The new Alfa Romeo Giulia with Quadrifoglio (Cloverleaf) trim is the successor to the 159 and is set to take on the 3 Series and XE and Audi A4 in 2016.
It will be the first of eight new models due by 2018, and will help boost their sales to over 400,000.
The new Giulia’s bold design is a world away from the angular 159’s, and signifies Alfa’s move into compact executive territory.
While the trademark V-shaped grille remains, underneath are purposeful air intakes and a prominent lip spoiler. The long, kinked bonnet sweeps back to a steeply raked windscreen, while the side profile reveals a rounded window design similar to the Alfa 8C coupé’s.
The Quadrifoglio model produces 503bhp from its 3.0-litre Bi-turbo petrol V6 – that’s 78bhp more than the M3, and up with the Mercedes-AMG C 63 S. And it promises 0-62mph in 3.9 seconds.
There’ll be a choice of automatic or six-speed manual, plus the car will be available with rear or four-wheel drive moving away from the front-wheel-drive 156 and 159.
The Giulia’s interior is a world away from those of current Alfas: while there are some familiar details in the dials and chrome-ringed ventilation controls, the swooping dashboard and large central screen are new as are features such as carbon fibre trim throughout and a push-button engine start.