2023 Alfa Giulia facelift REVIEW – can this 🇮🇹beauty beat Audi BMW Mercedes?

Look who’s behind me. Because we have just finished our premium sedan comparison test: Audi A4 vs. Mercedes C-Class vs. BMW 3-Series. And then I got a call from Italy. It was the Guilia calling me and say, like “Hey, I’ve just been facelifted”. Please review me and tell me can I compete with the Germans or am I even better? We’ll find out here with Thomas on Autogefuhl in 4K, full screen, full length with the Alfa Guilia facelift with a beautiful new paint here. It’s Moonlight Gray Matte, a matte color, some kind of a light silver bluish

tone. Really beautiful. And yeah, you can see the Italian beauty. That’s the theme of the Alfa Guilia, probably the most beautiful car in that segment. Is it? Tell me in the comments. You can see here this classic design. The so-called trilobo with the front grille and the two elements in the lower part with the air intakes, the whole thing then they call trilobo. New headlamps with daytime running light. You can see this three-element daytime running light like in the Alfa Tonale, new small, a compact SUV by Alfa. And this is also a citation of past

Alfa models. And the whole headlamp unit is now adaptive matrix LED. Finally, they go for that one. And it’s also standard equipment. But there’s more.

The length at 4 meters, 64 or 183 inches. That’s a little bit shorter than the competition models. And you can see here blackout window frames. This is special to the Competizione model-the high trim level, here in the facelift compared to Estrema in the US. You can see also the new Competizione badge then here. And the black mirror caps. They always come with every Guilia model. Here we also have 19-inch wheels

in a beautiful, very open design. We’ve seen it over the years. Also with Alfa Romeo, and here also with the contrasting brake calipers in red. Really beautiful. Yeah, beauty is not a from at all for this vehicle. Also here with a very strong hip area. Technology-wise, either rear-wheel drive or all-wheel drive then it standard in Germany. When you have all-wheel model, still a rear-wheel bias in the system. And the Q2 system means this is also a rear differential lock, starting from the Veloce model, so you can get out of the corners even better. A timeless

design for the rear. Very consistent design lines and new tail lamps here for the facelift. Updated design. And also transparent cover. So before, it had this red tinting. Now clear look through the new signature. Very cool. In the lower part, that is like a diffuser style. And… Is that a case for the Autogefuhl fake exhaust police? Well, the rear ones are visible on the inside. And this outer tip around, I would say this is not a case where, with the Autogefuhl fake exhaust police would send someone to jail, but maybe just a little fine. What

do you think? Under the hood, we have a 2-liter, 4-cylinder, 280 HP. That means just over 5 seconds in the acceleration figure, as all-wheel drive that is standard in Germany. In the US, you can also get the rear-wheel-drive version. And then there’s also 2.2-liter diesel, depending on the market. And the 2.9-liter Quadrifoglio version from that V6. There will also be specific updates for that coming on later. We’ll keep you updated. And in 2026, there will be the new Guilia generation all-electric then, both for the normal and the Quadrifoglio version. If you stay subscribed. Yes, of

course also until 2026 and forthcoming years. Then you also know the new updates right there. The key fob here. It’s a nice, beautiful detail, but overall a little too thick for an elegant, sporty brand, I would say. What do you think? Then the door closing sound. Not too bad, but also not superb. Something in between, I would actually say. And then here, inside of the doors, this seems quite good from the quality. Also here, some galvanized parts at the tip of the window leavers. And also a classic control for the side mirrors. That’s good and

easy to have. Then the interior. Look at here, with the facelift with the red contour stitches, the start-stop button at the steering wheel. Cruise control here, everything real buttons. The quality here is also something in between, I would say. But here the big shifting paddles. That’s a cool feature, definitely always. As for the seats, you have a base seat, but then also here, this sport seat in the higher trims, like Veloce or Competizione, and Estrema. And this sport seat has some more accentuation, like bigger shoulder bolstering and so on. So they keep you a little

