Despite car sales dipping by 3.5 per cent in July, the 13th consecutive month of decline, Alfa Romeo continues to thrive due to two new models.
The Alfa Romeo MiTo supermini was launched towards the end of 2009, but the real success story has been the Alfa Romeo Giulietta.
Designed as a sporty but practical alternative to the Ford Focus in the family hatchback segment, the Giulietta has been credited with boosting sales for the Italian brand.
Launched last year, the Giulietta has been the subject of a television advertising campaign starring Uma Thurman.
However, Alfa has pointed to the car’s five-star EuroNCAP safety rating and Top Ten position in the JD Power Vehicle Ownership Satisfaction Survey for 2011 as the reasons behind its success.
The Alfa Romeo Giulietta is available in the UK now with a choice of petrol or diesel engines. The petrol, a 1.4-litre MultiAir unit in 120 and 170bhp variations, is a former International Engine of the Year winner, while the 1750 TBi 235bhp engine is the most powerful in the range.
Diesel options include a 105bhp 1.6-litre Multijet and a 2.0-litre Multijet engine in 140 and 170bhp configurations.
The most frugal of the diesels, the 1.6-litre unit, delivers CO2 emissions of just 114g/km while petrol emissions are as low as 134g/km in the most efficient petrol.
The five-seat hatchback comes in three specification levels ranging from entry-level Turismo to the range-topping Alfa Romeo Giulietta Quadrifoglio Verde – a replacement for the iconic Cloverleaf trim.
Prices for the Alfa Romeo Giulietta start from £17,000 in the UK, with range-topping models priced closer to £25,000.