Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio (2024) review
This is so much more than some new headlights. The best just got, incredibly, even better.
Matt Robinson
Matt Robinson

Published on March 12, 2024

Alfa Romeo has another go at improving its magnificent Giulia Quadrifoglio supersaloon, but while it might just look like a new set of lights at the front and some exposed carbon fibre in the cabin, there are changes under the skin that have turned what was always a phenomenal car into something truly extraordinary.

In the metal

The most obvious alteration to the updated Giulia Quadrifoglio is its '3+3' headlights. Designed to tie it in with the rest of the Giulia range, it gives the front of the Alfa Romeo a sleeker, more modern look, and as they're also Matrix LED affairs then the illumination of the road ahead at night has stepped up a notch in the process.

Otherwise, though, precisely nothing else has changed, although this is completely fine with us because the Giulia seems to get better looking by the day. Its lovely Quadrifoglio touches such as four exhaust pipes, 19-inch dark-finished 'Teledial' alloys, the fabled triangular cloverleaf logo on the front wings, carbon-fibre spoilers and splitters at each end of the car and a choice of some sumptuous colours, including Misano Blue, tri-coat Etna Red and the majestic Montreal Green, make for what is simply the best-looking four-door car on the planet right now.

Inside, over the years Alfa has been enacting a programme of incremental improvements on what was, at launch, a substandard passenger compartment, to the point that the interior of the Giulia Quadrifoglio these days is almost as good as the outside. For 2024, the specific alterations are that there is now real, exposed carbon-fibre trim in the centre of the dashboard, on the door cards and running down the transmission tunnel, while a refreshed 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster presented in a twin-telescopic-tube housing joins the fray as well.

Generally, this is now a beautiful cabin in the Quadrifoglio, the somewhat average 8.8-inch central infotainment touchscreen aside, and not only does material quality feel great (those exquisite, gigantic, metal paddle shifts remain, for example; they're the best in the entire industry, bar none) but there's enough room in the back of the Alfa for taller adults to sit comfortably. And at the back of the car is a useful 480-litre boot, so on kerbside and showroom appeal, there's much to like with the Giulia and precious little to fault.

Driving it

The biggest single mechanical change Alfa has wrought on the Quadrifoglio is hidden in the rear axle. Where the car previously had an electronic, torque-vectoring differential operating the driven wheels, now it has a proper mechanical limited-slip unit that is adapted from the one seen in the limited-edition, 540hp GTA and GTAm variants. To complement this, the suspension has all had a retuning to better fit the car's new capabilities, while - just for good measure - the Italian outfit has dumped another 10 horsepower into the mix for an outright peak of 520hp. The torque's the same at a 600Nm maximum.

What you end up with is a car that is nothing short of sensational. We don't know how anyone could want a car to have more operating bandwidth than this thing possesses. We tried it on track, we tried it on some twisty roads and we tried it on regular urban and extra-urban routes, and it excelled. Everywhere.

The ride quality on its two-stage variable dampers, for instance. This is a 300km/h-plus car with an output beyond 500hp, so you're simply not expecting it to be able to ride like an Audi A8 on air springs. OK, it doesn't quite match those silken levels of mechanical isolation, but rarely is the occasion you can ever discern the unsprung mass of the gorgeous 19-inch wheels at any corner of the car. You don't hear the suspension working either, as it smothers up lumps and bumps in the road, and while both tyre roar and wind blustering about the passenger compartment are both audible at times, they're never at any level you'd deem 'unacceptable'.

As it quietly and comfortably slushes its way around towns, where you can both appreciate the sumptuous and figure-hugging front seats, as well as the imperceptible way its eight-speed gearbox flits between ratios and takes up the drivetrain slack with no thumping interruptions, you soon forget this Alfa is designed to be a driver's car. Aside from fuel consumption that's going to hover in the zone of about 11.3 litres/100km in mixed usage, the idea of running a Giulia Quadrifoglio as a daily driver is not bonkers in the slightest. In fact, we'd voluntarily choose it over a considerable number of supposedly far less focused cars, which don't seem to do ride and rolling refinement even half as well as this.

The judgment of its major controls is spot-on, too, with a lovely, crisp throttle that carefully metes out the V6's immense power to only millimetric flexes of your ankle. True, in Advanced Efficiency mode - the least aggressive of the Alfa's four DNA settings, which include Dynamic and Normal like any other Giulia, and then an extra 'Race' option for the Quadrifoglio alone - the right-hand pedal does get a bit lazier and longer in travel if you wish to wake the V6 up front, but even then it's not horrendous to use. The brakes, meanwhile, have masses of bite and oodles of pedal feel, and then there's the steering. Light of touch but beautifully faithful in its responses, with genuine light-and-shade changes to its behaviour as you click through A, N, D and then Race driving settings, it's never anything less than perfect.

