Review - Alfa Romeo Giulietta
April 01, 2021
Many people still think that choosing a Giulietta (or any Alfa Romeo, for that matter) is an act of pure passion - one of those follow-your-heart kinds of picks that you can never regret, even when others strongly question your judgment.
But then there are naysayers - critics who argue that the Giulietta is no bigger than a Corolla and, aside from some rather schmick interior detailing, has about the same number of features.
Starting at $29,990 for the base model, drivers can expect none of the bells and whistles that even brands like Kia include in their entry-level vehicles. There’s no reverse camera, the seats (driver or otherwise) are not electric or heated. In fact, although rear-parking sensors come standard, you will have to upgrade to the Super TCT model to score front ones. Not great for getting into those tight spots.
But oh! What a looker! What a wonderfully irrational car to own! See, you don’t even know if this review is good or bad and, quite frankly, neither do we. Such is the Giulietta!
More than just a body
Although the new honeycomb front grille and bug-eye headlights framed by inset LEDs are beguiling, what sits just inside this five-door hatch is also worth a look in.
The mid-level Super TCT variant is probably the best buy as a suburban runaround. It comes with a six-speed twin clutch transmission and 1.4L engine. The engine gives off a good rumble (if that sort of thing floats your boat) but manages to keep fuel efficiency to a minimum at around 6.8L/100km.
Like its MiTo predecessor, the Giulietta comes with three driving modes, including Normal, Dynamic, and All-weather mode. Each mode changes the throttle response, suspension, and steering settings to suit the conditions outside. Although everyone likes to have options, we suggest you stick with Normal for around town.
As you’d expect from a semi-premium vehicle whose reputation is based on looks, the Giulietta presents very nicely on the inside. At the top end, the Veloce has the Alfa Romeo logo embossed into the integrated headrest, like a Medici family crest. The Manual and Super TCT come standard with fabric seats and a distinctive-though-not-ugly cannelloni pattern.
The dash is clean and solid. There’s a 5-inch touchscreen infotainment system. This connects with all your devices, but you’ll pay extra to upgrade to Alfa’s Uconnect voice activated navigation system.
What’s missing is a lack of storage options for things like phones and water bottles throughout the cabin. There’s no centre armrest in this car, which means no storage console. There is a rather strange pop-up compartment in the dash, however this fits approximately one pair of sunglasses and a packet of gum. None of the doors have bottle holders, however the fold-down armrest in the back does contain two decent-sized cup holders.
The Guilietta’s storage woes are mitigated by a whopping 350 litre boot. That’s a Bugaboo and at least ten shopping bags. Score!
5 specs you need to know
- Standard three year/150,000km warranty
- 5 star ANCAP and European NCAP rating
- Different driving modes allow the car to adapt to a range of settings
- Four door, five seat hatch
- Prices start at $29,990
- There’s enough of space to comfortably seat five, as long as all five passengers aren’t giant men
- The Giulietta offers a solid, semi-luxurious hatch best suited for drivers willing to go out on a limb to look that little bit better on the road.
- The brand has a history of being unreliable
- Lack of storage in cabin.