE CAR, FROM MEMORY ABOUT 120LBS?
5) Which would or do you prefer, RWD or AWD? Why?
BOTH BUT I CHOSE Q4 BECAUSE I WANT THE GRIP IF THE CAR NEEDS IT EVEN ON DRY, ESSENTIALLY IT CAN BE SLIGHTLY QUICKER THAN THE RWD. FOR DRIVING THE Q4 IS WHERE IT IS AT. I WANTED THE LEGENDARY Q4 SYSTEM, ALTHOUGH NEW AS NOTED, ALFA HAS ALWAYS DONE A GREAT JOB WITH AWD, IN-FACT I THINK BETTER THAN QUATTRO. I HAVE OWNED A FEW OF THOSE INCLUDING AN 05' ALLROAD. DON'T FORGET THAT THERE IS A RWD Q2 AVAILABLE, THE Q2 IS FANTASTIC AS WELL. BASED OFF THE LEGENDARY Q2 DIFF. SYSTEM OF THE LATE 90'S/2000's. ALTHOUGH THIS GIVES YOU NO FRONT GRIP IT ACTS LIKE AN AWD SYSTEM IN A LOT OF WAYS. I'D LOOK AT BOTH. DRIVE BOTH AND THEN WEIGHT THE OPTIONS. NOW IF I COULD HAVE HAD THE Q4 WITH ACTIVE SUSPENSION AND THE REAR LIMITED SLIP DIFF, THEN I WOULD HAVE HAD THE ULTIMATE FOR THIS 2.0L CAR. I STILL BELIEVE THE Q4 TO BE BETTER EVEN STANDARD VERSION (NO LIMITED SLIP/PERF. PKG).

SO FAR MINE HAS BEEN FLAWLESS. EITHER ONE IS GREAT. DEPENDS ON WHAT YOU WANT BUT I'D GO FOR THE Q4.

Now, if I were to really want the best, it would be a Stelvio QV. It would have the motor, torq. vectoring diff and Q4 system. This is insanely perfect. Problem is I prefer the Giulia.
 

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I drive Giulias all day(Alfa mechanic) and bought a Q4 because it doesn't feel any different. Many all wheel drive vehicles will cause noticeable drivetrain drag at higher speeds vs their two wheel drive counterparts. For the first time ever, after driving Giulias, I didn't feel that difference at higher speeds. I do notice though that since you can lose traction in a 2WD Giulia much easier, traction control is much less intrusive in the AWD. Another nice aspect is I don't see any fuel economy hit on the AWD cars vs 2WD. And thus far have seen no failures of any AWD components on Giulias or Stelvios.
 

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In Portugal you can't get the 280hp (veloce) version with Q2, so I'm going with the Q4, from the test drives I didn't felt any difference, before reading this post I was a Q2 fan, and was a little sad that I got the Q4 model, but after reading your opinions now I'm all for Q4!
 

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In my estimation, having driven both AWD and RWD, for truly sporting driving, the Q4 is superior, if only because it reduces the frequency of traction- and stability control systems intervention.

It’s possible to feel the difference between drivetrains at the wheel; ride height and steering lightness are perceptible. While ostensibly better, in the course of driving in varied conditions, it seems merely different rather than better. I’m pretty deep in AWD experience, so I know what AWD allows in terms of performance, and I know how to drive to get it, so that certainly accounts for some of my preference, but I think that in any case it’s better to have more traction rather than having the car cutting throttle/power and braking in order to maintain lower traction. RWD Giulia feels very awkward and artificial to me for that reason.

It’s worth reiterating what was mentioned above that the AWD system in Giulia, Q4, runs as RWD and only utilizes AWD when traction is lost. Again, the traction controls in RWD Giulia work to prevent loss of traction in the first place, so the intervention threshold is of necessity lower in RWD. If you’re not really gettin’ after it, you may not notice, but if you’re wanting to fast and hard everywhere, the AWD advantage is very noticeable.

