- Sensuous curves
- Agile and engaging
- Willing turbocharged power
- Thrilling Quadrifoglio
- A model option for every taste
- Quick steering not great on highway
- Back seat could be bigger
- Suspect reliability
- Most active safety tech optional
- Where’s the manual?
features & specs
The 2020 Alfa Romeo Giulia combines agility and power in a sensuous Italian package.
It’s important for sport sedans to stand out; German rivals have dominated the category since they invented it. The 2020 Alfa Romeo Giulia answers with uniquely Italian styling that is both sporty and sensuous. It also delivers the goods: agile handling, strong engines, and a thrilling performance model. It gets a 6.8 TCC Rating based on those strengths. (Read more about how we rate cars.)
The 2020 Giulia is updated with an infotainment system that’s now a strength instead of a weakness. It’s larger and is a touchscreen. The Giulia’s interior materials are improved and it has and more safety equipment, both standard and optional.
The 2020 Alfa Romeo Giulia lineup includes base, Sport, Ti, Ti Lusso, Ti Sport, Ti Sport Carbon, and Quadrifoglio models. The base model is well-equipped and sporty for about $40,000, and buyers can add more sport- or luxury-oriented equipment based on the model and options chosen. The Giulia Quadrifoglio is a full-on performance car with a Ferrari-derived, twin-turbo 2.9-liter V-6 that kicks out 505 horsepower, big Brembo brakes, a torque-vectoring rear differential, performance-tuned active dampers, and 19-inch summer performance tires.
The other models use a 2.0-liter turbo-4 that makes 280 hp and sends it to the rear or all four wheels via an 8-speed automatic transmission. The base engine has plenty of power that is delivered promptly and smoothly. It’s not as smooth as BMW’s 2.0-liter turbo-4, which is among the best in its class.
Every Giulia is agile and base models have a surprisingly comfortable ride. The harshness of larger wheel sizes can be somewhat offset by the available active dampers, but no Giulia rides poorly. All Giulias have itchy trigger-finger steering that is great in turns but requires lots of small corrections on the highway.
The Giulia Quadrifoglio is a thundering beast with real track capability. Its V-6 revs willingly and screams is way up to the 6,500-rpm redline as it hurtles the car forward.
No matter the choice, the Giulia is a spicy Italian counterpoint to the more conservative German models. It’s a pleasure to look at and to drive.
The interior has sport seats up front that hug occupants and a rear seat on the smaller size for the car’s footprint. The Giulia Quadrifoglio gets tighter and more heavily bolstered buckets and large steering wheel-mounted shift paddles.
Automatic emergency braking is standard this year, a move we applaud. Additional active safety features are optional, but Alfa Romeo doesn’t charge too much for them. The new safety items for 2020 consist of active blind-spot monitors, adaptive cruise control with stop-and-go capability, intelligent speed control that adjusts the speed when the speed limit changes, active lane control, a driver-attention monitor, and traffic sign recognition. The Giulia has performed decently in the crash tests it has undergone, but it doesn’t have a complete crash-test record.
2020 Alfa Romeo Giulia
Sport sedan proportions and classic brand styling cues make the 2020 Alfa Romeo Giulia a visual stunner.
The 2020 Alfa Romeo Giulia exudes Italian style inside and out. We rate it an 8 for styling based on its exceptional body and generally attractive interior.
The Giulia’s exterior is highlighted by Alfa Romeo’s triangular “Scudetto” (little shield) grille that recalls great Alfas of the past. A pair of large air intakes extend outward from the bottom of the triangle. Eye-slit headlights flank the grille and extend into the fenders. Along the sides, a character line runs along the top of the wheel cutouts and another gives depth and shape to the rocker panels. Available clover-leaf wheels are a uniquely Alfa choice. The rear end is characterized by a fast rear roofline, a pert decklid, and taillights that play off the look of the headlights. In total, the Giulia has a sport sedan shape, with the right cues from the past.
The Quadrifoglio features a more sculpted body kit, larger wheels, and clover leaf fender badges, and optional Sport trim packages for other models incorporate elements of that look.
The Giulia’s interior is marked by a dashboard shape that rises from right to left to cant the dash and controls toward the driver. A newly standard 8.8-inch center touchscreen fills that space better than the old, base 6.5-inch screen, and the control layout is simple and easy to use. A variety of interior colors and materials that range from wood to aluminum to carbon fiber all add visual interest to its appealing cabin.
