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Celebrating 110 years of Alfa Romeo heritage and history

There’s only one way to celebrate the 110th anniversary of a sports car brand and that is with a special edition that reflects the brand’s heritage and capabilities.

For Alfa Romeo, it was easy to select a candidate. Its Giulia Quadrifoglio has won praise around the world since it was unveiled in 2015 and holds a record at the Nurburgring for completing a lap in just seven minutes and 32 seconds.

Based on the Giorgio platform, the Giulia was the first in a new era of Alfa Romeos. Organising its best technical talents in dedicated “think tanks”, Alfa Romeo asked the planners and designers involved in the car’s development to set aside old rules and habits, to think outside the box and to “believe, dream and create”.

The Giorgio teams isolated themselves from the rest of the company to focus exclusively on the new platform. The resultant Giulia and Stelvio are the ultimate expression of “the mechanics of emotion” placing the driver at the heart of a thrilling driving experience.

The new Giulia GTA is inspired by its 1965 namesake, the ‘Gran Turismo Alleggerita’, developed by Autodelta and based on the Giulia Sprint GT.

Available in two versions, the Giulia GTA with four seats and the Giulia GTAm with two race seats, roll-bar and six-point harness, they will both feature the 2.9-litre V6 Bi-Turbo petrol engine used in the Quadrifoglio version, producing 540hp along with a raft of weight-saving solutions to remain true to the ethos of the original 1965 model.

Alfa Romeo engineers have worked to improve the aerodynamics and handling but, above all, to reduce the weight. The active aerodynamics were specifically studied to increase the downforce. These solutions contain technical know-how that comes directly from Formula 1, thanks to the synergy with Sauber Engineering and the use of the Sauber Aerokit.

The Alfa Romeo Giulia GTA and its extreme version, the Giulia GTAm, will be built in a limited edition of only 500 units in total, all numbered and certified and ready to take their place alongside their 1965 forerunner as one of the most sought-after collectors’ items.

While the limited edition GTA and the high-performance Quadrifoglio models set a new bar, Alfa Romeo’s driver-focused engineering has not been forgotten with other Giulia and Stelvio models.

“Alfa Romeos aren’t about just getting from A to B,” says Damien Dally, UK country manager for Alfa Romeo and Jeep. “There are plenty of brands that can do that okay. Alfa is about the journey from A to B. It is all about doing it in a way that is extraordinary. It’s for people who enjoy and want to enjoy driving. It isn’t for everybody, and that is part of its appeal.”

In the past five years, Giulia and Stelvio have become the most frequently awarded Alfa Romeo cars.

The standard Giulia model is derived directly from the Quadrifoglio, and not only aesthetically. The two share the same architecture, the same light-weight materials, most of the mechanics and even the same assembly line in Cassino.

With Stelvio, it was no simple challenge to make an Alfa capable of driving with agility on snow and dirt roads, without losing anything in terms of performance, handling and road holding. In other words, an SUV that can be driven like a sports saloon.

Dally says: “The embodiment of the Giulia and Stelvio is squeezing all of that heritage and history and bringing them up to date to meet the customer needs in 2020.

“The enhancements on MY20 are pretty much everything that needed to be addressed to bring the cars up to date to meet the competition.”

The interiors of both cars have been redesigned to highlight quality and elegance.

A new gear stick is now leather-clad with luminous highlights and a signature Italian flag at its base, while the rotary knob that controls the infotainment system has been updated to give an improved sense of precision.

Connectivity has become a key ingredient, requiring a redesign of the 8.8-inch touchscreen infotainment system to provide smartphone-like ease of use.

A suite of Mopar services for remote car management enhance the telematics offer, providing in-car connected services alongside mobile app interaction.

New advanced driving assistance systems (ADAS) mark the transition from the first to the second level of autonomy where the systems do not only inform the driver, in case of need, they also become active, enhancing vehicle safety.

The new range offers revised trim levels with entry level Super and Lusso Ti featuring silver exterior details and the Sprint and Veloce offering a sportier look with dark styling. All Giulia and Stelvio models will be complete with bi-xenon headlights, Alfa Connected Services, Apple Carplay and Android Auto compatibility.