Alfa Romeo Giulia GTA

A lightweight philosophy is ripe for todayís QV and one Alfa Romeo will have no trouble selling

illustration by BRENDON WISE words by LOUIS CORDONY

We make it up. They build it.

Sweet Dream

Historic racer inspires new breed of super sedan

ALFA Romeoís hoping the eight new models itíll reveal by 2020 will have shareholders sipping bubbly in Monaco by the time itís done.

While we understand a handful of SUVs will be key to this, so far the Giulia has been doing a lot of the heavy lifting in terms of getting Alfaís mojo back. And our fingers are crossed Alfa Romeo will build a special edition of the compact sedan to celebrate its hard work.

It wonít struggle for a business case. BMW has its M4 GTS, while Mercedes-AMG no doubt has a C63 Black in its wings. So thereís already a sandpit to play in.

Blowing the dust off the GTA badge is the next step. It lived on the Giulia Sprint, which terrorised racetracks across Europe and America from 1965 into the 1970s.

Our Giulia GTA will be a nod to its road-going versions. They homologated the Sprint GTAís uprated 1.6-litre engine for competition in Stradale (light) and Corsa (radically lightened) form.

Such a tuning philosophy is ripe for todayís Giulia QV and one the brand will have no trouble selling.

Remember the Abarth 695 Tributo Ferrari? Exactly.

DEAR DOLLAR .

Considering the extent of modification to the Giulia GTA it will command a hefty premium over the QVís $143,900. Only 500 will be built at around $250K. But considering BMW successfully sold its M4 GTS for more than that, we expect each GTA to find a home.

TOWER OF POWER .

Not being able to resist a go at the M4 GTSís 7min 28sec Nurburgring time, the Giulia GTA will be available in eightspeed auto guise only.

The upside to that is Alfa Romeo will fettle the 2.9-litre twin-turbo V6, feeding it more boost to lift outputs to 400kW/640Nm.

LIGHTEN UP .

That ĎAí in the originalís three-letter badge stood for Alleggerita, which means lightweight in Italian. So, like its forefather, the new Giulia GTA strips off.

Carbon-fibre doors and lexan windows feature from the B-pillar back, while ditching the rear seats balances out the new half rollcageís weight. All up, the GTA drops 100kg.

LOCKED ON .

Huge gains have also been made in the rolling stock department.

Centre-lock wheels are borrowed from the Ferrari 488 GT3 car, mainly for bling factor.

However, the 19-inch items are made from magnesium, like the original GTAís, to drive down weight and theyíre wrapped in Pirelliís flagship P Zero Trofeo R for barnacle-like grip.

WING COMMANDER .

Gone is the standard carís active-aero splitter as itís replaced by a larger fixed item.

Meanwhile, out back, a new, larger rear wing sits on the boot.

Both items hurt the carís 307km/h top speed, but add enough downforce to rival a GT4 racecar. The rear diffuser is untouched, but now shelters a raspier titanium exhaust system.