bit tighter. Animal skin is a thing at Alfa Romeo. In some European markets, you can also get a basic with fabric and leatherette, but that’s about it. Anything else is basically animal skin. So they are a little bit behind the competition in this respect. Here, seating position itself so far so good. We’ll also check out how it is in driving soon. And headroom with 189, or six feet two. Still enough left. You feel a little bit caged in, but it’s also a theme because this is supposed to be a sporty vehicle. This vehicle here is

about the drive. We’re going to drive it very soon. Pro and con in this interior, what I love is the general styling… General styling… Here with a central line and everything clean. Screen integrated, and still manual climate control. Con is the infotainment unit, which is super slow, really old school. And look at that, the visualization also, when you take a look inside the map, for example, it looks like there’s like a filter on the screen, which makes it less brilliant. It’s really weird. And at least you can also have Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration.

That’s the only thing you will use with this infotainment system. But there also look how not clear the display is. But usually you will use this, and that’s about it. Let’s listen to the Harman Kardon sound system. Well, not too convinced by the sound, I have to say, honestly. And what I’ve just done I’ve reset all the equalizer features, because do you know these people that just do like this and then put all the bass all in the vehicle? That doesn’t really improve sound, I think. And you see here in the infotainment system, it’s really

a struggle to reset it again. See here? Yeah. So better leave it all zeroed out, and that’s it. Oh, and we have to talk about the rear-view camera. Seriously? Come on! Yeah, you can’t offer this in a car that is also at €70,000 as it stands here. Middle console, USB charger, here adaptive cup holders, enough space, it’s really good. And also a proper shifting lever. So I dislike the vehicles which make it all the way flat. Sporty vehicle needs a real shifting lever, even if it’s automatic, doesn’t it? What do you think? Then here, this

is the lever to activate the stiffer suspension. If you have the adaptive suspension, which is here in this top trim model. And here, dynamic mode, this would be the neutral mode or the advanced efficiency mode. What I do like is you can still use this control lever here to control the infotainment system while driving. And then we have here, this armrest could be a little bit better attached. When we open it, we have inductive charging pad underneath. And that you can also put your smartphone here. Then USB-A or USB-C connector. Digital instruments. Really beautiful. These

are all-new 12.3 inches. Look at that here how they are basically curved-in in this goggle design. Also classic Alfa Romeo element. Beautiful. And then here you can see also the facelifted daytime running light as this signature. Then we turn on the engine. Then we have this new visualization on the right side. Jonas can rev up the engine now. And we’ve switched positions here. There we go. Analog style, basically. Analog digital style. And then look on the left side and look where the 40 and the 20 and they are turned around. This is a heritage design

because it used to be that way in very old heritage Alfa models. So, yeah, very cool touch to it overall. And if you don’t like these retro gauges, you can also switch to the more modern ones like this or to a reduced view. Well, the focus of this vehicle is being agile and fun in driving. Well, you see it also in the rear seats because I’m not even sure if it can fit in there at all. Should I try? Yeah, you know, it’s a thing here on our channel like almost a meme to mark the

Thomas in the rear seat with the time-code and yeah, and you guys have a laugh. Yeah, that is definitely closer then with competition. All the competition models are close in the rear legroom yes, in this segment. But this is even closer. And also this is a hard pack material at the back. So I have to squeeze myself in here, literally. Headroom… Barely works, but I cannot lift my spine. It’s somewhat okay, but there’s hardly any space in the rear. You can see at least when also tall people are driving. You got a USB-C charger here

in the middle part, although but the middle tunnel is also really… Oh my God. So in the middle seat. Yeah, maybe like for hobbits or something. With 480 liters, the trunk doesn’t sound so small, but it’s a little bit less usable than with the competitors. For example, here in the width is less than a meter or 40 inches. And also the length is indeed also a little bit less than a meter or 40 inches. There the competitions is a little bit wider and longer. The height is comparable with also here a little bit less than

