Balocco was the setting for the unveiling and testing of the Alfa Romeo Giulia GTA as well as its “extreme” GTAm configuration. The GTA brings back one of the legends of motoring and a milestone of the brand’s history: the 1965 Giulia GTA. It is an authentic return to the roots of the brand established 111 years ago, those of the worlds of performance and touring.
It was only fitting that the official debut would happen at the former Autodelta workshops at the Balocco Proving Ground (Vercelli province), the site of the 1960s creation of the Giulia Sprint GTA. This 60-year-old venue is the home of the development and testing of all Alfa Romeo cars. It was right here that journalists tested out the new Alfa Romeo supercar, and later enjoyed its road-going qualities on a panoramic off-track route from the countryside of Vercelli province to the Ivrea moraine and the Lago di Viverone in the foothills of the Alps.
The model in brief
The Giulia GTA is characterized as both aesthetic and functional, confirming it is not an exercise in style but instead a high-performance vehicle derived from the exceptional Giulia Quadrifoglio. Its weight is reduced by up to 100 kg compared to the Giulia Quadrifoglio, and it is powered by an upgraded version of the 540-hp Alfa Romeo 2.9 V6 Bi-Turbo engine with a best-in-class weight-to-power ratio of 187 hp/L. It also delivers extraordinary performance with the Launch Mode system where it goes from 0 to 100 km/h in just 3.6 seconds.
Alfa Romeo engineers have worked to improve its aerodynamics, handling, and weight through the widespread use of carbon fiber and composite material. The technical expertise comes straight from Formula 1, courtesy of the synergy with Sauber Engineering. The GTA was entrusted with a new rear spoiler – adjustable to 4 positions in the GTAm, and the active front splitter, which can be extended for use on the track by up to 40 mm on the GTAm. The latter is able to develop double the pressure compared to the Giulia GTA, and a triple increase compared to the Giulia Quadrifoglio thanks to a special new air extractor capable of increasing the car’s ground effect. Taking part in this work were two drivers from the F1 team, Antonio Giovinazzi and Kimi Räikkönen, who played an active role in some track testing sessions.
Other features developed include the Akrapovič central exhaust system in titanium, built into the rear diffuser in carbon fiber, and the 20-inch wheel rims with single locking nut, paired with specially selected Pilot Sport Cup 2 Michelin tires. Handling has been improved by widening the Quadrifoglio’s front wheel tracks by 25 mm and their rear counterparts by 50 mm, and by developing a specific suspension setup for the suspension systems (the front with two oscillating arms, the rear using independent multilink springs).
A unique, functional design that transcends time
The bodywork features a powerful front with new, larger air intakes and technical elements in carbon fiber, giving a specific and precise role and position to the aesthetics. In the lower part, the active splitter has been made even larger on the GTAm, and can now be adjusted lengthways by 40 mm to ensure a perfect balance with the rear. With the large spoiler’s aerodynamic profile and 4-position adjustment (low-high drag) of the central section, the car is also perfectly aerodynamically balanced. On the sides, the carbon fiber side skirts, broadened front fender and the clearly visible carbon fiber on the rear wheel arches accentuate the car’s “size impression”.
The interior stands out with full Alcantara® upholstery on the dashboard, door panels, glove compartment, side pillars, and the central trim on the seats. Alcantara® is used even more extensively in the GTAm version, where the rear seats have been removed, leaving room for a fully upholstered “basin”, hosting specific moldings designed to hold helmets and a fire extinguisher. In the new GTAm, the interior differs slightly in that it features a roll bar, no rear door panels, and the front doors are opened with “pull loops” instead of a handle, in the same colors as the 6-point SABELT seat belts.
Alfa Romeo has set up an exclusive, dedicated purchase process. This exclusivity is accentuated by an experience package, including Bell helmet in special GTA livery with a dedicated serial number, a specific body-color Goodwool car cover, and exclusive after-sales services. The GTAm will also come with full Alpinestars racing apparel. Individual customers can request one of the liveries on offer, including one version featuring the Italian flag, another with Lipari Brown paintwork. Once the customized liveries are gone, the Giulia GTA and GTAm will come in Etna Red, Trophy White and Montreal Green, a color palette that pays tribute to the Italian flag. Another layer of customization lies in the selection of a color for the brake calipers – including the brand-new gold; and in the interior, the roll bar, seat belts and stitching.