Alfa Romeo Giulietta hatchback
Price £18,450 - £28,480
- Great MultiAir petrol engines
- Stylish exterior
- Smart cabin
- Pricier than some rivals
- Limited rear passenger space
- Driving position is uncomfortable
At a glance
"The Alfa Romeo Giulietta is one of the most stylish cars in its class and it’s good to drive, but rival family hatchbacks are better all-rounders."
The Alfa Romeo Giulietta is a family hatchback that goes up against some stiff competition in its class, including the Ford Focus, Volkswagen Golf and Vauxhall Astra. Alfa Romeo as a brand is associated with style and driving pleasure, and those are the qualities the Italian manufacturer has tried to instill in the Giulietta. The Giulietta has also just been updated for 2016 with very subtle styling tweaks and some trim changes.
It's certainly sportier and more entertaining to drive than many family cars, and it looks more striking than most too. The drawbacks of ownership lie predominantly in a lack of practicality and an interior that feels a bit cheap and flimsy compared to the best in the class.
Alfa previously introduced some new engines and trim levels, plus a few tweaks to the styling and interior in 2014. This included extra soundproofing to improve the car's refinement.
The latest version of the Giulietta is available with a new version of Alfa's 2.0-litre diesel engine that's more powerful while producing less CO2. The fastest Giulietta model is the Veloce, which has a 238bhp 1.7-litre petrol engine that powers the car from 0-62mph in 6.6 seconds.
Other engines in the range include a 1.4-litre petrol engine with two different power outputs, each of which are punchy and deliver decent economy, while a 1.6-litre diesel comes with a claimed figure of 74mpg and CO2 emissions of 99g/km.
The Giulietta is available in five different trim levels. The most basic cars are simply Giulietta, moving up through Super, Tecnica, Speciale and Veloce. Standard equipment is good across the range, with even the entry-level model getting digital radio, air-conditioning, alloy wheels and Bluetooth connectivity.
Once you reach the Distinctive trim level, the car comes fitted with luxuries like cruise control, dual-zone climate control and rear parking sensors, which makes it the best specification in terms of equipment and price.
The Giulietta is a safe car, receiving the full five star Euro NCAP rating thanks to its construction and standard safety kit. It achieved a reasonable result in the 2015 Driver Power survey but the spectre of poor build quality still looms over the Alfa, with this cited as the car's weakest area by owners.
Prices for the Giulietta start at around £18,500, with diesel models in the same entry-level spec costing just over £19,000. When you look at the prices of cheaper rivals, the flair of the Giulietta starts to look rather expensive, particularly when you consider all models will depreciate heavily.
The Alfa Romeo Giulietta offers a good mix of performance and economy
The more powerful Alfa Romeo Giulietta petrol and diesel engines are the best
The Alfa Romeo Giulietta is quiet inside and has a lot of kit, but it can feel cheap in places
The Alfa Romeo Giulietta offers an average-sized boot and not much storage space
The Alfa Romeo Giulietta is very safe and becoming more reliable