Romeo, sweet Romeo … you need to hold onto your girl – Giulia.
All jokes aside, I was invited out to Detroit with the Alfa Romeo and Maserati group (a staple in FCA – Fiat Chrysler Automobiles) and was able to experience the 2019 model year lineup of these vehicles. This manufacturer really knows how to bring the brand back to its cherished and sweet history.
Although the trip was relatively short, we were filled with entertainment and Italian heritage, which is exactly what I needed while not even realizing it.
On the first day, I arrived and was greeted by FCA employees to be chauffeured to a quaint, boutique hotel. After a couple hours to get settled, I then moved over to a beautifully decorated venue called The Valley. The Alfa Romeo and Maserati team truly pinpointed this location and transformed it into a night in Tuscany. From the delectable hors d’oeuvres and passed cocktails, to the family-style buffet dinner and desserts. Followed, of course, by a whiskey tasting bar and craft cigar selection from Payne Mason Cigars.
Also, I am unsure of how they did it, but they managed to perfectly time the fire-flies as the sun was setting, all while sitting under a temperate sky.
Amazing work, friends. Amazing work, indeed.
Moving forward to the next day, a group of journalists and myself were transported over to the M1 Concourse where we were greeted with lattes, cappuccinos made by baristas from The Cappuccino Man and breakfast treats; followed by a brief presentation by Alfa Romeo and Maserati Global CEO Tim Kuniskis, where he explained that the brand is aiming to stay pure and true to the companies heritage and roots.
After the driver briefing and mingling, we were able to hop into the vehicles in various capacities. This included an autocross course, street course and on-track course where I was able to pilot the Maserati Quattroporte sedan and race around the M1 Concourse racetrack. We peeled in and out of turns to get the feel of a true racer, while being directed by our crew director, essentially. This part of the event allowed us see and feel what it was like to be on-track and behind the wheel.
What a rush it was. Such a great time piloting this vehicle on a true track and to get a glimpse of what it is like to be one of the professionals in the racing industry.
One of my favorite parts of the driving portion was getting behind the wheel of the 2019 Alfa Romeo Giulia for the street course. On this drive, we were led by a company specialist and she directed us around various cone exercises, as well as allowing us to engage the Anti-Brake System (ABS).
During this time, we swerved in and out of obstacles to make it to the lineup to where we reached rapid speeds from a halted position to make a hard-left turn to brake.
The Giulia was a light-weighted car compared to the Quattroporte and was furnished with a wood paneling and a beautifully adorned LED screen.
The trip was a great experience and very well thought out. The brand was highly recognizable from all directions, which was a strategic and brilliant move.
I must say to the Alfa Romeo and Maserati group, “until next time. Ciao!”