50 CM or 19 inches. And you can fold the seats from here, at least unlock them. And then you have to push luggage through. But yeah, it’s a little bit complicated, so it’s better actually to go then around. Welcome to Thomas’s Driving Lounge with the Alfa Guilia facelift. Two-liter, four-cylinder Competizione 280 HP. That turning indicator, though, really? Is that also heritage scheme? Yeah, it’s a weird sound. Just weird, right? But I can promise you. Everything we’ve criticized before can be evened out by the driving experience. Dynamic mode. And we also switch to the more modern

instruments here now. 60 km/h, first acceleration. Let’s go! 100. That’s all. That was 60 to 100. Went quite quick. And you can also use the shifting paddles, of course, to start, and even in the lower gear directly, it’s also possible. Or go here to the manual mode and then use the big shifting lever. That is also possible. So really nice emotional features. In the neutral mode, the N mode, the gears are not turned up that high. Here in the D mode, Dynamic mode also the suspension is set on a stiffer note. Everything is set on

the sportier tone overall, let’s see about the steering differences. Soon we can also accelerate out even further. We can do the left lane here now, I soon accelerate out. Neutral mode here. Yeah, steering is a little bit lighter. D mode have a little more resistance. I’m really looking forward how it is from the steering input also at higher speeds, because there is very, very direct input. But is it too direct at some point? Yeah, we’ll see. It’s very exciting. So are you guys ready to accelerate from 100 km/h? Let’s go! 130. 150.170, and now decelerating

again hard on brakes. What a good feeling for the brakes, they have worked on the brake feel. Indeed. And for the brake performance with this facelift also, they have shredded some weight off the engine in the front, so some weight-saving things for even better balance. And indeed, this car has some serious balance indeed. So also, lane change at 100 kilometers an hour, 60 miles an hour, super quick. The steering is… Very sensitive, but it’s also cool somehow. One more acceleration. Let’s go! 130.150. 180. Wind noise picking up. Now it’s feeling really loud in here. Whoa!

At 200 km an hour here, little wind noise, 124 miles an hour. So it here at 160 or so, the car feels good, but at really high speeds there are a lot of like wind noise, that you say like oh, is something broken? Yes, but the cool thing about this vehicle is you really feel this awesome balance indeed. So everything feels very well in the proportion and so on. And it feels so light. Also, if you compare it to the competitors, this one here indeed feels way lighter than the competitors. It feels shorter, it feels

more compact, it feels more agile—already feel it here right now. Of course, at higher speeds you have to see that you don’t oversteer, you know, reaction-wise, I have to keep that in check. But wow, I can already see this is so much fun to drive. Acceleration-wise, that was fine. Engine sound, nothing special. Also didn’t hear any special sound amplification or something. Turning indicator sound is questionable, definitely. And also the idle sound of the engine is… You start up this engine like… Am I driving diesel? So, sound wise, really not that convincing. But I can tell

you what is convincing, and that is driving agile corners. So very interesting indeed. Here, this performance gauge shows me when there’s rear-wheel drive and when there’s all-wheel drive. And even in the full acceleration on that autobahn part, no front-wheel drive. It’s like almost always rear-wheel drive. But what about when I start here in acceleration and, basically, in cornering, slightly left bend thus then the front wheels do get activated? Yeah, we’ll see about that. Let’s go! Well, that is already 70 km/h, and yes, I could see now there was some rear-wheel spin because also slightly wet.

