PLAGUED BY RELIABILITY ISSUES THE ICONIC ITALIAN ALFA ROMEO BRAND WAS CHASED FROM AN UNFORGIVING US MARKET IN 1996
SINCE THEIR RETURN IN 2014 THEIR CARS—ESPECIALLY THE FEATURED GIULIA SPORTS SEDAN HAVE EARNED ALMOST UNIVERSAL PLAUDITS
YET THEY ARE STILL ABOUT AS COMMON AS TIKI BARS IN MONTANA
THERE ARE GOOD REASONS FOR THAT
BUT NOT A MANY AS THERE ARE FOR OWNING ONE ANYWAY
“Where do you get that thing serviced?” Is the second most frequent opening salvo I hear from smiling strangers, as I extricate myself from, or prepare to slide into my Giulia. And there, in essence, is the primary “good reason” for their absence from our streets, even in Bozeman, let alone wider Montana.
There is no Alfa Romeo dealership in the State. Yet that is true for Porsche, far from unheard of, and Land Rover, often seen, here. Some may suggest a badge with a suspect record for reliability would cause greater concern, fair perhaps in the case of Porsche – but Land Rover? Additionally, consider the pressure on the manufacturer attempting to re-enter the most competitive car market in the world; a multibillion-dollar undertaking. You would want to ensure you were doing it with a good car, wouldn’t you? It has been 4 years, plenty of time to get those first-generation glitches of real-world usage addressed (and there were some). And the Giulia is a good car, there is little argument on that from reputable commentators.
Of course, An Alfa needs to be more than just a good car. There are not many “bad cars” out there these days. So simply meeting a standard of decency would not make an impact. What Alfa Romeo needed was a car, or cars that could attract those requiring at least a standard comparable with the more prestigious marques; without disappointing those who loved them despite their failings. In short, an Alfa can NOT be boring. It certainly must NOT be ugly.
Which circles us back to the obvious query of the most frequent comments I receive. And those tend to be some variant of appreciation for the looks of the car. Where the current Giulia sits in the scale of looks compared to older Alfas divides opinion. Modern realities dictate that it cannot compete with some of the earlier cars that make enthusiasts go weak at the knees. Fans of the early 70’s original Giulia will not find a great resemblance. But it rates significantly higher than some of the later day models the US market will have faded memories of. And as a modern-day sport sedan? Compared to the ubiquitous designs that could be confused as any one of a Toyota, Nissan, VW, or dare I say even BMW?
At this juncture I must confess the chosen header image for this article may be a tad misleading. The Giulia represented there is not the model I own. The above is the fire breathing Quadrifoglio, identified by the sport brands four leaf clover. This naughty little creature produces a class destroying 505BHP, as standard! It also only comes in rear wheel drive (and costs quite a lot, although not as much as some of its slower competition). Even if the budget were not restricting, anyone wishing a to drive a car in winter, in Montana, who has not completed at least a season of competitive rally driving, would be unwise to go that route.
The all-wheel drive Ti Sport is the model I bought. It is the white one in the other images. This, lesser powered but still very peppy and nimble version is substantially less expensive. It still has impressive 0-60, fuel economy and seats that give you a cuddle if you ask them to. The seats are of a higher standard in the Ti than the base model and I would highly advise the step up. There is much more I could add but space dictates I attempt brevity.
Thus, in summary: I believe life is too short for boring cars. If you are of the mind that you must take a car to the brand dealership for servicing, then if you live in south west Montana say, for an Alfa your closest option will be Coeur D’Alene, just across the Idaho border. In the same scenario with either Porsche or Range Rover you also need to cross into the potato State; but your destination will be Boise. You might consider which makes for a more appealing weekend.
Also, I kind of buried the lead. I payed $16,000 below retail for my new Giulia. Comparatively, this is less than you would expect to pay for a mid-spec Subaru Outback in Bozeman.
Admittedly, you would not have to drive 300 miles to get it serviced but if this is sufficient counterbalance, well, you probably own a Subaru already. ●
If you have interest in something more likely to set the pulse racing, not necessarily an Alfa, I can help. I have acquired other premium brands both personally and for clients at reduced prices, through perfectly legitimate methods. I invite you to contact me or look at the relevant section of my website. |
406 927 2473