The nameplate “Giulietta” resonates with generations of car enthusiasts in Italy and elsewhere in the same way that “Corvette” and “Mustang” do here in the States. It was used, quite famously, on a sedan and coupe between 1954 and 1965 and then again on a sedan from 1977 to 1985. Just affixing it to a new product, as Alfa Romeo is doing to its all-new five-door hatchback set to debut at the 2010 Geneva Motor Show in March, is making a big statement about the company’s expectations for the car and for the expectations that potential customers should have for it. Alfa Romeo’s press release states: “In the Centenary year, the name is a tribute to an automobile myth and Alfa Romeo. The Giulietta is a car that, in the fifties, caught the imagination of generations of car enthusiasts, making the dream of owning an Alfa Romeo and enjoying the high level of comfort and technical excellence accessible for the first time. The Alfa Romeo Style Centre has produced a new Giulietta, a sports car capable of expressing both great agility on the most demanding routes and providing comfort on everyday roads.”
Automobile Magazine’s design editor, Robert Cumberford, had this to say after seeing photographs of the modern Giulietta: “To me it looks like an uber-MiTo, not bad, slightly related to the Ferrari-powered super coupe [the Alfa Romeo 8C Competizione], obviously derivative of the Walter de’Silva-designed 156 that got Alfa Romeo back into safe waters.”
Built on an all-new front-wheel-drive architecture, the Giulietta goes on sale in Italy in spring 2010, replacing the aging 147, with five engines: three gasoline and two diesel. The Giulietta’s platform is called C-Evo, and although there are no plans for the Giulietta to be offered in the United States, C-Evo will underpin new Chrysler, Jeep, and Dodge models that are scheduled to arrive here in 2012 and 2013.