Can the Giulia spearhead Alfa Romeo’s return to relevance in the United States?

Alfa Romeo’s return to relevance in the United States is beginning to take shape. The Fiat-owned car maker will travel to next week’s New York Auto Show to unveil a tamer version of the hardcore, 505-horsepower Giulia Quadrifoglio Verde that bowed last year.

Called Giulia and Giulia Ti, respectively, the base and mid-range variants of the 3 Series-baiting sedan are expected to become Alfa’s best sellers on our side of the pond. As expected, they do without the Verde model’s muscular-looking body kit, and they ride on smaller wheels wrapped by meatier tires. Available chrome trim around the windows adds an elegant touch to the overall look.

Alfa knows it needs to up its tech game to take on German rivals like Mercedes-Benz and BMW. The Giulia consequently comes standard with a brand new infotainment system called Alfa-tainment (seriously) that’s displayed on a 6.5-inch screen built into the center console, though a bigger 8.8-inch screen is offered at an extra cost. The list of available driving aids includes adaptive cruise control, a forward collision warning system, and lane-keeping assist. Finally, audiophiles can pay extra to get a 900-watt Harman Kardon sound system that plays through 14 speakers.

The Giulia’s volume engine is a 2.0-liter four-cylinder unit made entirely out of aluminum. Turbocharged and direct-injected, it sends 276 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque to the rear wheels via an eight-speed automatic transmission developed with input from ZF, and a class-exclusive carbon fiber driveshaft. The Giulia hits 60 mph from a dead stop in 5.5 seconds, and it goes on to a top speed of 149 mph.

Buyers can order steering wheel-mounted shift paddles and Alfa Romeo’s Q4 all-wheel drive system at an extra cost, but an enthusiast-friendly manual transmission isn’t offered with the four-cylinder engine.

Pricing information will be published in the weeks leading up to the sedan’s on-sale date. An Alfa Romeo spokesperson told Digital Trends that the company isn’t ready to reveal when the Giulia will arrive in showrooms.

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