Hard-core GTA badge reborn for Alfa
Struggling Alfa Romeo brings back its lightweight sports sedan badge
Cancelled Geneva motor show: Sales-starved Italian premium brand Alfa Romeo has gone back to basics to turn its very fast Giulia Quadrifoglio Verde into an ultra fast GTA.
It has also made a road-legal, track-spec Giulia GTAm by ripping 100kg from the flagship Giulia QV and gutting its interior, including its rear seats, before replacing it with a FIA-spec half roll cage, a fire extinguisher, race seats and six-point Sabelt harnesses.
The street-legal version, complete with the outrageous, roof-height rear wing attached to the boot lid of the Giulia, will also use a pair of carbon-framed sports seats.
The bewinged body kit of the GTA hides an uprated version of the Ferrari-built, 2.9l, twin-turbo V6, now offering up to 402kW of power instead of the stock QV’s 375kW.
The most powerful Giulia ever built, the GTA and the GTAm will hammer to 100km/h in a claimed 3.6 seconds.
The road-going Giulia GTA found its weight savings via switching in carbon-fibre for the driveshaft, bonnet, sports seats, the roof and the front wheel arches, while the polycarbonate Lexan replaces the glass in the front and rear side window frames.
The GTAm took it even further, throwing away the inner door skins and replacing the interior door handles with a simple belt to pull on.
The look-at-me aerodynamics, dominated by the deep front splitter and the sky-high rear spoiler, are active, with Alfa claiming lessons learned from its Kimi Raikkonen-powered Formula 1 team.
Other hard-core ideas include centre-lock 20-inch wheels and tyres, and an Akrapovič central exhaust.
Alfa claims its high-seed handling will be improved after the front and rear tracks were pushed out 50mm, giving it an excuse to contrive riveted pieces on the wings to hark back to the 1960s. There are also custom-developed springs and new bushes at all four corners.
The new car will be named “Giulia GTA”, which is Italian shorthand for “Gran Turismo Alleggerita (Gran Turismo Lightened)”, which throws it back to Alfa’s 1965 Giulia Sprint GTA.
While that original car weighed just 745kg, the modern Giulia GTA clocks in at 1,520kg, though it has a lot more power to move it around than the original car’s 85kW.
Alfa will only build 500 of the cars, with each one certified and numbered, split between road and track versions, with every buyer being treated to personalised customer experiences with helmet maker Bell and race-gear supplier Alpinestars.
Besides Alfa Romeo Driving Academy courses, GTA buyers will also receive fitted Alpinestars race suits, gloves and shoes to help them get the best out of the machinery.
The Giulia GTA’s specification list is every bit as outrageous as the car looks and it promises raw speed and raw performance, and even the press images from Alfa Romeo looked like raw efforts at Photoshop.
The interiors have run a mile from their more luxurious setup and are left with Alcan Tara on the dash, the door panels, the glove box and the interior A-pillars to reduce reflections, while the same material covers the rear of the GTAm.