Nowadays, what with the rise of the super SUV, it can often seem like the humble sports saloon is being forgotten. It’s a real shame because in recent years we’ve been graced with some great fast four-doors – most notably the Mercedes-AMG E63 and BMW M5.
Although, when you look at how fast those two are now, they’re arguably super saloons, not sports saloons. So, let’s look at two other cars – cars that fit in to the forgotten sports saloon segment. Enter the BMW M3 and Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio…
For a while, the M3 has been the king of the sports saloon scene, with every iteration of the iconic model always managing to be effortlessly sublime. However, that’s not to say the M3 has never been challenged for its throne, and the most recent contender for the title is the Alfa Giulia Quadrifoglio.
When the Giulia Quadrifoglio arrived on the scene not too long ago, it surprised many people and proved to be a much stronger player than originally thought. It had the powerplant of a proper sports saloon – a 2.9-litre twin-turbo V6 driving 503bhp through the rear wheels. Sounds good, right? Well, sometimes in the case of Alfa, it doesn’t always turn out the way it looks like on paper. This time though, it did turn out just the way it looked on paper. It’s simply amazing to drive.
Not only is it blisteringly quick, with a 0-60mph time of around four seconds and a top speed of 192mph, but it handles all that performance exceptionally well on the road. Everything is precise and balanced, just as it should be in a fantastic sports car. The only thing is, you could say the same about the M3…
Yes, lets talk about the BMW for a bit and then get onto a final verdict. As mentioned before, the M3 is the king and has been for a long time. It’s hard to fault the car really, as every aspect of it is able to come together beautifully out on the open road. Its power output of 425bhp is just perfect for the car and its levels of grip, meaning it’s playful yet composed on the twisty stuff. Its 3.0-litre twin-turbocharged straight-six may not provide the greatest soundtrack, but it still certainly packs a punch.
Sure, the M3 will be replaced pretty soon and the car does show its age in some areas, however, a great driving experience never ages – and that’s what the F80 M3 provides. Is it a better driving experience than the Giulia’s? Lets get onto that verdict, shall we?
Its been said in other head to heads and it shall be said again, both are great. These are two of the very best sports saloons currently available and either one is a good buy nonetheless. But, in all honesty, the Giulia Quadrifoglio might just edge ahead of the M3 in this one. Despite being a bit more of a brute than the M3, the Alfa manages to posses all the amazing driving traits that the BMW has, along with the addition of simply feeling special. From the styling, to the noise, to the extra horsepower, the Italian simply just has more going for it.