With all this as your backdrop, you soon realise that when you start to extend the Alfa Romeo and push at the envelope of its abilities, then you're going to have a good time. And you do. A great big grin-inducing, heart-rate-pumping thrill ride.

The new differential really makes itself felt if you get on the power early out of tight corners. There's no spikiness or inauthenticity about the Giulia's body control now, as an electronic diff's brain attempts to work out a series of complex computations in mere milliseconds; instead, you feel the car squirrel down onto its outside rear, allowing some torque to thud into the rubber there and fire the Quadrifoglio onto the next straight in a balletic, graceful neutral-to-oversteer stance. If you want it to transform its rear tyres into enormous clouds of white smoke on track while you hold massive degrees of opposite lock and the throttle open, it will drift for you all day long - and that's immense fun, but the real reward is how you can hook it up and feel its deft balance, its impeccable poise, as it hunkers through the corners in a breathtaking display of dynamic talent.

The V6 engine, boosted by a mere two per cent in its overall power output this time around, doesn't feel any different in the 2024MY car, but as this unit has always been an unmitigated delight in the automotive world, this is no bad thing. It sounds tremendous as it howls out to 6,500rpm and beyond, taking on an extra edge and snarl if you step the Alfa up into Dynamic or Race modes. The speed the 2.9-litre engine offers up is plentiful, to say the least. And the exhaust overlays the entire experience with some enjoyable parps and rumbles from time to time, yet the true acoustic rewards here are induction first, tailpipes second - as it should be. If you do want some louder tunes from the exhaust, Alfa will upgrade the system to an Akrapovič item for a fee, but we'd suggest you don't really need that.

Yes, if you use Dynamic or Race on the road, the damping can become a bit hyperactive and have the Giulia Quadrifoglio bobbling up and down frenetically, which isn't the most cosseting way of covering ground. Yet, even then, you can press and hold down the little damper-icon switch in the middle of the DNA mode dial to change the shock absorbers into their softer setting, so you have the car dialled up for maximum attack, but the suspension can breathe with even the worst of lumpen tarmac you encounter. Be warned, though: Race mode allows all 520hp and 600Nm to flow to the back wheels unfettered, as it switches off traction control entirely. Use this setting wisely.

What you get for your money

At this stage, we don't know how much the revised Giulia Quadrifoglio will cost as it is not confirmed in Alfa Romeo Ireland's pricelists yet. Obviously, its CO2 output that's beyond the dreaded 225g/km marker means it will be hammered for VRT and annual motor tax (€2,400 a year, folks), so the fact it is almost certainly going to be deep into six-figure territory should come as no surprise to anyone.

You get plenty in the way of standard equipment for your money, though. Alfa doesn't offer much in the way of options for the car, save for different paint colours, a 20-inch wheel upgrade (don't bother, the 19s look splendid and the 20s might ruin the Giulia's forgiving ride), some advanced driver assist gewgaws and that aforementioned Akrapovič exhaust. So that means desirable toys such as adaptive cruise control, an uprated Harman Kardon sound system, electrically operated and heated front seats, a heated steering wheel, Matrix LED headlights, dual-zone climate control, a reversing camera with parking sensors all round, adaptive dampers, 3D connected navigation, wireless smartphone charging and the 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster - among much, much more - are all included in the Alfa's list price.


We know this car is not going to be cheap to buy when prices are confirmed here. We also know it is not going to be cheap to run. Nor is it the most practical machine in the world, given it's only sold as a four-door saloon. But please, we're begging you: if you do have the sort of money that means you could afford to own something operating in the same exalted sphere as the updated Giulia Quadrifoglio, then pick the Alfa. Cars as sublime, as near-perfect and as intoxicating as this will not be around forever, and what the Italian company has dished up here is what we'd argue is the greatest example of its stellar breed that we've ever seen.


Tech Specs

Model testedAlfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio (2024MY)
Irish pricingGiulia range from €62,495
Powertrainpetrol engine - 2.9-litre twin-turbocharged V6
Transmissionautomatic - eight-speed gearbox, rear-wheel drive with mechanical limited-slip differential
Body stylefour-door, five-seat saloon
CO2 emissions229g/km
Irish motor tax€2,400 per annum
Fuel consumption10.1 litres/100km (28mpg)
Top speed307km/h
0-100km/h3.9 seconds
Max power520hp at 6,500rpm
Max torque600Nm at 2,500-5,000rpm
Boot space480 litres
Rivals to the Giulia Quadrifoglio (2024)