And then there was also some front wheels getting activated. But it shows definitely this has a very, very strong rear-wheel bias, even if you have one of the all-wheel-drive versions right here. And now in these winding corners, I feel once again the balance of the vehicle 50/50 weight distribution, and it is so much fun to drive. I really have to say. Yeah, this feels like a smaller vehicle handling-wise, that’s very interesting. And the steering input also feels so natural. I don’t have to steer too much. It’s really progressive, feels really awesome. It doesn’t feel too

artificial indeed. So when the Guilia was originally launched, to me it felt too artificial, but then they fixed it with the model year before that even. So, since a couple of years, the steering feedback is now better. And also on the autobahn, it wasn’t too bad that it was too sensitive. A little bit more sensitive maybe than others, but actually fine. And here now, I can really feel that vehicle. It is so drivable, so much fun. Wow. And these are also great roads to do that. You’re also getting a little bit more altitude. Still a

little bit snow here. I can also expect some more slippery situations. Maybe a little bit more careful than here, but wow. Also being held well in the seats. I really have to say also, when you compare it to the Audi A4, BMW 3-Series, Mercedes C-Class, even the C-Class is now sportier in this new generation. Before that, the BMW was always the most aggressive one as for agile driving and so on, the Audi also with a great balance and really fun in the corners. But this one here, the Alfa Guilia in this segment, I have to

say it is the most fun vehicle indeed. Wow! That is something really astonishing to do. Definitely. I mean, we have some things here. Maybe the turning indicator sound or the quality of the rear view camera. Where I say, like, really? We don’t have too much legroom there. The trunk is also worse in the capacity or in the usability than with the others. So the Germans are ahead in some respects each, definitely. The engine sound here is also nothing special at all. But then again, when you think about driving this one here and putting it into

the corners, yeah, in that respect, the Alfa Guilia really leads the Germans. It is the ultimate fun machine in this segment. And the facelift. Well, I would say it underpins this result and adds even more beauty on the exterior. We’ve seen that. Really nice. Pretty impressed. So how good is it in comparison to the competition? The three Germans: Audi A4, BMW 3-Series, and Mercedes C-Class. Let’s start with the negative things. Fuel consumption is higher than with the competition. Rear view camera, for example this is like this, yeah, definitely worse. So some of the infotainment stuff,

definitely. And also less offering of space, both in the rear seats and in the trunk. So but then, to the positive aspects. First of all, the driving fun is phenomenal. It is, to me, the most fun vehicle in this segment here to drive. It’s just awesome. You feel connected to the vehicle you can attack the corners, has such a perfect balance. That’s really beautiful. Performance is also there. Engine wise, definitely is somewhat between the other normal and the performance models. Then they have this big step to the Quadrifoglio version, for example. But performance-wise, it’s fine.

Sound-wise from the engine, maybe not the best, but this is really all about the drive. Also, if you think about the steering input, really great, very precise. Could be comparable to the Audi, I would say. The Mercedes now in the new generation, also has a good driving feeling, especially in combination with the rear-axle steering. I really have to say the BMW falls off as for the steering feeling here in this segment comparison. The seating comfort here, I told you earlier. As for the sustainable materials they lack behind here, but the seating comfort is also decent.

It’s also better than with the BMW. I feel the Audi is best than here, but the comfort was also quite okay here. And the C-Class also, I would say comparable indeed. So overall, which one to pick in this segment here? It is really about the concise focus. Where the BMW has more the sporty approach, this one has too. For example, also the suspension is not uncomfortable, but rather set on a sporty note. Here, the adaptive suspension, you can also vary a little bit, make it stiffer, make it more comfortable again. So I think it’s good

compromise because they also go in the sporty direction. But the BMW felt to me a little bit more aggressive, whereas the Alfa felt more balanced. The Audi more goes into the hey, comfort and sportiness combination thing, and the Mercedes C-Class more into that comfort thing overall and tries to be more elegant and so on, more tech focus. So they all four have the individual focal point. Would I personally go for this one here? I would definitely consider it. And it’s really a thing of this is not the perfect vehicle, but it’s perfect for having fun.

That’s the thing. And you have to ask yourself what is more important to you? I have to think about it and would really think about if the shortcomings are totally evened out by the driving fun. Think I have to drive a little bit further to find out.

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