2020 Alfa Romeo Giulia
Every 2020 Alfa Romeo Giulia is agile and powerful, and the Quadrifoglio is nothing less than thrilling.
In its base form or its high-performance guise, the 2020 Alfa Romeo Giulia is a quick and agile sport sedan that is always fun to drive. We rate it an 8 out of 10 for its especially quick steering, ready power, and agile moves. The Guilia Quadrifoglio would rate even higher if we rated it separately.
Alfa Romeo offers the Giulia in two basic flavors, spicy and hot as hell, with variants on the spicy version.
The base engine is a 280-hp turbo-4 that teams with an 8-speed automatic transmission to send plentiful, quiet power to the rear or all four wheels. It’s smooth, too, but not as buttery as BMW’s outstanding turbo-4 of the same size. The transmission delivers quick, stable shifts and drivers can shift on their own via available steering wheel-mounted shift paddles.
The Giulia’s standard suspension is firm but not punishing, and the relatively tall sidewalls on its standard 17-inch alloy wheels are a good match for pockmarked roads. Live where the pavement is glassy smooth and we’d recommend opting for the available 18- or 19-inch wheels.
Steering is the Giulia’s best trait. It has a thick-rimmed steering wheel that feels good in your hands, the 11.8:1 steering is exceptionally quick, and it provides lots of feel.
Alfa Romeo’s DNA selector has Dynamic, Natural, and Advanced Efficiency modes to dial performance up or down. Get the optional adaptive dampers that come with a limited-slip rear differential, and Dynamic mode is a blast with its sharper moves, quicker throttle, heavier steering, and enhanced ability to put the power to the pavement.
That’s the appetizer. The main course is the Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio that increases performance in every metric.
The Quad is powered by a Ferrari-derived, 2.9-liter twin-turbo V-6 that shoves its 505 hp exclusively to the rear wheels.
The twin-turbo V-6 screams as it revs toward its 6,500-rpm redline. Its max torque arrives at 2,500 rpm, which is higher than most turbocharged engines. The effect is an engine that asks the driver to push it to tap into the most-willing power. Its beefed up version of the 8-speed automatic plays well with the extra power and pops off firm, fast shifts in Dynamic mode or in the Race mode that is added for the Quadrifoglio. Those modes also firm up the suspension’s adjustable dampers, but even the Quadrifoglio’s ride is never too harsh on the street.
The Giulia Quadrifgolio’s steering manages to act quicker than the standard model’s because the suspension is more responsive to steering inputs. That just translates to more fun, though the brake-by-wire Brembos feel wooden during everyday driving. Push the Quad, though, and the brakes have strong stopping power and feel more natural.
On a track, the Giulia Quadrifoglio’s handling is neutral and balanced, and it carves precise lines through turns. Its 19-inch performance tires provide tremendous traction, though the tail can step out if pushed, but that’s attributable to the amazing power and rear-wheel drive rather than chassis balance.
2020 Alfa Romeo Giulia
Comfort & Quality
The 2020 Alfa Romeo Giulia puts the focus on the driver, but adults will fit in the back seat.
The 2020 Alfa Romeo Giulia’s mission becomes apparent as soon as you get in. The generously bolstered driver’s seat gives you a hug, the three-spoke steering wheel is thick but has a small diameter, and the forward vision is excellent. It’s a driver’s car that we rate a 6 for comfort based on its driver-focused front row.
Even the base front bucket seats are well-bolstered and have 10-way power adjustments, but the Giulia Quadrifoglio’s optional Sparco leather and carbon-fiber seats make performance the priority. They’re too thin for wider drivers, but just the right kind of form-fitting for track duty.
The rear is a decent place to be. It’s certainly not as fun as the driver’s seat and the door openings are rather small, but leg room and head room are decent for average-sized adults.
The trunk is small at 13 cubic feet, but loading items will be easy thanks to its wide opening and low liftover.
Alfa upgraded the Giulia’s interior materials for 2020. Many of the cheaper-feeling controls now feel more solid. Standard leather upholstery is welcome in a class where some cars go with synthetic leather on base models. Available nappa leather teams with open-pore wood to create an even richer environment in the Giulia.