Similarly, the LSD available in the Ti Performance Package option, identified in RWD cars by the Q2 trunk badge and in AWD cars only by inspection, really pushes the traction control intervention threshold way out for both cars, and allows for hardier cornering and acceleration. I assume that’s true, anyway, as I’ve only driven Q2 and not plain RWD Giulias. I’ve owned both PP equipped and plain Q4s, so know the differences there quite well.

With regards to the question about whether Q4 helps with the rain, knowing about traction and how the Q4 system works, yes, it does improve rain performance is the only possible answer. It should also be needless to say that Q4 does not overcome poor tire performance; Q4 does not prevent something like hydroplaning, for example,

On the matter of Q4 repair issues, at 3 years out, we’ve not seen any increase in troubles with that drivetrain, no. At some point there must be additional cost associated with the extra parts and complexity, but when that happens, who knows? Will it be 5, 10, or 20 years down the road? I’ve had AWD cars from Ford, Mitsu, Subaru, and Audi, including one +15 year old Audi, and never had any notable service burden specific to AWD, so I don’t see that as a meaningful consideration for most ownership scenarios.

In sum, while Q4 definitely enhances performance capability, whether that’s any better is a matter of driving style. If one doesn’t exceed the limits of RWD in regular driving, then that’s pretty much that. It’s becoming increasingly popular to mod RWD models, too, in order to rectify the overly intrusive traction and stability control systems by disabling them, so that’s another way to consider the issues.
I have to agree with this. I test drove a Q2 with the full intention of purchasing a Q2 model. While waiting for "the financing manger" I drive a Q4 just for fun; and, there is most certainly a gain in road feel and performance. Can't explain it other than the car pulls/hugs the ground more in AWD. For me anyway it was enough of difference that I spent another 3 hours at the dealer negotiating an entirely different car; with great pleasure.
 

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From the replies here I can see why I had to special order a Q2 after test driving the AWD and refusing all offers the dealer made to have me buy it. I’m glad the Giulia is available In both configurations.
 

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It’s all your opinion. Test drove both.

I have a Q2 and have zero regrets. Three years ago I test drove the Q4 and loved it. Then I drove the Q2 later that day and felt it was superior, more sporty and planted with the staggered tires.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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I went from a miata 20 years ago to an Audi TT to a Q4 6 months ago. The Audi is front wheel biased. The Q4 feels far more like a Miata than the TT ever did. I don't feel any pushing that you get in a FWD biased car. The Q4 is awesome!
 

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It’s all your opinion. Test drove both.

I have a Q2 and have zero regrets. Three years ago I test drove the Q4 and loved it. Then I drove the Q2 later that day and felt it was superior, more sporty and planted with the staggered tires.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
I just want to highlight a couple of things you bring up, here...

One is that while it's certainly a matter of needs and preferences, it's not all opinion. The enhanced traction from Q4 compared to RWD to measurable, and we see it all the time in 0-60 times, for example. The performance advantages of AWD are manifold and have been proven on road and track.

Regarding your experience with Q4 and Q2, it's important to be clear that they are not the same as saying AWD and RWD. While Q4 is Alfa's AWD system, Q2 does not mean RWD, but rather Q2 is a Ti Performance Package equipped RWD car, particularly for the fact that the Ti PP includes a limited slip differential. The Q2 differential and designation pre-dates Giulia. Also, Q2 does not necessarily include staggered tires, which are optional depending on model. A Lusso can be spec'd with the Ti PP, thus receiving the Q2 designation, but will not include staggered wheels nor be able to be optioned with them.

Also note that Q4 cars can be fitted with staggered wheels, and Q4 Ti cars can be fitted with the limited slip diff (i.e. Performance Pkg).

So, when comparing the Q4 to Q2 in terms of driving dynamics, it's important to be clear about build specs, and saying a Q2 with staggered wheels feels more planted than a Q4 neglects to consider whether the Q4 had staggered wheels and/or the Performance Pkg, which are the key elements to that planted feel. As an owner of a staggered wheel + LSD Q4, I can pretty much assure you'd be astounded by the planted feel of a such a Giulia spec. Coming from a square wheel, non-PP Q4 previously, the planted feel was the first thing I noticed; the rear end felt stuck, almost, and my first impression was that the car felt less playful.
 

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Faster doesn’t always feel more fun.
 
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