Climb inside and, once again, the Veloce has a half-Quadrifoglio, half-standard Giulia feel. There’s a more regular leather-bound steering wheel rather than the carbon-leather item in the Quadrifoglio, but the carbon on the centre console, dash and door handle surrounds remain. The added Performance Pack brings with it the stunning aluminium gear selector paddles behind the wheel (not to mention adaptive dampers and a limited-slip differential), too. Ultimately the Giulia is a pleasant place to sit and the driving position is spot-on.
Press the engine start button, though, and the resulting noise is not an inspiring one. At idle and regular, low-rpm driving the Veloce’s four-pot has an almost diesel-like ring to it. Mercifully, pushing the revs higher improves the soundtrack. There are no dramatic turbocharger whooshes, just a gentle four-cylinder shout.
The gearbox paddles are exceptional, as I’ve said, and the eight-speed gearbox itself is not too bad at all. Aside from the odd lurch it’s a smooth operator. A very good feature is that, in manual mode, putting your foot to the floor will not send the gearbox into a panic. Far too many gearboxes, even with ‘M’ selected, will drop you down a gear or two for maximum acceleration. Most of the time I’d rather tell the car what to do, not have the car decide for me. Bravo Alfa.