The new Alfa Romeo Giulia GTA and Giulia GTAm have made their debut at the Balocco Proving Ground in Italy, the same location where Autodelta developed the legendary Giulia GTA in 1965.
The former Autodelta workshops at the Balocco Proving Ground, which was built 60 years ago and comprises of 80km of circuit, is the home of the development and testing of all Alfa Romeo cars. It was therefore a fitting location for the Alfa Romeo Giulia GTA and Giulia GTAm to make their debut.
The initials GTA stands for ‘Gran Turismo Alleggerita’, which in English translates as ‘Lightweight Gran Turismo’. Originating in 1965 from the Giulia Sprint GTA, a version of the Sprint GT was set up for sports type-approval and was unveiled at the Amsterdam Motor Show later that year. The bodywork of the Giulia Sprint GT was replaced with an identical aluminium body, with a total weight of 745kg compared to the 950kg of the road-going version.
A second variation concerned the 1570-cc twin cam engine which, in its road-going configuration with dual ignition, reached an impressive output of 115hp. The technicians of Autodelta, the official Alfa Romeo racing department, chose it as the benchmark vehicle for the Touring category, and developed it to achieve a maximum output of 170hp.
The Giulia GTA has taken the developments of the Giulia Quadrifoglio to another level, which itself had taken over from the equally impressive Giulia Veloce. With the widespread use of ultralight materials, the weight of the Giulia GTA has been reduced and the Alfa 2.9 V6 bi-turbo engine has been upgraded to produce 540hp. This gives it a best-in-class weight-to-power ratio of 187 hp per litre. It also delivers extraordinary performance, in terms of both its lap times on the track and its acceleration. With the Launch Mode system, it can accelerate from zero to 62mph in just 3.6 seconds.
Different from the GTA, the Giulia GTAm offers a two-seater configuration with rear roll bar that is type-approved for on-road use. The Giulia GTA features the same power output with five seats resulting in a true supercar also suitable for the whole family.
Alfa Romeo engineers have worked to improve its aerodynamics and handling, but above all to reduce the weight, following the same guidelines as for the 1965 Giulia GTA. Widespread use has been made of components in carbon fibre and composite materials and the aerodynamics have been designed to increase downforce. These solutions employed technical expertise straight from Formula 1, courtesy of Alfa Romeo’s collaboration with Sauber Engineering.
They also developed the side skirts and the new rear spoiler, which is adjustable to four positions on the GTAm. The active front splitter can be extended for use on the track by up to 40mm on the GTAm. Also the carbon fibre rear diffuser is integrated titanium Akrapovič and centrally mounted exhaust system; and the 20-inch wheels with single locking nut, seen for the first time on a saloon, which are paired with Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tyres. The aerodynamic research in the wind tunnel was not limited to the aerodynamic elements, but also focused on the fully-faired underbody.
The GTA and GTAm also features a new rear diffuser that us capable of increasing the car’s downforce. In fact the most intense aerodynamic configuration triples the amount of downforce compared to the Giulia Quadrifoglio, which previously represented the benchmark in its class.
The lightness of the materials used, paired with carbon fibre, resulted in a significant overall decrease in the weight of the car compared to other materials, to the benefit of the car’s overall performance. Alcantara is therefore used more extensively on the GTAm interior, where the removal of the rear seats leaves room for specific compartments which hold helmets and a fire extinguisher.
Customers can request liveries that have been produced by Centro Stile Alfa Romeo, which recall the great racing Alfa’s. One version features the Italian flag and another with Ochre metallic paintwork, and select a number are to be emblazoned on the side door. Aside from the custom liveries, the Giulia GTA and GTAm will come in GTA Red, Trofeo White and Montreal Green, a colour palette that pays tribute to the Italian flag. Another layer of customisation lies in the selection of a colour of the brake calipers – including gold; and in the interior, the roll bar, seat belts and stitching.
Alfa Romeo is offering a wide range of customisations aimed at offering a unique purchase experience, including an experience package with a Bell helmet in special GTA livery that can be customised with the production number of the car, a specific Goodwool car cover and dedicated services. The GTAm will also come with Alpinestars overalls, gloves and boots.
The Alfa Romeo Giulia GTA and GTAm will be limited to just 500 numbered units, with prices retailing at €176,500 and €181,500 OTR respectively.