2020 Alfa Romeo Giulia
The 2020 Alfa Romeo Giulia has incomplete crash-test results, but it gets more active-safety features this year.
The 2020 Alfa Romeo Giulia has good but incomplete crash-test ratings, and it offers more safety equipment for 2020, including standard automatic emergency braking. Without complete safety scores, we can’t give the 2020 Giulia a safety rating.
The 2020 Alfa Giulia Giulia earns top scores of “Good” in all tests from the IIHS except the headlight test. Its standard headlights get a “Poor” rating, though its optional LED headlights earn a “Good” rating. The Giulia also lacks pedestrian detection for its automatic emergency braking system.
The NHTSA has not tested the 2020 Alfa Romeo Giulia.
The good news is Alfa Romeo makes more safety equipment standard for 2020. Forward-collision warnings with automatic emergency braking are now standard. Also new, though optional, are active lane control, adaptive cruise control with stop-and-go capability, intelligent speed control that adjusts the speed when the speed limit changes, a driver-attention monitor, and traffic sign recognition, which are all available in packages. Rear park assist is standard, and front park assist is optional. Blind-spot monitors and lane departure warnings are also optional.
2020 Alfa Romeo Giulia
The 2020 Alfa Romeo Giulia comes well-equipped and a new infotainment system solves its biggest bugaboo.
The 2020 Alfa Romeo Giulia costs roughly $40,000 base price and includes plenty of features, which is appropriate for its class. A new infotainment system solves one of the car’s biggest issues, and the important active safety features are now standard. We like its array of options and its upsized touchscreen, and give it a rating of 7 out of 10.
Buyers can outfit the Giulia as everything from comfortable yet sporty cruiser to all-out performance sedan. The model lineup consists of base, Sport, Ti, Ti Lusso, Ti Sport, Ti Sport Carbon, and Quadrifoglio models.
In its base flavor, the Giulia comes with leather upholstery, 10-way power-adjustable front seats with four-way lumbar support, dual-zone automatic climate control, a 7.0-inch configurable instrument cluster, a 40/20/40-split folding rear seat, Brembo brakes, and 17-inch alloy wheels on run-flat tires. The new infotainment system comes with an 8.8-inch touchscreen that replaces a 6.5-inch static screen, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, satellite radio, three front USB outlets and one rear, and an eight-speaker audio system.
We recommend the Ti model. It adds wood trim, heated front seats, a heated steering wheel, and 18-inch wheels for $1,400 more. It is also the key to getting the optional driver-assistance systems. A Sport Performance package for the Ti adds active dampers, paddle shifters, and a limited-slip rear differential.
The most-engaging model is the Quadrifoglio, which starts at about $75,000. It adds a front chin spoiler and an active front splitter, a rear diffuser, quad exhaust tips, a carbon-fiber roof, adaptive headlights, a rear spoiler, carbon-fiber interior trim, extended leather upholstery, 14-way power-adjustable Sparco leather and carbon-fiber performance seats with Alcantara inserts, navigation, a 14-speaker Harman Kardon audio system, bigger Brembo brakes, a torque-vectoring rear differential, performance-tuned active suspension, a two-mode exhaust system, and 19-inch summer performance tires.
A new infotainment system gives the Giulia a more livable control experience. The center screen is now a touchscreen, the interface is easier to understand, and it all reacts quicker. It fixes one of the Giulia’s major flaws.
2020 Alfa Romeo Giulia
The 2020 Alfa Romeo Giulia is fairly efficient for its power ratings.
With its 2.0-liter turbo-4 and 8-speed automatic transmission, the 2020 Alfa Romeo Giulia is fairly efficient. It is EPA rated at 24 mpg city, 33 highway, 27 combined and that earns it a score of 5 out of 10 on our scale.
Opt for all-wheel-drive with the 2.0 and the rating falls slightly to 23/31/26 mpg. These base Giulias have good power, but the 8-speed automatic aids the highway figure by keeping the rpms low.
Opt for the twin-turbo 2.9-liter V-6 in the Giulia Quadrifoglio and the ratings drop to 17/25/20 mpg. That’s not efficient but it isn’t bad for 505 hp.
The ratings are somewhat tempered by the fact that all models require premium fuel.