Sauber is no more. For the first time since the early 1990s, the famous name isn’t in F1, and it’s down to the team entering under the ‘Alfa Romeo Racing’ banner for 2019.
Sad though it is for Sauber brand to quietly disappear from the top flight of single-seater racing, the return of Alfa Romeo in F1 seems worth celebrating, which is why the Italian company has whipped up a pair of cars for this very purpose.
What you’re looking at is the Alfa Romeo Racing special edition versions of the Giulia and Stelvio Quadrifoglio, each finished in a distinctive red and white livery echoing that of the C38 F1 machine which will be driven by Kimi Räikkönen and Antonio Giovinazzi.
Picking the Quadrifoglio versions of the cars seems particularly fitting, and not just because they’re flipping quick. The F1 car is powered by a Ferrari V6 turbo, rather like these two road cars, which are each powered by a Ferrari-inspired V6 with a twin-turbo layout. That’s close enough, right?
The Alfa Romeo Racing editions are mechanically identical to the standard Quadrifoglios, but with 503bhp apiece, they’re plenty fast enough already. What you do get, along with the Trofeo White/Competizione Red paint job, is an Alcantara steering wheel with carbon trim, a Mopar automatic gear selector, standard-fit carbon ceramic brakes, and an Akrapovič titanium exhaust.
The Giulia also benefits from a naked carbonfibre roof, while both cars have carbonfibre detailing on the mirrors, the front grille, and the side skirts. In terms of equipment, each has been specced with tinted windows, adaptive cruise control, a Harmon Kardon audio system and a mobile connectivity system.
The cars will be coming to Britain, although at the time of writing, Alfa Romeo UK wasn’t able to confirm how many nor the pricing. Given all the added equipment, it’d be wise to expect a sizeable increase relative to the standard Quadrifoglio models. Potentially worth it for being able to tell your passengers ‘leave me alone, I know what I’m doing’ every five minutes, we think.