Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Alfa Romeo Giulietta 1750tbi Cloverleaf

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Alfa Romeo Giulietta 1750tbi Cloverleaf

Article excerpt

Byline: PETER KEEMAN

THE Alfa Romeo Giulietta benefits from something called DNA which helps drivers adjust the car to their specific requirements.

The system acts on key components such as the engine, steering and brakes allowing the person behind the wheel to hone the Giulietta's responses to the prevalent conditions.

Normal mode - unsurprisingly the "N" part of the equation - is designed for relaxed driving so every component controlled is in its regular configuration.

Move the switch, positioned ahead of the gearlever, and "D" for Dynamic is engaged giving the engine increased enthusiasm while making the steering weightier for a sporty feel. A function called Pre-Fill is also activated designed to give the brake pedal the feel of a racing car.

It recognises that the driver is about to brake when the accelerator is released and increases the pressure inside the braking system reducing pedal travel so improving response times.

These settings are fine in theory but when it comes to the hot rod Cloverleaf they are rendered redundant.

That's because this Giulietta has only one way of travelling - quickly.

The 1750 TBi petrol engine is a beast that laughs in the face of electronic settings. Boasting a twin overhead camshaft, direct injection, variable valve timing and turbocharging it responds to the lightest touch on the accelerator with an eagerness of a cheetah spotting a wounded antelope.

To me it didn't seem to matter what setting I chose, the response was always nothing short of electric.

For once the official 0-62mph time of 6.8 seconds doesn't do the car justice as it feels a good deal quicker than that.

The ride is pretty smooth as well for a speedster although the occasional hump and hollow do make themselves felt in the cabin.

As with virtually every Alfa since the dawn of motoring time, the Giulietta has a classy exterior with the classic shield grille suspended between the air vents and the headlights. …

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