RAC Cars News

#WeLoveCars

Alfa Romeo Giulietta Refreshed for 2014

By raccars Published

Alfa Romeo's Giulietta hatchback is getting a mid-life facelift, although you'll need fairly sharp eyes to see the difference. Exterior changes are few – an updated front grille and fog light surrounds, plus new alloy wheel options.

On the other hand, the interior has been given more substantial attention. The cabin has been given a plusher feel with higher quality leather seats and trim and a new steering wheel. There are no major mechanical changes but the engine line up has been boosted by the addition of a punchy but economical diesel with 148bhp. This new 2.0 litre unit offers the same characteristics as the rest of the Giulietta range, meaning a decent balance between torque and straight line power and particularly smooth performance at speed. 62Mph can be reached within 8.8 seconds.

There have been some grumblings about refinement, so Alfa has added extra sound proofing to the new unit and refined the injection system. The Giulietta remains a smart ride even on twistier routes, but the picky could complain of some numbness to the steering, while the six speed annual transmission on offer could be smoother. Sportier models are notable for the bumpy ride.

In terms of convenience features, Alfa has come up with a new Uconnect infotainment system. It is armed with a colour 6.5 inch touchscreen, digital radio, Bluetooth connectivity and USB and auxiliary inputs. Satellite navigation is available as an option. The model in the Giulietta is larger than that used in the Mito and runs on a completely different software package – it's an improvement.

The Giulietta is one of the most stylish models in its class, but that sometimes comes at the expense of practicality. It's not the most spacious hatchback, with rear passengers in particular deprived of headroom and access. The boot is of a reasonable size but the high loading lip is old-fashioned now, with other manufacturers offering a more user friendly, flat loading bay. Similarly, the rear seats don't leave a flat surface when folded down.

Nonetheless, the new diesel version offers impressive efficiency figures – 60mpg is realistically achievable. Its good looks and punchy performance will still draw a number of buyers over more prosaic rivals.

The 2014 model will cost a little more than the car it replaces, with price rises of about 2-3%. The entry level model is available for £18,200, while diesels start at £21,700.

Looking to Buy?
Search for cars