The Porsche GT3 RS is one of the most hardcore and track focused supercars on the market. With its brilliant 4.0L naturally aspirated flat 6 that puts out a stout 500hp and the massive rear wing providing downforce combined with the track tuned suspension, the GT3 RS is a monster both in the corners and straightaways. It’s the car that 911 enthusiasts swoon over and would be the prized piece in any Porsche collection. If you’re lucky enough to own one of these incredible machines, one of the items on your bucket list is taking it out on the famous Nurburgring where it could stretch its legs and shine like the masterpiece that it really is. After all, the GT3 RS was designed and tested using the Nurburgring as its home track. When that day finally comes, it must be an incredible feeling knowing that your car is almost untouchable as long as you don’t see a McLaren P1 LM, Lamborghini Huracan Performante, or something along those lines. So when an Alfa Giulia QV pops up in your rear view mirror, you wouldn’t give it a second though right? Well, maybe you should.
The Alfa Romeo Giulia QV or Quadrifoglio, is the top of the line midsize performance sedan in the Alfa lineup and it was designed with one goal in mind, dethroning the mighty BMW M3. There are somewhat mixed opinions on whether or not the Giulia has actually achieved that goal or not, but it’s at least a discussion which in itself is impressive considering the length of time the car has been on the market. Granted Alfa Romeo has an extensive background in producing performance cars, so it’s not like it’s a brand new car manufacturer that’s competing with the M3 right out the gate.
Powering the Alfa is a tiny 2.9L twin turbo V6, but don’t let that small motor fool you. It puts out an impressive 505hp, which is more than enough power to compete with the big boys. And you’d think with the motor being that small it wouldn’t be very strong on the low end, but surprisingly it puts out a competitive 443lb-ft of torque. But as we all know, power doesn’t necessarily mean being fast on the race track. It helps of course, but it doesn’t matter how much oomph you have available under your right foot if the car can’t put the power down when it counts. This particular characteristic is something that Alfa Romeo spent a significant amount of time on, and you can see that work being put to good use in this video shot from inside a Giulia QV as it chases down a Porsche 911 GT3 RS on the famous Nurburgring.
Even with all that work, Alfa put into the handling and quickness of the Giulia QV, common sense still tells you that a 911 GT3 RS will still leave it in the dust on a race track like the Ring. Yeah, the Alfa has 5 more horsepower, but more importantly, it also weighs a whopping 700lbs more than the featherweight GT3 RS, and that is a significant weight difference. Plus the Alfa has two more doors, and isn’t there a saying somewhere about two doors are almost always faster than four? OK, admittedly I just made that up, but when you think about it, only on a rare occasion is a four-door car going to be faster than a two door.
You can imagine how shocked the driver of this bright red Porsche GT3 RS must’ve been when he saw this four-door Alfa in his rearview mirror, and no matter what he did he couldn’t shake it. Every time it looks like the Porsche is going to pull away, the Giulia manages to reel it back in. The more I watched this particular track session, the more impressed I was with the Alfa because it kept the Porsche in range almost the entire time.
I can already hear all the “debaters” out there screaming to the contrary of that, so I really should clarify a few things. I realize there are so many variables in this particular situation that it’s ridiculous to come to this sort of conclusion. The most significant variable is the drivers of the two cars, it’s very likely the driver of the Giulia is far more experienced and talented than the driver of the Porsche. Especially because it’s obvious the driver of the Alfa is having to work for that speed and the car is on the ragged edge of its performance capabilities. And even though we don’t see the driver of the Porsche you can tell by the fact that it seems to remain cool, calm and collected the entire time it’s significantly easier to maintain that level of speed.
But even still, it’s also possible that the drivers have similar abilities and the Alfa is just that good. I’m not saying it’s better than the Porsche, not even close actually. What I am saying, is that for a car that cost’s half as much, with two more doors, and a boatload more practicality for everyday use, the Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio might be a decent consolation prize.