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The Alfa Romeo Giulia costs more than a BMW 3-Series

But it does have more power and a standard auto gearbox. Specs and prices here

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Alfa Romeo has given its Giulia range some prices. It’s the one bit of information that’s been missing, and quite a pivotal one if the saloon is to properly take on the BMW 3-Series, Mercedes C-Class and Audi A4.

Its entry point is far higher than all of them, both in price and power. Giulias kick off at £29,180 with the 197bhp 20-litre petrol. That’s £4,000 more than the cheapest 3-Series, but then it’s 63bhp better off, too.

It also gets an eight-speed automatic automatic gearbox as standard. In fact, all Giulias do, with no manual option in the UK. Odd? For a car that appears quite driver focused, perhaps.

Anyway, if you want a diesel Alfa Romeo Giulia, they start at £30,750 with a 148bhp 2.2-litre in Super spec, which brings leather and sat nav. An extra £1,200 upgrades the engine to 178bhp tune.

Further spec levels include Tecnica – which adds a reversing camera, driving assistance systems and electric seats for an absurdly reasonable £245 – and Speciale trim. Sadly not inspired by stripped-out Ferrari 458s, it takes the top-level diesel and adds 18in alloys, leather sports seats and a more aggressive body kit. It costs £34,150.

The one you really want? Why, that’s the £59,000 Giulia Quadrifoglio, the BMW M3 rival with 503bhp and much slideyness built in. Just ask Chris Harris.

So, boys and girls. This, a BMW, or something else altogether?

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