The Alfa Romeo Giulietta competes in the hard-fought hatchback sector dominated by the Focus, Astra and Golf, but the pretty and charismatic Alfa has plenty of aces to play when it comes to winning new buyers. This is especially so with this model, the Alfa Romeo Giulietta Business Edition.
This visually-arresting model has strong appeal to those in the sector who value the image statement of eye-catching styling. Plus, the stand-out driving dynamics put more fun into hatchback motoring.
After Rolls Royce, Alfa has arguably the most recognisable front grille, a shield-shaped icon which dominates the car and gives it immediate presence and a distinctive persona.
Add crouched, ready-for-action body styling and the appeal of the Giulietta becomes quite compelling.
There are petrol and diesel engines with outputs spanning 120hp to 240 hp and one of the most popular is the 1.6 litre diesel fitted to my recent test model, the Giulietta Business Edition. The car is priced at £19,080.
Offering 120 hp, a 0-60 mph time of 10 seconds and a top speed of 121 mph, this model delivers decent performance with low running costs.
The fuel figure is 74.3 mpg combined and emissions are a tax-free 99g/km, making it attractive to business users. Standard kit also includes Bluetooth with voice recognition, Uconnect touchscreen infortainmemt centre with sat-nav, audio streaming, USB and SD reader.
You also get cruise control, dual-zone climate control, front and rear parking sensors, 16-inch alloys and electric lumbar support on the driver’s seat.
Another feature is the Alfa DNA switch. You can alter driving modes to Dynamic ( more sporty), Natural ( economy) and All-weather (more grippy).
Even in Natural, the Alfa Romeo Giulietta Business Edition feels quick and responsive and you immediately notice it has better composure on the corners than its rivals. And while the suspension setting is firmer it still delivers acceptable ride comfort.
The interior styling is smart, the dashboard dominated by big twin dials. Oddment stowage around the cabin is sparse and the door bins are ultra slim, but the glove box is much larger than most.
Seating is more supportive in this latest model and while the swooping roofline slightly reduces rear headroom, it is still adequate.
The 350 litre boot is a tad larger than that of a Focus, and the split-fold rear seats boost the space though the seats don’t drop fully flat.
Though it has a few cabin shortfalls, the Giulietta wins you over with its sheer visual kudos and its impressive credentials as a sporty driver’s car.
FOR: Charismatic looks, sporty driving feel.
AGAINST: Cabin plastics could be better.